Ghana and the USA are no strangers. This will be the third World Cup that they have faced each other, with the last meeting in South Africa resulting in a 2-1, last-16 win for the Black Stars.
What transpired in the quarter-final has become the stuff of World Cup legend. Ghana looked set to become the first African nation to reach the semi-finals of a World Cup when Luis Suarez handled on the line. The Uruguayan was duly sent off only for Asamoah Gyan to miss the resultant penalty. Ghana went on to lose the penalty shootout.
The West Africans are out to put things right in Brazil, then. But they face a mountain of a task to even emerge from a group including the USA, Portugal and Germany.
|Ghana vs. USA TV and Live Stream Information|
|Ghana vs. USA||11 p.m. (BST) /6 p.m. (ET)||ESPN/BBC||BBC iPlayer/ESPN Player|
That's why this clash will likely end the World Cup campaign of one of its participants. It is unlikely that the loser of this tie would go on to then beat the Germans and the Portuguese.
Gyan will return as one of Ghana's key men, and he will be ably assisted by Kevin-Prince Boateng and Michael Essien for this Natal clash.
|Ghana vs. USA Prediction|
|Gyan (2)||Beasley, Dempsey|
The USA are without Landon Donovan after Jurgen Klinsmann brought down the curtain on a career that brought 156 caps and 57 goals. The Americans have a goldmine of experience in their ranks, however. Clint Dempsey, DaMarcus Beasley and Tim Howard all hold more than 100 caps and are all likely to start against Ghana.
Ghana are considered to be among the strongest African nations and demonstrated their firepower as they smashed 25 goals on their way to the World Cup.
By comparison, the USA breezed to the World Cup, winning their CONCACAF group with seven wins from 10. Their formidable home form saw them win all five qualifiers at home without conceding. The only defeats came to fellow World Cup qualifiers Honduras and Costa Rica.
Ghana topped their qualifying group, their only loss coming away to Zambia. In the final qualifier, they recorded a remarkable 6-1 defeat of Egypt in Kumasi before losing 2-1 in Cairo to secure an aggregate victory.
In one of the quirkier statistics of the tournament, The Independent's Charles Reynolds reports that Gyan will surpass Cameroonian legend Roger Milla as the top African scorer in World Cup history if he scores two goals in Brazil.
We just hope he can match Milla's iconic goal celebrations.
One factor that may play a key role in proceedings could be the weather conditions. As tweeted by Fox Soccer, the pitch was inundated with torrential rain Sunday. Which side copes best with the conditions may well prevail.
But given the importance of this fixture to both nations, they will enter with caution, eager to avoid the defeat that would represent a kiss of death at the tournament. Brazil has provided a hatful of goals so far, so it's difficult to see a goalless draw being played out.
That's why we have this one down as a score draw. And whether that will be enough for either side is unlikely, but then again, who would have predicted that Costa Rica would beat Uruguay. This year's football extravaganza is providing regular shocks, and Group G could well provide the next one.
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