The United States Men’s National Team (USMNT) picked up a 1-1 draw in their match on Monday against Wales. It was the country’s first World Cup appearance since 2014 in what led to only a point for this squad. The USMNT will now turn their attention to England in what’s sure to be a thrilling matchup. The US will need at least a point to put themselves in position to advance to the knockout stages. Let’s dive into a full game preview and USA vs England odds.
USA vs England Game Preview
The USMNT will come into this game as sizable underdogs. From a betting perspective, the USA vs England odds are heavily weighted towards our friends from across the pond. On Monday, the world ranked #5 put together a thrashing of Iran. The 6-2 final score put to bed any thoughts of this England team not being ready to play. Those thoughts were following their subpar performances coming into the tournament. It also gave the US side a first glimpse of what they’ll be up against on Black Friday.
England has numerous guys that can score. That was proven on Friday when five different players put one in the net. However, none of them were named Harry Kane, who was substituted out in the second half. Kane, who was the favorite to win the Golden Boot coming into the tournament, is dealing with an ankle injury that could prevent him from starting against the US. If this is the case, it will take a lot of pressure off the American defenders. The US won’t have to throw bodies at the striker when England makes its way into the final third.
US fans were left with mixed emotions following the team’s 1-1 draw against Wales. Initially the team impressed when it dominated the first half. Unfortunately, the early goal led to Gregg Berhalter’s side dropping back while attempting to play for a 1-0 victory. A sloppy foul in the penalty box led to Gareth Bale knotting the game up at one in the second half. It ended up being disappointment for the US faithful, knowing the team was well on its way to three points before shifting to a conservative style of play.
The US will have to do a much better job at capitalizing on their opportunities. The American side had several possessions in the final third in the first half. However, they were lacking on that final pass to create a great opportunity. Wales was a team the US could have put away early, but instead allowed them to crawl back in it. The US won’t be able to control possession against England. Despite Kane’s status, England still has several goal scoring threats which will challenge players like Walker Zimmerman and Tim Ream.
Transition offense and set pieces were two key aspects of the Monday game that the US fumbled on. Too often the team was slow to get up field when winning the ball back. Additionally, Christian Pulisic didn’t do enough with his set piece opportunities. That could be a change that Gregg Berhalter makes for the England match. The US doesn’t have the luxury of continuing to waste great opportunities.
Goalkeeper Matt Turner will need to come up big on Friday. Turner made a couple nice saves in the second half against Wales, which helped the US salvage a point. England is great at getting balls to the net. Stellar goalkeeper play will be necessary if the USMNT is looking to pick up a result against England.
USA vs England Prediction
The US will once again start strong. This time they prove to be much better in transition and with set piece opportunities. They’re able to capitalize on one as their new set piece taker, Gio Reyna sends a great ball into the box that Walker Zimmerman gets his head on to give the USMNT an early lead. They keep bringing pressure through the end of the first half, but goalkeeper Jordan Pickford’s remarkable sprawling saves keeps his team’s deficit at one as we head to the break.
Halfway through the second half we see the Three Lions begin to ramp up the pressure. Matt Turner’s been sensational to this point, but Bukayo Saka is able to level the game at one after a rebound in the 78th minute. England keeps bringing the pressure and it appears they’re finally going to be able to take the lead but a couple big saves from Turner keep the game leveled. The ref blows his whistle for full time as both teams come away with a point in their second group stage match.
A draw once again for the US side, who go into their final group stage game needing a convincing win. They’ve proved to this point that they can hang with anyone. However, it will be heart wrenching if they don’t have at least a knockout stage appearance to show for it.
Final Score: England 1 – USA 1