Photo by Omar Martinez/ISIphotos.com
If the United States Under-17 national team is to progress in the knockout stage of the FIFA U-17 World Cup, it will have to do so at the expense of the most impressive team of the tournament to date.
By virtue of its second-place finish in Group D, the U.S. U-17s have drawn Germany, which won Group E after defeating Ecuador, Panama and Burkina Faso by a combined score of 11-1.
A win over the Germans would be even more impressive considering the United States will be without its captain, Marc Pelosi, who was sent off in the final group game against New Zealand.
The U.S.-Germany clash in the Round of 16 is set for Thursday at 4 p.m. in Queretaro, Mexico.
Here are a few more items from the international soccer landscape:
SPAIN U-21S WIN EURO TITLE
There's reason to believe that Spain's reign over the international soccer world might be continuing for a little while longer.
The Spain Under-21 national team captured the European Championship over the weekend, defeating Switzerland, 2-0, in Saturday's final.
Soon-to-be Manchester United signing David de Gea earned the clean sheet for the Spaniards, who received goals from Athletic Bilbao's Ander Herrera and Barcelona's Thiago Alcantara to capture the title, their first U-21 Euro title since 1998.
HOST GERMANY OPENS WWC WITH WIN
Two-time defending FIFA Women's World Cup champion Germany opened its opening game of the 2011 tournament by defeating Canada, 2-1, on Sunday in Group A play.
Kerstin Garefrekes and Celia Okoyino Da Mbabi gave Germany a 2-0 lead before Canada star Christine Sinclair sliced the deficit in half on an 82nd-minute free kick at the Olympic Stadium in Berlin.
FRANCE WOMEN EDGE NIGERIA
Marie-Laure Delie's goal in the 56th minute held up, as France topped Nigeria, 1-0, in the opening match of the Women's World Cup.
France will look to shatter Canada's hopes in their second Group A match on Thursday, while Germany looks to to the same to Nigeria when they meet in their second group game.
Think the U.S. U-17s have a chance to top Germany? What do you think about the Spain U-21s capturing the European championship? Which two teams do you see progressing from the WWC's Group A?
Share your thoughts below.