Confederations Cup Final Liveblog: USA vs. Brazil


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↵No chance, right? No chance at all? Probably not, but hey--the USMNT just beat a better team a few days ago. Anything can happen.
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↵Soccer fans, this is a wonderfully important match, one that we couldn't have possibly seen coming just a week ago. Whether you care about soccer or know much about it, above all else, it's enjoyable to cheer on your country, no?
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↵Pump yourself up with Rivers Cuomo
, turn on ESPN, and enjoy the game with us at this 'ere liveblog, below the break.
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↵PREGAME: The consensus is clear: the Americans can't start the game passively. Problem: without Bradley, this is not a very attack-friendly situation for the US. Still, wait around for the Brazilians to strike first, and they'll make that wish come true in a hurry.
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↵PREGAME: Ah, the vuvuzelas. Wildly annoying, yes, but I've grown accustomed to them. I'll miss them.
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↵No I won't.
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↵PREGAME: As predicted, Feilhaber replaces Bradley in the starting lineup after Bradley's horrendously undeserved red card late in Thursday's match. Other than that, no surprises with Davies and Altidore up front.
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↵PREGAME: Before the game, the Cup remembers the sudden death of Cameroon's Marc-Vivien Foe 6 years ago today with a speech from his son at midfield.
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↵And now that we've paid our respects, it's time for the match.
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↵1st minute: We're underway with Brazil controlling play.
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↵3rd minute: Just for reiteration's sake, the USMNT is 1-14 against the Brazilians. This is no accident.
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↵USA put pressure on Brazil, but Dempsey's shot is weak and woefully off the mark. Not a serious chance.
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↵6th minute: Brazil's so dangerous every time they're close to the goal. USA still giving them the wings and betting Brazil can't put the ball in the middle; mainly it's leading to corner kicks as the defense pushes the crosses out of bounds. Not the right side of the field for possession to stay.
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↵7th minute: Kaka gets his head cleanly on a corner, but he pushes it wide and the US can get out of the shadow of their own net.
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↵9th minute: Brazil back on attack after an ineffectual possession for the Americans.
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↵ ↵10th minute: GOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!! GOOOOOAAAAAALLLLLLLLLL!!!!
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↵Dempsey somehow cleanly fields an entry pass from Spector, and a quick turnaround bounces off Julio Cesar's hand into the net. 1-0, USA.
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↵11th minute:
Upon replay, Dempsey didn't really shoot the ball as much as redirect the cross. Unreal play.
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↵ ↵12th minute: Brazil are straight back on the attack, and a fine save by Howard preserves the lead.
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↵ ↵13th minute: And now Davies streaks with the ball, but the defense catches up and forces a corner kick.
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↵ ↵14th minute: Bocanegra with a clean header, and Brazil deflects it out for another corner.
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↵And jeez, that was also a fine scoring chance. USA can't capitalize, but they are playing with an incalculably greater amount of confidence than their last match with Brazil.
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↵16th minute: Kaka gets an unmolested opportunity, but he shoots it into the forest of defenders and it's easily blocked.
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↵18th minute: Donovan sends in a fine pass on a free kick from about 35 yards out, but the US can't get a clean shot.
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↵19th minute: Yellow card for Bocanegra, and he's lucky that's it after a ludicrous bear hug on Kaka. US still keeping Brazil at bay; they haven't had a clean look since Kaka's shot was blocked a while ago.
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↵22nd minute: After some pressure on offense by Brazil, a dangerous entry pass is headed away without incident and the Americans try to take control. They fail to do so. Brazil now pushing the issue.
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↵24th minute:
The easy winner for Most Unfortunate Name on the USMNT has to be defender Jay Demerit.
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↵25th minute: Tim Howard with a textbook save on a rocket of a shot.
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↵26th minute: Yellow card for Felipe Melo, getting chippy.
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↵27th minute: GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!! GOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAALLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! USA LEADS 2-0!!!!!
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↵Landycakes and Davies break out and lead a sensational attack on the goal after a turnover during the Brazil attack. Donovan fakes Julio Cesar out of his cleats and buries his shot in the far corner. Brazil are stunned.
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↵30th minute: A dangerous cross nearly sneaks into the net for the US. The Americans are back on full attack, while Brazil look concussed. They can't get into the locker room soon enough.
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↵31th minute: I can't believe I just wrote that.
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↵32nd minute: Clark and Feilhaber try to put another shot on goal, but the Brazilan defense holds stout.
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↵35th minute: Andre Santos forces a save by Howard on the wing, where the Americans are getting utterly torched. Corner, and the header goes over the net with perfect coverage by Howard. Not a real scoring chance, and the Americans take control.
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↵36th minute: And just like that, Altidore draws a, um, questionable yellow card on Andre Santos on the wing. Free kick from Donovan.
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↵37th minute: Like Brazil's chance before, the cross is headed harmlessly over the net. Brazil's ball.
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↵38th minute: Rough play from Donovan draws the foul. Same amount of contact that got Andre Santos a card, but nobody's booked here.
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↵39th minute: Ball is turned over and Davies is back on the attack again, but he can't get a shot off under tremendous pressure. Both teams fighting for control as the half winds down.
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↵42nd minute: Robinho iis very active on the left wing, but the American midfielders and defenders are expertly keeping the ball away from Howard. A non-threatening shot goes far wide as Howard tumbles into the side of the net.
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↵44th minute: USA cannot keep control of the ball to sustain an attack, it's all Brazil for the last few minutes. Still, Howard's not being forced to do much. A shot on Howard is deflected out, and it's a corner for Brazil.
