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U.S. MEN'S NATIONAL TEAM

June 23, 2014
WORLD CUP NOTES
Klinsmann does not like the fact that Germany gets an extra day of rest

By Michael Lewis
Big Apple Soccer Editor

SAO PAULO, Brazil -- Jurgen Klinsmann is none too happy with the World Cup schedule. He feels that Germany has received an unfair advantage over the United States as the teams prepare for their Thursday confrontation in Recife.

The Germans played on Saturday, the Americans on Sunday, which gives the European side an extra day's rest.

"We have one day less to recover," he said. "They played (Saturday), we played (Sunday). We played in the Amazon, they played in the locations where they don't have to travel as much. Everything was done for the big favorites to move on. We have to do it the tough way but we're going to do it the tough way.Ē

Klinsmann was not available to the media on Monday after the team's return, but the team issued a quote sheet from an interview with the U.S. coach.

Surprise! Surprise!

CONCACAF has to be the surprise confederation of the Cup. The confederation is 4-2-2 after Mexico's 3-1 triumph over Croatia Monday. The Mexicans and Costa Rica have booked spots in the second round. The U.S. will try to duplicate their efforts when they take on Germany in its Group G finale.

"There are surprises that come from our region, from CONCACAF," Klinsmann said. "We want to do the next little step that we have to take in order to get there. We always said itís going to be a tournament full of surprises, full of challenges and itís proven that way. But itís a tournament where you have to grow from game-to-game and you have to raise the bar every game youíre going to play going forward. Thatís the key to being in this tournament as long as you can.Ē

Ronaldo: maybe we're an average team

For someone who basks in the spotlight, it was a big surprise to hear that Portugal captain and striker Cristiano Ronaldo talked some reality about his team.

"Maybe we're an average team," he told Portuguese TV. "It would be a lie to say that we are a 'top' team. We have many limitations and suffer from injuries such as with Pepe (who was suspended) and (Fabio) Coentrao (out of the tournament with a thigh injury). This limits us a lot. We have a very limited team and we are not at the best level. This does not enable you to beat top teams.

"There are no miracles. We knew we would have a tough group, with perhaps teams better than us. I never thought we could be world champions, we have to be humble and know our level. I'm not a hypocrite, I never thought we could win the tournament.Ē

   
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