Saturday, June 19, 2010

Slovenia led 2-0, USA fought back to 2-2, and referee's mystifying decision.

**Both teams came into the match with confidence to beat each other, but the mental struggle of the USA need to get more rewards in the game this time.

Team USA overcame a two-goal deficit with an incredible rally in the second half of its match-up with Slovenia and appeared to seal the deal -- until the referee controversially nixed the Americans’ game-winning goal.

Two first-half goals from Slovenia had dealt a massive blow to the USA's bright start to the 2010 World Cup.

Valter Birsa hit a spectacular long-shot that beat U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard in the 13th minute at Ellis Park in Johannesburg which was followed up with a cool finish from Zlatan Ljubijanic who beat an offside trap by an unorganized American defense just before halftime.

Three minutes into the second half, the U.S. came roaring back and star midfielder Landon Donovan sent a scorching shot from a difficult angle into Slovenia's goal, giving fans hope of at least a tie. The tie finally came from a strike from midfielder Michael Bradley in the 81st minute.

Donovan curled a freekick from the right into the packed box. Edu met it on the volley and blasted in from close range! But the referee's whistle had already gone so it won't count. Quite why the referee's whistle had gone is not clear - there was no offside and the only fouls being perpetrated were by Slovenians holding on to assorted American jerseys. Mystifying decision.

Team Line-Ups:

United States:
Tim Howard, Oguchi Onyewu, Jay DeMerit, Carlos Bocanegra, Steve Cherundolo, Jose Torres (Maurice Edu 45'), Michael Bradley, Clint Dempsey, Landon Donovan, Jozy Altidore, Robbie Findley (Benny Feilhaber 45').

Samir Handanovic, Cesar Bostjan, Marko Suler, Bojan Jokic, Miso Brecko, Aleksandar Radosavljevic, Robert Koren, Andraz Kirm, Valter Birsa (Zlatko Dedic 87 '), Milivoje Novakovic, Ljubijankic Zlatan (Nejc Pecnik 74' Andrej Komac 90 ')


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