US v Nigeria
6/7/14 6pm ET
Everbank Field – Jacksonville, FL
TV: ESPN, WatchESPN, Unimas
In the last public match before the 2014 World Cup (wow), the US faces Nigeria at Everbank Field in Jacksonville, Florida. Other than a closed-door tune-up match against Belgium, this is it. Ghana awaits (#WeGhanaWin). Can you believe 4 years has passed since we beat Australia 3-1 in South Africa? Time flies when you’re winning games.
The USMNT is now 2-0 in its preparation for Brazil, beating Turkey 2-1 at Red Bull Arena last week. Two weeks ago the Yanks beat Azerbaijan 2-0 at Candlestick Park. Could the US finish by beating Nigeria? We shall quickly find out. Over 50K fans are expected on Saturday night to see the US off. As Ian Darke noted, Jurgen Klinsmann fielded virtually the same team in the WC opening as the final prep match for Germany in 2006. Could we see the same 11 that will start against Ghana on Saturday? Here’s the full squad, in case you didn’t know:
GK: Brad Guzan (Aston Villa), Tim Howard (Everton), Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
DEF: DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Timmy Chandler (Eintracht Frankfurt), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), Fabian Johnson (Borussia Mönchengladbach), DeAndre Yedlin (Seattle Sounders FC)
MID: Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg), Julian Green (Bayern Munich), Jermaine Jones (Besiktas), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
FOR: Jozy Altidore (Sunderland), Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC), Aron Johannsson (AZ Alkmaar), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes)
On the other side, Nigeria is playing its’ final match prior to heading to Brazil as well. The Nigerians have a tall task ahead in Brazil, grouped with Argentina, Bosnia & Herzegovina as well as Iran. A tough group, but far more manageable than that of the US. The US has only faced the Nigerians once which resulted in a 3-2 victory in 1995 in Foxborough. Regardless, a stern final test for Klinsmann & Co in a humid/warm atmosphere that will be similar to that of Brazil. Well scheduled, Jurgy.
One thing is for damn sure: we will be at this match, and the next 3 supporting for 90 minutes. This is the moment we have been waiting for. The stage is set, let’s do this.
Love you, AO Family.