The U.S. Has a Wide-Open Shot for the Quarterfinals ... and Chris Wondolowski Misses

Slate's soccer blog.
July 1 2014 6:05 PM

The U.S. Has a Wide-Open Shot for the Quarterfinals ... and Chris Wondolowski Misses

Chris Wondolowski
SALVADOR, BRAZIL - JULY 01: Chris Wondolowski of the United States misses a chance against Thibaut Courtois of Belgium during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Round of 16 match between Belgium and the United States at Arena Fonte Nova on July 1, 2014 in Salvador, Brazil. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

The U.S. has no business beating Belgium. The Red Devils have dominated the entire match, and the United States has been in desperation mode for 90 minutes and change. But in extra time of the second half, Jermaine Jones sent a header to the feet of Chris Wondolowski right in front of goal. Wondolowski has made a career in Major League Soccer of punching in goals from close range. But this time, he sent the ball flying well over the bar. Oof.

As Taylor Twellman mentioned on the ESPN broadcast, today's miss was eerily reminiscent of Wondolowski's miscue in the 2011 Gold Cup against Panama.

In extra time, Belgium finally broke through and scored the goal they'd been pushing for all game. The Red Devils now lead 1–0.

Josh Levin is Slate's executive editor.