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↵45th minute: The corner's sent into a sea of white jerseys, and Howard grabs the sky-high deflection. One minute of stoppage time.
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↵45th minute +1: A super-dangerous cross is barely deflected by Bocanegra, and that's the only reason it's not 2-1 at the break, as a Brazilian (didn't catch who) was breaking for an easy goal; Howard was in no position.
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↵Whistle blows, and it's 2-0 US and A at the half. They've got 45 minutes of hell in front of them, but survive it and the title is theirs. Such a surreal first half.
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↵HALFTIME: Billy Mays died?! What the hell? That's a damn shame.
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↵Second half kickoff: Americans' ball as they kick off. This second half's for you, Billy Mays.
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↵47th minute: GOOOOOAAAAALLLLL! Guhhhhh. Just like that, Fabiano strikes on a grgeoushot, and it's 2-1 USA.
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↵49th minute:
I'm still reeling about both that shot and Billy Mays. Not kidding on either one. USA still having a ton of trouble maintaining pressure on Brazil's defense. Feilhaber penetrates but can't challenge Julio Cesar.
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↵52nd minute: It seems like the Americans have about 70 guys in the box right now to help keep the lead. all the same, recall that Brazil needed only about 20 minutes to hang 3 goals on USA the first time they met.
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↵53rd minute: Something approaching gross incompetence as the USA has a fine run at the goal, but Donovan mishandles an easy pass near the edge of the penalty box. One turnover and an American foul later, and it's a free kick for Brazil.
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↵55th minute: Nothing happens on the free kick, but Feilhaber fouls Kaka again, and it's another free kick. Deflections ahoy, Brazil gets too physical in the box, and the Americans take over possession.
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↵57th minute: Tick, tick, tick. Brazil's getting a little frustrated, but the Americans just aren't even challenging.
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↵58th minute: A corner kick forces a heroic save from Howard (upon replay: rather pedestrian), and a kick off the rebound sails about a quarter mile over the goal.
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↵60th minute: Only the ghost of Billy Mays keeps the ball out of the net on a vicious header. No wait, watching the replay, that was a goal. Howard sells it as a save off the post, but yeesh, it should really be tied.
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↵62nd minute: It's nothing but deft crosses into the box for Brazil, who are putting unbelievable pressure on Howard. Only by sheer luck are the Americans still leading, and you get the feeling that'll be remedied, and soon.
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↵64th minute: Yeah, same as what I just said. Brazil is supremely active right now.
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↵65th minute: Donovan fires a knucklepuck of a shot at Julio Cesar, but it's saved cleanly, US retains control.
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↵66th minute: And Julio Cesar makes another fine save to keep the margin at one goal. The Americans need much, much more of this. Deep breaths, people.
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↵68th minute: Brazil showing some signs of losing compsure. The urgency (and that blown goal call) are getting to them. And now Lucio gets a yellow card for a totally unnecessary shove.
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↵71st minute: Howard make a miraculous save on Fabiano after the defense falls asleep watching the ball. If Howard hangs back, that's an easy goal; he had to grab it right off Fabiano's foot. Howard's furious and rightly so.
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↵73rd minute: Brazil fires a slow, ineffectual shot wide of the net. America impatiently takes a chance and loses possession.
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↵74th minute. GOOOOOAAAAAALLLL! And there it is. Brazil's attack is too strong, and after a header hits the post, Faziano leaves no doubt with a header off the deflection. Howard can only do so much, and it is tied at 2-2 with 15 minutes and stoppage remaining.
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↵76th minute: Now the USMNT shows a bit of patience on offense, controlling the ball and looking for openings. None there, but composure is critical here. A nifty entry pass in front of the Brazilian goal finds no body, and Brazil takes over.
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↵79th minute: Donovan gets mauled as he goes for a header, and it's a free kick. A hell of a free kick, at that, as Julio Cesar has to leap for the ball before it's headed in. Danger danger.
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↵80th minute: We neglected to mention that Bornstein came on to replace Altidore, and Kljestan has replaced Feilhaber. Bornstein gets a clean look but pushes the shot far wide. Not really sure where the firepower is for USA.
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↵82nd minute: Kaka finds Robinho, who puts forth a scary shot that fortunately sails wide. Americans cannot get control, and Fabiano somehow can't put two tries into the net. Brazil may not need over.... oh, crap.
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↵83rd minute: GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAL! On the resultant corner after USA cleared the Fabiano attack, Lucio fires a rocket of a header into the net. 3-2 Brazil, and this one's just about over.
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↵86th minute: Announcers wonder how the Americans can score a goal late. Pretty impossible without using baseball bats as weapons.
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↵88th minute: The US gets a corner off a deflection, and Conor Casey replaces Clark in a desperate hope to take advantage of the set piece.
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↵Unfortunately, Onyewu's header sails high; it was probably their last fine chance.
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↵90th minute: Howard sends the ball into Brazil's zone after an errant shot by Kaka. Dempsey can't get to a cross by Donovan.
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↵Three minutes of stoppage.
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↵93rd minute:
The Americans just can't get control of the ball. This one's just about done.
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↵And there's the whistle. Your final in a gut-punch of a loss is 3-2 Brazil. The Brazilians were clearly and undeniably the better squad. Still, leading 2-0 at the break and dropping the match without even making it to overtime is a heartbreaker. That's going to be one silent locker room. That's too bad.
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↵Thanks for reading, everybody, and congratulations to the USMNT for making a magnificent challenge for the Confederations Cup.↵

This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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