United States pulls off late stunner against Ghana in World Cup opener

John Brooks
John Brooks was born to a U.S. serviceman stationed in Germany.
Credit: Getty Images

The United States held a tenuous 1-0 lead for 81 minutes before a deflating game-tying goal in the 82nd minute by Ghana looked to spell doom for the Americans’ hope at three points. The feeling lasted only four minutes.

The U.S. took their World Cup opener, 2-1, on a header by John Brooks in the 86th minute off a Graham Zusi corner kick. Both Brooks and Zusi were substitutes in the second half and both were making their World Cup debuts.

The United States opened the game in near-record fashion with the fastest goal in American World Cup history and the fifth-fastest overall. Clint Dempsey beat his man one-on-one and drilled a left footer into the right side of the net just 31 seconds into the contest.

At times it felt like the U.S. was holding on for its life the next 81 minutes before Andre Ayew converted on a beautiful back-heel pass from Asamoah Gyan in the 82nd minute.

All was not good for the Americans though, who lost Jozy Altidore to a hamstring injury in the first half. Altidore, the team’s biggest, most physical striker, pulled up lame chasing a ball down the left side in the 23rd minute. He will go for further tests Tuesday. Aron Johannsson replaced him at forward.

Follow Metro New York Sports Editor Mark Osborne on Twitter @MetroNYSports.


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