Add two more teams to the Round of 16: Argentina, which just beat Greece 2–0 to win Group B, and South Korea, which held off a hard-charging Nigeria team in a 2–2 draw. So, two of this weekend’s Round of 16 matchups are set: It’s Uruguay versus South Korea at 10 a.m. on Saturday, and Argentina versus Mexico at 2:30 on Sunday. (Check your pool to see how you’re doing.) Okay, now that that’s out of the way … HOLY CRAP, YOU GUYS, AMERICA PLAYS TOMORROW!
Josh Dean, our World Cup Closer, will be back either later tonight or early tomorrow morning with his preview of the massive USA-Algeria game, but considering we’re rocking back and forth on the couch in anticipation of the game, we’re gonna weigh in a bit right now.
The match starts at 10 a.m., on ESPN, with the England-Slovenia game running simultaneously on ESPN2. Bob Bradley’s charges will be without forward Robbie Findley, who drew a red card against Slovenia, which means likely either awesomely named Edson Buddle or awesomely named Herculez Gomez will start opposite Jozy Altidore. Keeper Tim Howard is (mostly) fully healthy, and the team is vowing that it will get off to a better start than it has in its first two matches. We’ve already described the different scenarios for the U.S. to advance, but it’s also worth mentioning that the United States also can win Group C if it beats Algeria AND England and Slovenia draw. (The U.S. can also win the group if they beat Algeria by more than England beats Slovenia.)
A group victory not only portends a better draw in the Round of 16, it also sets up a fun day of drinking for Americans on Saturday. The Group C winner plays at 2:30 on Saturday; the runner-up plays at 10 a.m. on Sunday. Wouldn’t it be more fun if they played at 2:30 on Saturday?
But they must make it that far first. See you tomorrow morning to find out.