Sports

10:36am

Thu June 26, 2014
The Two-Way

Weather, History Muddy The Field For U.S.-Germany Showdown

Jermaine Jones and other members of the U.S. men's national team train in Manaus, Brazil. Fitness may be a crucial factor in the U.S.-Germany game on Thursday in Recife .
Raphael Alves AFP/Getty Images

It's do or die (or tie) time for the United States today in the World Cup.

The U.S. team plays its final game in group play against world No. 2-ranked Germany at noon EDT in the Brazilian seaside city of Recife. The stakes couldn't be higher, and the intrigue is all here, folks.

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10:16am

Thu June 26, 2014
The Two-Way

FIFA Bites Back: Uruguay's Luis Suarez Suspended 9 Games

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 2:39 pm

Uruguay's Luis Suarez holds his teeth after biting Italy's Giorgio Chiellini's shoulder during Tuesday's World Cup match between Italy and Uruguay in Brazil. FIFA has banned Suarez for nine games and four months over the incident.
Ricardo Mazalan AP

Two days after the sporting world reacted in shock to what appeared to be a case of one elite soccer player biting another, FIFA, the sport's governing body, announced that it's suspending Uruguayan star Luis Suarez for nine matches and fining him 100,000 Swiss francs (about $112,000).

The suspension comes two days before Uruguay faces Colombia in the round of 16 on Saturday. It begins immediately, FIFA says. Suarez is also banned from any soccer activity for four months.

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9:55am

Thu June 26, 2014
The Two-Way

Will Ferrell, Teddy Goalsevelt Pump Up U.S. Fans

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 2:44 pm

Comedian Will Ferrell was unveiled as the surprise "secret weapon" of U.S. Soccer, on the eve of a pivotal World Cup match against Germany. Ferrell promised to "bite every German player, if I have to."
YouTube

"I'm not going to lie to you — I'm not in the best shape," Will Ferrell told American soccer fans in Brazil last night, after being announced as a mock World Cup replacement by U.S. Soccer.

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6:12am

Thu June 26, 2014
Sports

Croatian Tennis Player Mishears Press Question

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 2:19 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm David Greene. It's been a tough week for Latvian tennis player Ernests Gulbis. Yesterday, he was knocked out of competition at Wimbledon. And Monday at a press conference, he was asked about the idea of getting rid of umpires, letting players referee their own games. He gave a lengthy answer before realizing he had misheard the question.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

ERNESTS GULBIS: Get rid of umpires?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Yes, get rid of...

GULBIS: My God, I thought vampires.

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5:23am

Thu June 26, 2014
Sports

U.S. Needs To Win Or Tie Germany To Advance In World Cup Play

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 2:19 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

In case you have not heard, David, it's perfect fine to take this day off work. The coach of the U.S. soccer team has published an excuse note for Americans to send their employers saying they were busy World Cup.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

But Steve, we don't know if employers will accept this. We do know the United States plays Germany. The game in Recife, Brazil helps determine who escapes the so-called Group of Death and moves on to the knockout round.

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5:06pm

Wed June 25, 2014
Sports

A Warning For Soccer Parents: Wait To Let Your Kids Go Headfirst

Originally published on Wed June 25, 2014 9:30 pm

A new campaign is working to begin a national conversation on the dangers of heading the ball in youth soccer. To find out more, Melissa Block speaks with former U.S. women's soccer team player Cindy Parlowe Cone, who has grappled with post-concussion syndrome.

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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4:15pm

Wed June 25, 2014
Latin America

A World Cup Surprise: Arias In The Heart Of The Amazon

Originally published on Wed June 25, 2014 9:30 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Of all the Brazilian cities staging games at the World Cup, none is more exotic than Manaus. It's nestled in the heart of the Amazon jungle. You can only get there by plane or boat - an unlikely place to host soccer games. And there's something else in Manaus that's unexpected - a centuries-old theater and opera house. NPR's Russell Lewis took a break from soccer and paid a visit.

RUSSELL LEWIS, BYLINE: The first thing you notice about the Teatro Amazonas is how lovely it is. Then the beauty melts away and it's what you hear.

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4:15pm

Wed June 25, 2014
Law

Removing $765 Million Ceiling, NFL And Players Settle A Second Time

Originally published on Wed June 25, 2014 9:30 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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4:15pm

Wed June 25, 2014
Sports

In Game Against Germany, Team USA Bears A German Strain Of Its Own

Originally published on Wed June 25, 2014 9:30 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. When the U.S. takes on Germany tomorrow in the World Cup, it will do so not only with a German coach, Jurgen Klinsmann, but also with five dual-national German-American players who introduce themselves in videos put out by U.S. soccer.

JOHN BROOKS: I'm John Brooks.

JERMAINE JONES: I'm Jermaine Jones.

FABIAN JOHNSON: I'm Fabian Johnson.

JULIAN GREEN: I'm Julian Green.

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2:51pm

Wed June 25, 2014
The Two-Way

U.S. Vs. Germany In The World Cup: What To Look For

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 8:28 am

U.S. midfielder Jermaine Jones warms up during a training session at Recife's Pernambuco Arena Wednesday, one day before the Americans face Germany in a decisive Group G soccer match. The game begins at noon, ET.
Patrik Stollarz AFP/Getty Images

Anticipation is building for the U.S. Men's National Team's showdown with Germany on Thursday. The Americans need a win or a tie to decide their own fate; a loss would mean they need help to advance to the round of 16.

The game will start at noon ET — when the other Group G match, between Portugal and Ghana, also starts. You can follow the game or just comment on the action here at The Two-Way. For now, we've rounded up analysis and predictions.

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