The preliminaries are over and now it's do-or-die time at the World Cup. The American team has advanced to the Round of 16 where they find a hungry Belgium team waiting. The winner gets Argentina in the quarterfinals. The loser: A plane ride home.
The Wire will be posting updates and reaction throughout the game, so join us for kick off, promptly at 4:00 p.m. Eastern. You can watch on ESPN, Univision, or WatchESPN.com.
6:31 p.m.: It's over. Belgium will advance to play Argentina. America, to their credit, looked like they might get embarrassed off the field in extra time and instead played their hearts out to the end. It's a performance to proud of in some ways, especially at Tim Howard's end. Goodnight, all!
6:30 p.m.: Michael Bradley getting hassled in the midfield, gets a free kick with a minute of time to go.
6:28 p.m.: Jones whacks the ball across the bar again. Lots of US chances, lots of great attacking football, it only took them 105 minutes to get there!
6:25 p.m.: This bar is shrieking!
6:24 p.m.: A beautifully fed pass goes agonizingly close. That was somethin.
6:23 p.m.: America get some calls in their favor and now we have a nice free-kick!
6:22 p.m.: Belgium wisely makes a time-wasting substitution.
6:21 p.m.: I'm going to eat my hands.
6:20 p.m.: Jermaine Jones punches it JUST WIDE. JEEEEZ
6:19 p.m.: That is the first goal Belgium have conceded! American remains on the attack.
6:18 p.m.: COME ON
6:17 p.m.: WELL. GREEN SCORES. BELGIUM 2-1 USA. MIRACLES, GUYS. LET'S MAKE IT HAPPEN.
6:14 p.m.: Time for a break. 15 mins to go. A comeback would be quite an unprecedented thing at this point, but DO YOU BELIEVE IN MIRACLES?!
6:13 p.m.: I'm having bleak thoughts.
6:11 p.m.: Belgium scores again. 2-0. This one looks over, folks.
6:09 p.m.: Another promising cross ends in nothing, but Jones falls to a nasty hit from a Belgian defender. Poor fella.
6:08 p.m.: Tim Howard has made 14 saves, the most of any keeper in one World Cup game since 1966.
6:06 p.m.: America is playing utterly without energy except for their crosses, which they overhit every time. Jones just got dispossessed sseemingly by himself.
6:05 p.m.: Wondolowski kicks a cross absolutely nowhere. The Belgian fans think they have this in the bag.
6:03 p.m.: That's Tim Howard's 13th save of the night, Darke tells us.
6:01 p.m.: A haunted-looking Michael Bradley floats a free kick over the bar. I dunno, guys.
6:00 p.m.: Friggin Prince Harry
5:59 p.m.: Welp. Belgium 1-0 United States
5:57 p.m.: We're back!
5:54 p.m.: I hate that Volkswagen ad where the guy screams "GOOOOOOAL!" more than I hate Satan.
5:53 p.m.: I hope Klinsmann has a bucket of Michael Jordan Special Drink for the players to have before they go back out.
5:52 p.m.: If he'd scored that goal we'd have won the game by now
5:51 p.m.: Full time. We go to extra time. I'm sure Wondolowski is feeling terrific right now.
5:50 p.m.: um.
5:48 p.m.: Oh, he did it again! Three minutes added time, folks. Belgium will use all of them for more corner kicks.
5:47 p.m.: Tim Howard stopped a ball from going in the goal with his hands, good job buddy, clearly something you're used to doing.
5:46 p.m.: Belgium have had a thousand shots on goal and missed all of them. I think they must be cursed by some kind of woods witch.
5:44 p.m.: OH MY GOD WE GOT A CORNER
5:42 p.m.: Belgium has a corner kick!
5:40 p.m.: In a shocking turn of events, America concedes another corner.
5:38 p.m.: Man, if I was Belgian I'd be losing my mind right now.
5:35 p.m.: Looks like Gonzalez is injured. This will use America's final substitution.
5:34 p.m.: Whatever kind of money Tim Howard is earning, they should double it.
5:32 p.m.: The tide may be turning just a little bit? Belgium is getting sloppy and frustrated, and we've had a couple good chances.
5:31 p.m.: America brings on Wondolowski for Zusi, who really needed to go off.
5:30 p.m.: Tim Howard is working miracles in goal here.
5:29 p.m.: Dempsey knocks a cleanly-hit, but slightly weak shot into the goalie's arms. Progress!
5:27 p.m.: Klinsmann desperately needs to make a substitution. This team is playing without energy and looks frustrated.
5:26 p.m.: The crowd at Videology seems to think that if an American player falls on the ground, he must have been fouled.
5:25 p.m.: We just fired a cross into the Belgian goalie's arms, and I swear it's the first time I've seen him move.
5:24 p.m.: IT'S TIME FOR ALTIDORE. COME ON, JURGEN. BRING HIM IN.
