Watch (TBT): How the USA beat Brazil 20 years ago

With the USA facing Brazil on Friday for the 19th time, we throw it back to the one U.S. win over the Selecao. It came in the semifinals of the 1998 Gold Cup, the defending World Cup champion having been invited as a guest team. Goalkeeper Kasey Keller saved spectacularly and Preki scored the decider for the Steve Sampson-coached USA.

Feb. 10, 1998 in Los Angeles
USA 1 Brazil 0. Goal: Preki 65.
USA -- Keller, Burns, Lalas, Pope, Agoos, Hejduk, Harkes, Jones, Moore, Wynalda (McBride, 81), Wegerle (Preki, 60).
Brazil -- Taffarel, Ze Maria, Junior Baiano, Goncalves, Mauro Silva (Doriva, 7), Junior, Flavio Conceicao (Marcos Assuncao, 71), Zinho, Sergio Manoel, Edmundo, Romario.
Att.: 12,298

Extended highlights:

6 comments about "Watch (TBT): How the USA beat Brazil 20 years ago".
  1. frank schoon, September 6, 2018 at 10:02 a.m.

    Preki had more skill in big toe than the current US team combined. What happened? You would think we would have moved on and produced so many greater and better skilled players since 20 onward. I'm not seeing it.. That particular win 20years ago is a meaningless when you look at the overal picture of player development..

  2. Frans Vischer, September 6, 2018 at 11:42 a.m.

    You got to be kidding, Frank! Preki was a wonderful player, but this current crop of US youth are very talented. I'm really excited about all the youbgsters getting playing time. I just hope Sarachan doesn't bring back Altidor, Bradley, Gonzalez, and the majority of the previous group.

    By the way, you go on about Louie Van Gaal as such a wonderful coach- Cruijff detested him, and refused to have him coach Ajax. I didn't like the way Van Gaal's Dutch team played at the 2014 WC- much too hesitant, afraid to go forward, always playing it safe. Other than the win over Spain, they were boring. 

  3. frank schoon replied, September 6, 2018 at 12:29 p.m.

    Frans, I don't want to get into the weeds here but let us just take one techncial aspect, kicking/passing techniques, more specifically crosses. The players today are unable to make a decent cross and have no clue of how to give a proper "play-in' pass forwards. Preki , of course being Yugoslavian comes from a part of the world where he learned to play is known as "the Brazil of Europe". Furthermore the skill level in small spaces of American players is atrocious....
    Let me explain to you about van Gaal. He is not my cup of tea, he's too theoretical, too controlling in how he wants things done. Cruyff is totally opposite, he plays it loose but with control, in order words he likes an organized chaos.
    As far as the WC'14, van Gaal did an FANTASTIC job considering this dutch team was worst ,weakest, poorest in talent team ever to be assembled. He had no attack but some old players like van Persie and Robben, there was nothing else.  Because the dutch were so weak offensively, and had a terrible defense and were so bad that they were forced  to play a defensive system  with 5  defenders, due to lack of good defenders,  and hope for a counter attack. This is unheard  of in the annals of dutch soccer for we are known attacking soccer  not  a defensive,counterattacking soccer. As a matter fact, the dutch look down on this type of soccer. This is why Cruyff stated after this WC to just forget about this WC. 
    Realize after this WC14 ,Holland didn't qualify for the Euro'16 or the WC'18 getting beat by countries like Iceland...we got nothing... When you take that into account than you can appreciate what van Gaal did a phenomenal job with the garbage he had to work with at the WC'14 and still come in 3rd place.
    I'm not a van Gaal fan, I don't like his style of coaching, but anyone with a half a brain and knows  knows he's been very successful as a coach. 

  4. frank schoon replied, September 6, 2018 at 12:36 p.m.

    One more thing, Cruyff didn't like van Gaal to come back to Ajax as a coach, for he blamed van Gaal for ruining the Ajax youth program back in the early 90's. Just because Cruyff doesn't like van Gaal , like I do, that doesnt' mean he isn't a good had to do with style of coaching and development. Both think alike when it comes to soccer it is just how they go about it ,lies the differerence. Don't forget van Gaal came to Cruyff when he coached Barcelona to learn from him and stayed at Cruyff's home. 

  5. Frans Vischer, September 6, 2018 at 4:39 p.m.

    Frank, Van Gaal has won champioships, so of course he's been successful. So has Moreno. But neither of them ever won praise for their style. The Dutch defense wasn't great in '14, (it rarely is,) but individually these were not garbage players. They played a style that suited Van Gaal. It was unatractive, and neither the players or fans liked it. Hopefully Koeman can do something with the new crop of young players. 
    As for the US team, I've been happily surprised by a few of the young players. I agree with you, too many American MLS players lack the basics, but I see impreovements every year, and I think this is a special group who'se time has come. Hopefully...
    By the way, I got to meet Cruijff once. Quite a thrill!

  6. frank schoon replied, September 6, 2018 at 5:13 p.m.

    Van Gaal has won lots of praise, just look what he did with Ajax in the 90's taking a very young team, Vander Sar, Davids, Overmars, de Boer brothers, Seedorf, and a couple others to win the European cup. He was the one who introduced what you see so often today coaches taking notes during the game, something that was never seen before.  He coached many great teams, like Barcelona, Holland, Ajax, Man Utd, Bayern, where he introduced dutch soccer and made Schweinsteiger, a former winger, into the player he is today. As far as garbage players, they were garbage as compared to what Holland always had...These players are the remnants of why Holland has done so bad for not even qualifying for EK16 and WC18. There is no talent left, we have become a second tier country. We use to have dutch players playing for great teams world wide but now it is small potataoes, basic secondary teams...
    US soccer ,technically, has not improved, in the past 50 years. We still bring in foreign players whose days are basically over in Europe but perform well. 
    Cruyff's brother use to stay over at my house here in Reston and have some interesting talks. he himself is a very good player. Once he decided to leave Ajax , Ruud Krol took over his position at left back.
    Currently Ajax has  a couple nice players, Frenkie de Jong, 21 which Barcelona would like to have. Koeman , hopefully will help, but it going to take time. I hope this new generation of Dutch players with good coaching will produce a couple of stars, for when all we have is Robben and Van Persie who basically need walkers....

Next story loading loading..

Discover Our Publications