It had been a treacherously winding road. The Americans had been utterly unconvincing in the semifinal round of World Cup qualifying, trying to execute and adjust to newish head coach Jurgen Klinsmanns tactics, methods and wishes. The final round began with a disheveling 2-1 loss at Honduras. POLL Who was the best USA player vs. Mexico? Tim Howard Landon Donovan Other Ahead of their next two games, a minor mutiny seemed to break out, as a dozen or so players anonymously griped to Sporting News about all the changes Klinsmann had brought. But they rallied. An impressive home win over Costa Rica while getting buried in snow and a rare away tie against Mexico put them back on a track. Then they reeled off three consecutive wins over Jamaica, Panama and Honduras, setting them up to clinch on Friday. They lost to Costa Rica 3-1 and so clinched on Tuesday instead. Klinsmann no longer looks lost. Instead, he looks like what the United States Soccer Federation had hoped for when they hired him — the guy to take them to the next level. This is a huge, huge evening for all of us and were all extremely proud of this team, said Klinsmann following the game, his wisps of blond hair flattened from whatever had flowed over them. It means a lot to me, like it means to all of us.
USA can finally breathe, celebrate
Kiwis have 6-0 lead over Americans. Comments 1 Oracle Team USA competes in Race 8 in the America’s Cup in San Francisco Bay on Saturday. (Eric Risberg / Associated Press / September 14, 2013) Also Associated Press AP September 14, 2013, 4:08 p.m. SAN FRANCISCO Emirates Team New Zealand nearly capsized in Race 8 of the America’s Cup, allowing defending champion Oracle Team USA to sail away to a 52-second victory Saturday on windy San Francisco Bay. In the most heart-stopping moment of the regatta, the Kiwis’ 131-foot wing sail didn’t pop to the correct side, apparently because of a lack of pressure in the hydraulic system, as the crew tried to tack on the American boat to keep its slight lead. The 72-foot catamaran began to tip over, with its starboard hull rising high into the air. The boat appeared to come within a few degrees of going over before the crew got the wing to pop and the boat splashed down. Oracle skipper Jimmy Spithill did a great job of executing a crash tack to get clear of the Kiwi boat while it was hanging in the air. Because the American boat was coming in on favored starboard tack, Team New Zealand was penalized. The near-capsize had already done in the Kiwis, and slowing to clear the penalty allowed Oracle to sail well ahead. Had the boat capsized and been seriously damaged it could have been catastrophic for the Kiwis.