5:23 p.m.: Anyone out there who thinks rope-a-dope is a good strategy and America should continue to defend and create very few chances for themselves: No.
5:19 p.m.: Uh oh, Michael Bradley screwed up again. The crowd will be baying for his blood soon.
5:17 p.m.: After halftime America seems even more doomed to tensely defend within their own box. This is a bad idea as Belgium seem to have a real chance every two minutes. But I also understand the impulse to lock down after all the scary counter-attacks of the first half.
5:15 p.m.: Our first chance of the half!
5:13 p.m.: Belgium just can't finish. America can't create any offensive momentum. This is a very edgy game.
5:12 p.m.: A hellacious Belgian cross dodges four pairs of feet, two of them Belgian, before going wide. Yeesh.
5:10 p.m.: "It's a sultry evening," breathes Ian Darke. Yes, I suppose it is.
5:08 p.m.: The air at Videology is thick with salt and vinegar. America are mostly confined to their own half so far.
5:05 p.m.: We begin with Tim Howard tipping a Belgian chance over the bar. This man is our lifeline right now.
5:03 p.m.: And we're back!
4:57 p.m.: I've spent most of this half-time wondering why the Detroit Pistons would possibly want to pay Jodie Meeks $19 million for three years.
4:49 p.m.: How we doin' so far, Pete?
My name's not Bob, but okay.
4:48 p.m.: 0-0 at halftime, for the sixth World Cup game in a row. The US has some talking to do.
4:47 p.m.: Belgium have taken more corners than there are fast-food chains making opportunistic tweets about this game.
4:45 p.m.: Three minutes of added time. Tim Howard just made another great save against Fake Prince Harry.
4:41 p.m.: Belgium have pressed hard but struggled to really create chances. A sloppy foul leads to their first yellow of the game, on Vincent Kompany.
4:38 p.m.: Best look at goal USA has had all game. Header goes wide, but boy was that good.
4:36 p.m.: That Prince Harry lookalike just unfairly brought down Beasley and now I want him in the stocks.
4:34 p.m.: Wire alumnus Philip Bump just IMed me to ask, "What time is soccer game start."
4:33 p.m.: Jones fires wide after being nicely set up by Dempsey's chest.
4:31 p.m.: After an injury, DeAndre Yedlin comes on for Fabian Johnson. This is a gamble for Klinsmann, apparently, who the commentators think should move Cameron over to right-back.
4:30 p.m.: We should forge a giant golden statue of Tim Howard.
4:28 p.m.: As Gonzalez bobbles the ball behind the goal for the upteenth Belgian corner, I utter my one-hundredth swear word of the game.
4:25 p.m.: The US defense, "currently creaking" according to Darke, allows a shot on an open goal that gets cleared off the line. LAWD.
4:23 p.m.: On the other hand, if America could stop getting caught by surprise Belgian counter-attacks over and over again, THAT'D BE GREAT.
4:22 p.m.: A rush of chances at both ends! America pressing harder now, although Dempsey and Bradley's passes keep getting intercepted.
4:20 p.m.: That was a legit chance from Cameron off a corner. I suddenly feel very alive.
4:17 p.m.: Some idiot on the field interrupts play for a second, and he didn't even have the dignity to take his clothes off.
4:16 p.m.: Well, Chicago is very into this game:
4:13 p.m.: Very jittery start to the game for America. The bar is nervous. Some strong defense from Jeff Cameron keeps us from getting hit on the counter by Belgium, who are very zippy so far.
4:11 p.m.: America just conceded its third corner with some incredibly sloppy defending.
4:08 p.m.: Lotta running down the wings right now. Whole lotta that.
4:05 p.m.: DaMarcus Beasley's old legs still work, as he makes a determined run up the left wing for no real reason, since there's no one for him to cross to, but he fires it over the bar just for good measure.
4:02 p.m.: All Belgium so far, as they get their second corner in two minutes.
4:01 p.m.: Belgium had a clear shot on goal with no defenders in the first minute, and would have scored but for Tim Howard's feet, but my nerves are fine, THANKS.
4:00 p.m.: I don't have any pizza this time :( but I did just eat a large bowl of popcorn.
3:56 p.m.: Number of American players singing along to the national anthem: 7 out of 11. Not bad!
3:55 p.m.: I declare the Belgian national anthem JAUNTY.
3:51 p.m.: Is everyone happy that Ian Darke is commentating again? Maybe he'll tell us that America's best chance of advancing is by scoring more goals than Belgium today.
3:50 p.m.: Videology is officially BUMPIN'. Luckily no one has said "I believe that we can win!" yet.
3:29 p.m.: Today I am live-blogging from a real life American bar filled with Americans here to cheer for their boys and maybe even say they believe that they can win! Match starts at 4, and while Jozy Altidore is available to play, he'll be starting on the bench. Is everyone excited?
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