So the Americans tied England ... now what?
The Americans didn't pull off the unthinkable Saturday, but they did the next best thing with a hard-fought draw against England -- one of the top teams in the tournament.
Time to sit back and roll into the second round, right? Absolutely not. After Saturday's feel-good win, both England and USA had hoped Sunday would yield a draw between the other two teams in their group, Slovenia and Algeria. Alas, Slovenia scooped up three points and sits on top of the group (while virtually eliminating Algeria) heading into Friday's second round of Group C games.
PHOTOS: United States 1, England 1
Slovenia's win means the U.S. cannot afford a loss Friday morning when the two teams take the field in Johannesburg. The other two results -- a draw and a win -- would put the Americans in excellent position to advance. While we can't assume England wins its next two games, it's a great bet. Knowing that, here are the scenarios for Friday:
If Slovenia defeats the U.S.
Slovenia 6, England 4, USA 1, Algeria 0. The U.S. would still be stuck on one point and Slovenia would already have six, meaning the Americans would need an epic collapse from England, which is not going to happen.
If Slovenia and the U.S. tie
England 4, Slovenia 4, USA 2, Algeria 0. Though the Americans would only have two points and the Slovenians would have four, the U.S. still would be in better position to advance given the teams' final opponents. The U.S., with everything on the line, would be playing a winless Algerian team while Slovenia would have its hands full against the Three Lions.
If the U.S. defeats Slovenia
England 4, USA 4, Slovenia 3, Algeria 0. Again, given their final opponents, the Americans sit in even better position to advance and even put themselves into position to possibly take the top seed in Group C -- if it figures out how to score on its own.