CELEBRATE We made it this far!

Fulltime: It's 1-0 to Germany, but the USA win! ...a place in the knockout stages! The American players manage to deliver one last assault on the German goal, working a series of one-two passes from the right to the left—but a German defender gets a tackle in and the ball goes out for a corner. The corner kick lofts to the far post for Dempsey, who gets a head to it, but goes over the top. Thrilling stuff! Well done boys. Conceding one goal to the former World Cup champions, and one of the strongest teams in this tournament, is not a shabby result. Special credit to the defense. Our strange odyssey in the land of samba dancing continues. See you next time!


92 mins: Two more minutes of stoppage time. Meanwhile against Ghana, Ronaldo just missed where Messi would have unquestionably scored. He receives a through ball in the center of the penalty box with a defender a step behind him, but instead of shifting and tapping into the corner with his left, he tries to poke home with his right foot. The ball bounces tamely off the goalkeeper.

88 mins: DeMarcus Beasley tangles with a German defender, who hurls himself on the ground—and the shitty referee calls a foul on Beasley. He's furious.

85 mins: Clint Dempsey flops over near the edge of the penalty box under pressure, leaving Germany's Lahm to pick up the ball and trot gingerly in the other direction. Dempsey has not had sight of goal all game. The good news is: I think we're through to the next round of the World Cup. Ghana don't look at all likely to claim victory over Portugal, and even if Germany slot another goal in, we'll still safe.

82 mins: A chorus of whoops echoes around 95 Slide as a second Seattle Sounders player, DeAndre Yedlin, is subbed on for Graham Zusi on the right wing. With his first touch of the game, however, he slices a cross into the stands.

79 mins: The crowd at 95 Slide are on their feet! But not because of anything an American player did. Portugal (Ronaldo, no longer sporting the Z shaved into the side of his head), have retaken the lead against Ghana: 2-1.

75 mins: It's bumper cars out there: USA's Bedoya and Jones collide and crumple to the ground. They're both laid flat out, but the ref waives play on, before the Germans tap the ball out of play so the medics can rush onto the field. Jones has a bloody nose.

Also, yay! Now we just need to reclaim the word "football."


65 mins: That, in a nutshell, sums up the gulf between us and the great teams: One of our players has acres of space in midfield, with teammates streaming forward to his left and right. The crowd here are leaping to their feet. But he mistimes his pass and the ball rolls out of play. Bethany insists she's "still a patriot," but admits the truth: we do not deserve to win this game.

61 mins: That's terrible officiating: DeMarcus Beasley is brought down as he breaks away towards the midline, but the referee plays advantage. A stray pass falls to Germany and seconds later, two American players knock down Schweinsteiger. But only the second foul is called—Bradley gets a yellow card.

56 mins: Ghana have just leveled 1-1 with Portugal! Which means, if the scores stay the way they are, we'll go through to the knockout stages.

54 mins: GERMANY SCORE: 1-0. Tim Howard does well to bat a shot away but German talisman Thomas Mueller is there to volley home the rebound. I told Bethany at halftime that Germany would score—Mueller will put those away. So disappointing that we're missing our own top striker, Jozy Altidore, to injury.

46 mins: And it takes Germany less than a minute to threaten the US goal, with Klose skying a header into the stands from close range. He typically buries those.

Halftime: We're almost back underway here. Germany are introducing the aging, record World Cup goalscorer Miroslav Klose up front.

Meanwhile in Brazil, Human Rights Watch is calling for an investigation into excessive use of force by Brazilian police units against anti-World Cup protesters.

Bethany Jean Clement arrived early before the game at 95 Slide, where she says a crowd of soccer fans outside broke into a riot sleepily loitered around until the doors opened. Here's how we're looking right now—if we stay in the top two spots, we advance to the next round:


46 mins: I have a feeling Landon Donovan would have done better there than Lex Luther lookalike Michael Bradley, whose touch lets him down.

44 mins: Still 0-0, or nil-nil, in British parlance. Speaking of Britain, by the way, I'm a wee bit conflicted here because Germany are fielding three stalwarts from North London club Arsenal: the languid central playmaker Mesut Ozil, the beanpole sweeper Per Mertesacker, and the left forward Lukas Podolski. If one of them is involved in a goal, a part of my footballing brain will be happy for them.

37 mins: Yellow card for USA's Omar Gonzalez, and here comes Podolski again with a raking cross from the left. Tim Howard lunges, cat-like, to collect the ball before anyone can get on the end of it.

32 mins: I can't tell if it's still raining at the stadium, but I think not. The field is soggy, though. Bethany asks whether that's an advantage for USA—because it never rains in the Rhineland, right? I'm not so sure. One American player accustomed to the rain, Seattle's own Clint Dempsey, our lone striker up front, has hardly seen the ball so far.

30 mins: We're getting back in this, people. Germany haven't created any chances for the past few minutes. Meanwhile: Portugal score against Ghana! Or rather, a Ghanian player makes a dreadful clearance and pops the ball over his head into his own net. Cheers from some of the USA fans here.

25 mins: Leftback DeMarcus Beasley jinks his way through a couple Germans and the whole crowd here is rooting for him! But he slows up and passes it off, and Germany make an interception. Also: Jermaine Jones gets inadvertently taken out by the referee, who grins instead of showing himself a red card.

21 mins: To give you a simpler version of the graph below: If the USA wins or draws, we advance. And finally, we look dangerous in a breakaway. Jones charges through the midfield but rather than taking on a phalanx of German defenders, he lays off for Bradley, who works it wide to Zusi. Zusi curls the ball towards the far corner, but goes just high.

19 mins: The rare times we've had more than couple moments of possession, we haven't been able to get anywhere near Germany's goal. A replay catches Jones tugging back on Schweinsteiger's shirt in midfield as the German gets away from him. Lucky the ref didn't see that!

14 mins: Gonzales has been our savior on the back line several times over, making last-ditch but on-target tackles as Germany whip dangerous balls into the penalty box. Hang on to your seats, folks.

12 mins: The person next to me is rooting for Portugal to score against Ghana. Here's why:


9 mins: Germany are bearing down on the US goal like a pack of hungry wolves. They fire in crosses from the right, then the left, but can't finish. Finally the ball breaks into our half of the field for Clint Dempsey, but before you know it, Tim Howard has to boot the ball clear again.

7 mins: Ooooooh. Germany work it down the left side and Podolski hits a low steady cross across the face of goal. Tim Howard is down to collect the ball before the German strikes can tap in.

5 mins: I'm at 95 Slide, where there's one TV simultaneously showing the Ghana vs. Portugal game, which is also 0-0.

4 mins: Germany have the edge so far. 0-0.