USA v Germany – Self-Serving StalemateStats
USA v Germany
Both teams recorded 2-2 draws in their second group matches, but in contrasting circumstances. Another draw would see both progress.
A draw here would see both teams progress to the knockout stages, with Germany topping the group and USA finishing second.
Although there is incentive to finish top of the pile and avoid a last-16 clash with Belgium, both managers would surely take a point if offered to them before kick off.
USA were within seconds of confirming their place in the knockout stages of the 2014 World Cup, but must go through it all again against Germany this Thursday evening. Having beaten Ghana in their first game the Americans knew a win against Portugal would confirm a last-16 berth.
The Portuguese took an early lead through Nani but USA gradually took control of the game from thereon in. Jermaine Jones and Clint Dempsey gave USA the lead in the second half but with virtually the last touch of the game Silvestre Varela grabbed a point for Portugal and denied the Americans all three.
Dempsey now has two goals in as many 2014 World Cup matches and has three in his last three international appearances, having scored in the friendly victory over Nigeria immediately prior to the tournament. At the back Jurgen Klinsmann’s side have kept only one clean sheet in their last six games.
Germany, meanwhile, came back from being 2-1 down to grab a point in their second group game against Ghana. Mario Gotze had given them the lead just after half time, before Andre Ayew and Asamoah Gyan turned the game on its head. Miroslav Klose then equalised with 20 minutes to go and in doing so became Germany’s all-time record scorer and equalled Ronaldo’s record of 15 goals at World Cup finals.
There is a small chance that Jozy Altidore could be available for the Americans here, but with a place in the last 16 looming he may not be risked from the offset; possibly being introduced as a late substitute if required.
Jerome Boateng is a doubt with a hip injury that forced him off at half time in the draw with Ghana, while Thomas Müller took a blow to the head in the dying stages of that game and is also therefore doubtful for this one.
Head To Head
USA won 4-3 in a friendly between the two nations 12 months ago, with Dempsey scoring a brace on the night. Germany had won the previous meeting 4-1 back in 2006, while the Germans also won 1-0 when the teams met at the World Cup in 2002.
In a game that they do not need to win, I’d certainly be avoiding the Germans at odds on prices in the Match Odds market. A draw would be enough to see both sides progress and Germany top the group, and although I wouldn’t suggest any foul play, it’s unlikely either team will over commit players forward in the closing stages if the scores are level.
By the same reasoning, a goalless draw is also worth a play at odds of around 6/1. Likewise the 4/5 available on Under 2.5 goals.