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Throwback Thursday: USA Upsets Portugal in Group Play of 2002 FIFA World Cup

SUWON - JUNE 5:  Luis Figo of Portugal challenges Brian McBride of the USA during the first half of the Portugal v USA, Group D, World Cup Group Stage match played at the Suwon World Cup Stadium, Suwon, South Korea on June 5, 2002. USA won the match 3 - 2. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images
Kyle NewportFeatured ColumnistJune 5, 2014

The 2014 FIFA World Cup is quickly approaching, so United States soccer fans can get ready for it by reliving some of the team's best moments from recent World Cups.

On this date in 2002, the United States upset Portugal in their opening match of the FIFA World Cup by the score of 3-2.

John O'Brien, Jorge Costa and Brian McBride each tallied first-half goals to give the United States a 3-0 lead. Portugal eventually narrowed the deficit to one goal, but the United States held on.

The victory turned out to be a big momentum boost for the squad. The United States finished in second place in Group D, and they would wind up making a run to the quarterfinals, which made it the squad's best finish since 1930.

Twelve years later, the United States and Portugal will once again face off in group play on June 22. This time, Cristiano Ronaldo will be playing for Portugal.


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