NATAL, Brazil It s almost here.
The United States takes on Ghana at 5 p.m. Central time Monday in the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
The anticipation has been building for nearly seven months and on Monday, the United Stateswill start its journey through the Group of Death. On Sunday, Jurgen Klinsmann, Michael Bradley, and team captain Clint Dempsey took final questions, divulging little but looking calm and in Klinsmann s case, downright jovial.
There were questions about the refereeing thus far.
We re aware of what s going on and what we have to do, Dempsey said maybe blinking once. We ll be prepared and ready to go.
There were questions about feeling jealous seeing the Brazilian soccer culture in contrast to the American culture.
It s great to see the passion the fans have in this country, Dempsey said. And the game in the United States is growing.
There were questions about the weather. It s rained so much in Natal that some have considered building an ark.
The weather is what it is, Bradley said. As players, that s not something we can control. The game played in this stadium, the field held up really well, we ll get a better feel for it when we go out to train today.
When a journalist asked Klinsmann a question in Portuguese, the U.S. coach didn t ask for a translator at first, opting to decipher the question on his own. He looked like he was doing well until the question ended.
Okay, I need these, Klinsmann said picking up the headphones for translation. I almost made it until right at the end.
The fact of it is, there s nothing left to say. The U.S. has been preparing for this match for the past month. Klinsmann chose his 23-man roster roster 25 days ago. The players will play, the coaches will coach, and the rest of us will watch.
If the game resembles the 11 thatpreceded it, it s going to be incredible.