Final score - after extra time
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2:30 PM ET, June 26, 2010
Royal Bafokeng Stadium, Rustenburg, South Africa
Last 5 Matches
United States: L-W-D-D
Ghana-United States Preview
While the United States is carrying the hopes of a nation, Ghana is carrying the hopes of an entire continent.The underdog teams meet for a spot in the quarterfinals Saturday in Rustenberg, with Ghana representing the lone African team to reach the knockout stage.The United States came through as unlikely Group C winners, needing a goal by Landon Donovan in second-half stoppage time to defeat Algeria 1-0 on Wednesday. The Americans earned their first victory after draws with England and Slovenia."It's something I'll have embedded in my mind forever," Donovan said.This World Cup has also been memorable for the dismal performance by African teams on their continent. Ghana is the last survivor, earning the runner-up spot in Group D after losing 1-0 to Germany on Wednesday."We want to prolong our stay here," midfielder Sulley Muntari said. "We want to win every game. We want to reach far."This one is being hosted by an African country."Donovan's goal continued a personal resurgence that he claims started after the U.S. fell 2-1 to Ghana in a group-stage finale in the 2006 World Cup that prevented the Americans from advancing."That was not a good day. For me or for the team," Donovan said. "What I remember most personally was my tentativeness and the immediate feeling afterward of the finality of it, and how disappointing that was."The Black Stars reached the round of 16 in 2006 in their first World Cup appearance, falling 3-0 to Brazil. They came to South Africa this year with a young team that did not include injured Chelsea star Michael Essien.Coach Milovan Rajevac, a Serb, has done an excellent job by installing a defensive mentality for a team that has lacked it in the past. Ghana, which employs a lone striker in Asamoah Gyan, conceded two goals in three matches."Remember that most of the boys in this current team were not there four years ago and they are getting a feel of it for the first time here. I'm very happy for them," Muntari said.The U.S. is trying to duplicate its quarterfinal finish in 2002, and Wednesday's dramatic finish has created plenty of buzz back home in a nation where the sport has long been an afterthought.The victory came without central defender Oguchi Onyewu, who was benched. Onyewu's disputed foul led to a decisive penalty kick by Stephen Appiah in the match four years ago."They are a very good side," Muntari said. "It's not going to be easy."The winner will face Uruguay or South Korea, putting a possible spot in the semifinals within reach."It's not a failure if we don't win Saturday, but there's such a massive opportunity to do something so much more special," Donovan said. "And I really want to emphasize that to everybody, and make sure we understand that."