The group stage is over and it is time for the principle occasion because the knockout rounds of the 2022 FIFA World Cup start. There is no time for alleviating your self into the video games that matter as they begin of with a bang as the USA sq. off in opposition to the Netherlands in probably the most intriguing matches of the spherical, adopted by Argentina taking up one of many shock groups of the event in Australia.
For the U.S., Saturday’s match affords the opportunity of matching their finest efficiency at a males’s World Cup within the trendy period. The 2002 run to the quarterfinals is the deepest run for the reason that very first World Cup in 1930 the place two group stage wins put them within the semifinals. It is a Netherlands staff that wasn’t actually challenged by their competitors, which included Ecuador, Senegal and hosts Qatar in Group A. The U.S., however, had been pushed by one of many event favorites in England, who they held to a 0-0 draw. In between that, they drew 1-1 with Wales within the opener and beat Iran 1-0 to safe development.
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Saturday’s World Cup schedule
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Netherlands vs. United States, 10 a.m. ET
One matchup to look at: Cody Gakpo vs. Sergino Dest/Antonee Robinson. Gakpo is the principle scorer for the Netherlands and he often performs on the correct facet of assault for them (both as a striker or a winger, relying on the way you outline his place). But it surely could be tempting for the Netherlands to change it up and play him on the left, the place he performs for his membership, PSV Eindhoven, so as to match him up in opposition to the defensively suspect Dest. Both manner, the Dutch do not create many possibilities, however once they do, it is Gakpo getting on the tip of them. He is scored in every of the Netherlands sport to date and it is going to be on the American fullbacks to see it does not occur once more
Featured Recreation | Netherlands vs. United States
Probably to attain a aim: Christian Pulisic. He scored and sacrificed his physique within the course of in opposition to Iran. That aim was the distinction and carried the U.S. into the knockout rounds. If they will preserve this journey going it is as a result of Pulisic will have the ability to terrorize a Dutch protection and create for himself and others. This U.S. facet took extra photographs throughout the group stage than the Dutch staff did, so search for Pulisic to run the present in assault.
Man of the Match decide: Matt Turner. It will not take numerous saves, however he’ll must give you one or two enormous ones if the U.S. wish to pull this off. And he is acquired that sort of sport in him. Turner won’t excel together with his toes, however he is wonderful at doing the first factor goalkeepers receives a commission for: Stopping photographs. An excellent staff would not should rely on their keeper. However this is not the best of groups, it is a good one seeking to pull and upset. That may require Turner to play an essential position.
Match prediction: An early Pulisic aim units the tone and a few late Matt Turner saves slam the door dwelling on a historic upset for the USA males’s nationwide staff. They win 1-0.
USA vs. Netherlands lineups
USA beginning XI: Matt Turner, Sergino Dest, Walker Zimmerman, Tim Ream, Antonee Robinson, Tyler Adams, Yunus Musah, Weston McKennie, Tim Weah, Jesus Ferreira, Christian Pulisic
Netherlands beginning XI: Noppert, Timber, van Dijk, Ake, Dumfries, de Roon, de Jong, Blid, Klaassen, Gakpo, Depay
Argentina vs. Australia, 2 p.m. ET
One matchup to look at: Nicolas Otamendi vs. Mathew Leckie. Otamendi is the veteran presence of this again line, and he units the tone together with his aggression and energy. Leckie, however, is the piece in assault that may give this staff the sting, as we noticed in opposition to Denmark. Otamendi might want to preserve Leckie in entrance of him and intention to have help to shut him down, in any other case the attacker has all that’s wanted to assist spring a shock for the Aussies.
Featured Recreation | Argentina vs. Australia
Probably to attain a aim: Lionel Messi. After having his penalty saved in opposition to Poland, he’ll be hungry to attain right here and may. On paper, Argentina are 10 instances higher than the Aussies, however the identical was true in opposition to Saudi Arabia. Messi is aware of that any lead they get, they should construct on it and never let anyone stick round. Anticipate him to take fairly just a few hits from deep on this one.
Man of the Match decide: Enzo Fernandez. He is been huge for the reason that second sport and appears to be cementing his spot within the center. He can do a little bit of all the things and has the fast decision-making instincts wanted to alter a sport in assault. He’ll be enormous as soon as once more.
Match prediction: Just like the Poland sport, Argentina dominate possession and the possibilities because the scoreline does not mirror how one-sided it’s. Argentina 2, Australia 0.