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Berhalter: U.S. Has 'Nothing to Lose' at Azteca

  • Goal.com, Wednesday, August 5, 2009 4 PM
You can train at altitude and in poor air conditions for weeks on end, you can pump your body full of supplements, and you can pipe in a recreation of the crowd noise to get used to the din, but when you step on the field at Azteca with the sun at its highest point and the yellow smog haze at its thickest, all bets are off. "You try to do all the things you can do: taking the aspirin, the oxygen, all the stuff you try to do. But when you get there on game day ... it's not an easy proposition," explains former U.S. national team vet Gregg Berhalter.

Berhalter considers the enormous challenge something of a rite of passage for a U.S. player, with each wanting to be a part of the team that gets those elusive three points. "I remember when we went down there the last time we had a chance," the 36-year-old said. "We thought we were going to do it, everyone was saying we were going to do it, but we didn't do it. Every team now gets a crack at it, so it's kind of fun. There's really nothing to lose."

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