The 32 team field for the 2014 World Cup is finally set. It has been a long road for some of the qualified teams like France, Mexico, and Portugal, but that doesn’t matter anymore because everything is wiped clean. The United States breezed through their qualifying in CONCACAF, but they look to be placed in a tough group no matter what. Since the US didn’t qualify for pot one, they will be placed in a pot with Mexico, Costa Rica, Honduras, Iran, Australia, Japan. and South Korea. This will be the weakest pot and it makes it difficult for the US to draw a weaker team because most of them are in this group.
The US will face one of the top teams in the world from pot one no matter what, but they hope it is Switzerland. Switzerland is obviously the weakest team from the top pot. Don’t get me wrong, Switzerland is a solid team, but compared to the likes of Spain and the other top teams, Switzerland looks like the best case scenario. The pot filled with the African nations, Ecuador, Chile, and most likely France looks to be filled with tricky teams. The US do not want to see Ghana again. They have ended the Americans hopes and dreams for two straight World Cups. Cameroon or Algeria are the best possible draws from this group. Neither has too much of an attack, and the US could play their style versus either of these teams.
The European pot has some dangerous scenarios for the United States. Netherlands, Italy, and England are usually pot one teams that have slipped down to this pot. The US want to avoid all three of these teams especially the Netherlands. The US have already beaten Bosnia-Herzegovina and Russia, but both of those teams are sneaky good. Croatia or Greece are defiantly the United States preferred teams to face. Greece plays a defensive game, and Croatia will be missing star striker Mario Mandzukic for at least one game, possibly more.
These were all best case scenarios for the US, but the threat of a group of death is very possible. It will be tough for the US to avoid a great team from pot one since there is really only one out. I think the worst case scenario for the US would be getting paired with Argentina, France, and Netherlands. If this group were to happen, the US would be scrapping for points. No matter what group the US is put into it is going to be a tough road to make the knockout stage.