USA vs Belgium Preview: World Cup 2014 Soccer Today

USA vs Belgium takes place on Tuesday as Jurgen Klinsmann's men look to cause a huge upset and progress to the World Cup 2014 quarter-finals. This Last 16 tie will be a fiercely contested affair, and although Belgium will be favorites to win this one, the United States have done fantastically well to progress from the so-called "Group of Death" and they will not be overwhelmed by the task at hand.

The game will start at 4 p.m. ET and can be watched on TV on the ESPN network.

Clint Dempsey
Clint Dempsey of the U.S. celebrates after scoring their first goal during their 2014 World Cup Group G soccer match against Ghana at the Dunas arena in Natal June 16, 2014. |

In team news, the United States will have Jozy Altidore back after two matches out with a hamstring injury. However, manager Jurgen Klinsmann may opt for an unchanged side.

Belgium meanwhile have a number of defensive injuries, with Vincent Kompany and Thomas Vermaelen both doubtful for today's big game. Laurent Ciman and Anthony Vanden Borre have both also been ruled out of the Last 16 tie, where as midfielder Steven Defour is suspended for today's game having been sent off against South Korea in Belgium's final group game.

The United States will be looking to win today to reach the World Cup quarter-finals for the first time since 2002. Belgium though will be looking to make the last 8 for the first time since way back in 1986.

Belgium have been hotly tipped as the dark horses of this year's World Cup. Although they are not being touted among the favorites for the title, they have a host of talent and top players in their squad, and on their day they would be a test for any team in the competition.

But despite being favorites for today's game, Belgium head coach Marc Wilmots understands that the United States will be difficult to defeat, and he says that his team are ready for war.

He has said ahead of the game, "Physically they are very strong, we are preparing for a war."

World Cup 2014 Football Soccer Belgium
Belgium's national team head coach Marc Wilmots (R) watches his players during a training session at Mineirao stadium in Belo Horizonte June 16, 2014. |

He has spoken of the need for his team to raise their game even more: "I am convinced that our level is going to be better. We are fresh and now we have reached the second round, we can play freely."

Meanwhile, USA manager Jurgen Klinsmann has said ahead of the game, "We have enough confidence now going into this game - a very special one, a knockout game. We have absolutely no fear at all. We feel like we are in a position now to challenge. We believe we have built a foundation in our team that we are able to beat them."

The United States' success so far has not gone unnoticed back home, and millions have been tuning in to watch their team navigate their way through the Group of Death – a group that included Germany, Portugal, as well as the USA's bogey team Ghana.

USA's Clint Dempsey has scored four goals in his nine World Cup appearances, and he needs just one more to equal Landon Donovan as the USA's all-time World Cup top scorer with five goals. USA fans will be hoping he can achieve that today, and if possible even surpass Donovan's total.

The USA against Belgium will kick off at 4 p.m. ET and can be watched on TV on the ESPN network.

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