DeMerit out to emulate US history boys
Jay DeMerit has challenged the current USA team to become heroes by emulating the FIFA World Cup™ success of their 1950 counterparts in toppling England.
It was 60 years ago that the Americans caused one of the biggest ever footballing shocks in defeating England 1-0 in Brazil thanks to a goal from Joe Gaetjens. Now coach Bob Bradley's side will have to pull off another major upset if they are to win in Rustenburg this weekend.
But DeMerit believes USA can take heart from their FIFA Confederations Cup success in South Africa 12 months ago when they reached the final before losing 3-2 to Brazil. The defender said: "It is a massive opportunity for us and we are under no illusions that the world is going to be watching.
"This is one of those flag games where people say, 'I'll watch that one in the first round'. We understand what it means and what it means if we were to beat them. That is a fantastic marker for US soccer, if we can build on the performance of last summer by beating a world power like England.
"It is chance to go into the history books like the 1950 side, and it is things like that prove what can happen. We haven't watched any film of that 1950 win. I am not sure they have it available. But everyone knows the names of those players and, as a team, as a collective, we need to continue to believe."
DeMerit will come face to face with Wayne Rooney, whose temperament is again under the spotlight after his yellow card against the Platinum Stars. But he will not try and wind up the Manchester United star, who was sent off against Portugal in the 2006 finals in Germany.
DeMerit said: "A lot has been said about him over the years as far as temperament goes. I think Wayne more than anyone knows that people are going to try and use that against him. He is seasoned enough now to hope that will not be a factor and that is the way he is thinking.
"That's not our worry. My worry as an individual is not to try and wind him up and try to get him sent off. That is the referee's job and that is Rooney's job as far as keeping himself under control. I don't think it is as easy as people think it is to wind him up. He is a competitive guy, he is an aggressive guy, he wears his heart on his sleeve."
Date: 2010-06-09 11:05:52