One of the best analysis of the US loss to the Czech republic comes from the Sports Economist, World Cup – the long view. Instead of being firmly rooted in the moment, in despair and looking to hand out blame, he puts it nicely into context. Only us few US fans fancied our side against the Czechs, despite history and the prevailing consensus. But, that’s part of the essence of being American.
While the rest of the world is happy maintaining the balance between the Great Powers, we’re trying to change the status quo. We want to make our own impression in the history books, not content to accept being written off. In our optimism, we dismiss any chance of failure, no matter how real it may be, and that’s what made this opening loss harder to take.
In the long run, each cup run will become part of our growing soccer history, much like the 98 and ’02 runs already have. Some bitter and others sweet, but part of an ongoing chronicle. Other countries, notably Spain, have been at this much longer than we have with just as much to show for it. When the cup is over, we have a growing domestic league to follow, and the inevitable build up to the next World Cup.