Dempsey delight at Green blunder
USA forward Clint Dempsey has admitted he could not believe his good fortune against England in Rustenburg on Saturday evening.
The Fulham striker had already been denied a decent chance when Jozy Altidore nicked Landon Donovan’s cross away from him as the United States were battling back against England.
But even Dempsey thought his speculative shot five minutes before half-time was not going to cause Robert Green a problem.
Instead, the hapless Green inexplicably allowed the ball to slip through his fingers and bobble into the net, to England’s complete shock and Dempsey’s total jubilation.
It earned the USA a 1-1 draw that leaves them well placed to reach the knockout phase.
"When I hit the shot I knew it was going on target and at the last second it moved a little bit," he said.
"I saw Green reaching for it but then I saw it go over the line. I was hoping the referee saw it too. Thankfully he did.
"It is one of those goals everyone else seems to get. You watch them and think ‘Why can I never get a goal like that’. Now I have."
Dempsey conceded England were the better side after the interval.
However, the United States continued to create chances and the 27-year-old claimed that if Altidore had spotted him square to his left when Green made the crucial second-half save that kept England in it, a repeat of that famous victory in 1950 would have been on the cards.
"In the second half we didn’t do a good job keeping possession," he said.
"They had some good opportunities and Tim came up with some big saves.
"But we had two excellent chances as well.
"When Jozy hit the post if he squared it to me or it had got a different bounce we could have scored."