Courageous effort from Yanks despite referee
The World Cup seen from Chicago
I watched the USA v Italy game around at a friend's place (below). He and his brother are American-Italians, whose parents immigrated from the south-east of Italy in the 60's and they both hold very strong ties with their motherland. They had invited all their buddies around, who were all American except for me, and it provided a charged atmosphere, although thankfully
no sending off's!
I went there with all intentions of being neutral but soon found myself rooting for the Americans, who took the game to their more illustrious opponents in the early stages and looked a completely different side to the one that capitulated against the Czech Republic.
But poor marking again let them down as Gilardino scored but then an almost impossible own goal brought them back level before the referee decided to put his mark on the game. Whilst De Rossi had to go for a terrible elbow attack on McBride, I thought that the foul by Mastroeni was a yellow at worst and then Eddie Pope was very unfortunate to pick up a 2nd bookable.
Despite the best efforts of the Uruguayan referee, who was once suspended by his national association for "irregularities,"
the game remained wide open and Beasley was unlucky to have a goal disallowed with 25 minutes left.
It was a big performance from the Yanks and it has made good press here, grabbing most of the sports headlines. It also means that they go into the last game of the group stages knowing that they can still qualify if they beat Ghana on Thursday and Italy beat the Czech Republic. There is huge incentive for the Italians, they will avoid the pre-competition favourites Brazil, if they finish top of Group E.