Even the decisive penalty, in Zimmerman’s estimation, was the result of some veteran skill. He said after the game that he didn’t see Bale cross his path in the penalty area as he prepared to clear the ball as it bounced past him. He added that he believes Bale intentionally positioned his leg to shoot the foul.
“I think it was one of those where he probably puts his leg out not for the ball but to try to stop me from kicking the ball,” Zimmerman said. “Clever move. I would have liked to see him out of the corner of my eye trying to clear the ball. It was instinctive. It was quick. A little frustrated with that.
The Americans will have to quickly regain their bearings. They face England, who beat Iran 6-2 to top Group B on Friday night.
With Wales bunkered in front of their goal, employing five defenders and piling the rest of the team close, the Americans, who enjoyed two-thirds of possession in the first half, spent much of that time to pass the ball from side to side. , trying to find an opening, waiting for the Welsh to slip or doze off for a moment.
The moment came, finally, in the 36th minute. Pulisic received the ball at a run and rushed through the heart of the Welsh defence, taking two defenders with him. Simultaneously, Weah made a blistering run towards goal from the wing. Pulisic delivered a perfectly weighted pass into the penalty area, where Weah stuttered and sent the ball into the net with the outside of his right cleat.
Weah then rolled away from the goal and slid to a corner flag, where his teammates engulfed him in celebration.
“It’s a great feeling,” said Weah, whose father, George, won FIFA World Player of the Year and a Ballon d’Or but has never featured in a FIFA World Cup. world. “He lives this moment through me.”
#good #start #slips #fingers #Americans #opener #World #Cup