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World Cup: USA's day of reckoning

Not even the Suarez suspension can take the attention from where it belongs--on the pitch. Group G concludes to day with the United States trying to at least draw against Germany, and Portugal taking on a Ghana side that seems to be falling apart.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Morning all!

SB Nation has a World Cup reset for us, Good Morning Brazil. Some guy named Messi had a pretty good day, and Iran even scored, so for the first time since 1998, all 32 teams in the World Cup scored at least one goal .

Group G--Noon Eastern

Group situation: Germany 4 (GD +4), United States 4 (GD +1), Ghana 1 (GD -1), Portugal 1 (GD -4)

United States vs Germany, Recife (where it's raining).

The USA was within one last counterattack of being through in this group, but now they have to take on Germany knowing that (a) a win guarantees they finish top of the group; (b) a draw guarantees they finish second.  Rather than replicate everything the Stars and Stripes columnists at SB Nation have already done, I'll just say--for more on this match, go here!   There is even a graphic thingy showing which teams go through for various scenarios.

Be aware that there are a couple of scenarios that could result in Portugal and the USA finishing tied for second, in which case a name would have to be drawn from a hat.  These are a Germany 3-1 win, and Portugal 3-0 win, or a Germany 3-0 win and Portugal 2-0 win.

Prediction: Germany 2-1 USA.

Portugal vs Ghana, Brasilia

Portugal's last minute goal against the USA has given them a lifeline, and the chaos in the Ghana camp might throw them another one.  First there was the spectacle of a convoy heading through Brasilia delivering cash owed to the Ghanian players (for those of you who don't know, African football federations are notorious for holding up or diverting payments, so cash really is king), then this morning it was reported Sulley Muntari and Kevin-Prince Boateng have been suspended and have left the Ghana team.  Not exactly the way you want to approach this sort of match.

Portugal do get Pepe back (you can decide if that is a good thing or not) and seemed to find their best attacking group with Eder, Nani and CR7 after Helder Postiga went down.  Who knows what we will see from Ghana--I honestly have no idea.

Prediction: Portugal 3-1 Ghana

(if my predictions are both correct, USA advances)

Group H--4PM Eastern

Algeria v Russia, Curitiba

Algeria are another side that can blame themselves a bit for not having already qualified--they got too defensive against Belgium and allowed two late goals.  Russia have been poor in both of their matches.  Still, a win over the Desert Foxes would put them in the round of 16.  I really like Algeria--they have some excellent players and if Brahimi and Feghouli have good days, this should be an easy one for the Fennecs.  The longer Russia stays around, the more Fabio Capello will figure they can sneak a late goal to get through.

Prediction: Algeria 2-1 Russia

Belgium v South Korea, Sao Paolo

If I have high praise for Algeria, I have none for South Korea.  Apart from Honduras, they've been probably the worst team here, looking poor in a poor group.  Belgium rode their luck in game one, found their confidence in game two, and in this match they basically want to make sure they top the group.  Any Algeria win and Belgian loss puts Algeria in first place.

Prediction: Belgium 2-0 South Korea