History suggests that Recife group decider will end all-square.
USA coach Jurgen Klinsmann has denied that his side will play for a draw in their final group game against Germany but past history suggests that when two teams need only a point to fulfill the ambitions of both, a stalemate usually ensues.
We have the draw priced up at 17/10 in Recife, even though not a single one of their nine previous meetings have ended all-square. Germany have won six but the United States came out on top on the last occasion they met 12 months ago when Clint Dempsey scored twice.
The former Fulham striker has found the net in both games so far at this year’s World Cup and is 11/1 to be first scorer against Joachim Low’s side.
The Americans would already have been home and dry in the last 16 had they been able to hang on for another 30 seconds against Portugal but can’t afford to have any hangover for easily their toughest task to date as this will be a very different German side that the one beaten narrowly in the RFK Stadium 12 months ago.
Per Mertesacker and Miroslav Klose are the only likely survivors from the starting line-up that day and they’ll be looking to put one over Klinsmann, who has been critical of the national team in the past.
But they will have to be patient as the USA will almost certainly congest midfield and try to catch their opponents on the break. Germany did beat Portugal 4-0 in their first game but the Portuguese rather shot themselves in the foot.
Ghana exposed deficiencies in the German ranks that better teams will exploit more ruthlessly and Low will just want to get through this game with as little damage as possible in terms of injuries and yellow cards so they can concentrate on their first game in the knockout stages.
The odds look stacked heavily in favour of an even number of goals being scored in this one at 8/15.
The match kicks off at 5pm UK time on Thursday June 26th at the Arena Pernambuco, Recife.