Sixteen saves,
some of then very classy indeed, made Tim Howard the man of the match in USA vs Belgium whatever the winners could say about their match-winners.

But then the Belgians were actually magnanimous in victory. Vincent Kompany, an outstanding player and very likeable bloke from what we see of him on Twitter, tweeted this:

Two words.. TIM HOWARD #Respect #BelUSA

Respect to you, VK.

It has been a superb World Cup so far. Forget the squalid diving or play-acting Fred, Costa, Muller and Robben, the biting by Suarez and so on. There have been some truly wonderful games.

Belgium vs USA was one of them, played with skill, tempo and end-to-end excitement. The two sets of players got as close to observing the Corinthian spirit as any in the games I have seen. Kompany’s tweet says a lot.

Belgium – don’t forget, the readers’ poll show them now to be our team of choice – had better players in most positions, attacked more (especially in the second half) and created more chances. They didn’t quite have the sensational Never Say Die approach that saw men clambering upright after crunching tackles, showing breathtaking pace when retrieving the ball and truly menacing breakaway attacks.

And they didn’t have Tim Howard, at 35 still one of the Premier League’s best keepers. His saves made the USA resistance look simpler than it was. And the USA left the World Cup with Brazil 2014 feeling better for having had its players and supporters there.

Grant Tunkel, our Stateside correspondent, is promising words by tomorrow. Monsieur Salut has one for the USA: bravo.

I cannot locate a clip of Tim Howard in tears in a post-match interview. You may have more time to search so please post it below.

Matt's cartoon as adapted by Jake

Matt’s cartoon as adapted by Jake

And here’s another offer from our occasional competition sponsors at Campo Retro:

England, Spain, Italy, Portugal…all maybe out of the World Cup but these classics from @CampoRetro will last the test of time. Now £20 for 72 hours only. Offers ends 5pm Friday. NB: cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer and the offer ends at 5pm on Friday before the first quarter finals kicks off.

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Salut! Sunderland is written, illustrated and edited by - and principally for - supporters of Sunderland AFC. The site aims to be sufficiently literate and entertaining to appeal to people who do not follow SAFC but enjoy good football writing.

One Response to “Bye Bye America’s Pride: Kompany, Howard and respect” Subscribe

  1. Jeremy July 5, 2014 at 1:46 am #

    I thought Howard’s performance was one of the finest performances that I’ve ever seen at this level of football. He faced a more or less constant bombardment and his response was nothing short of magnificent. Apparently he made more saves in a single game than any keeper since the 1966 tournament. The stuff of which legends are made. Fine goalkeeper Howard and deserves a medal for his efforts. Quite superb.

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