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Germany beats the United States 1-0 in Group G

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Germany beats the United States 1-0 in Group G
United States' Clint Dempsey runs into Germany's Jerome Boateng during the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Ricardo Mazalan)
The flags of the United States and Germany are seen in the rain before the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: Clint Dempsey (L) and Tim Howard (C) of the United States look on in the tunnel prior to the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Group G match between USA and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Alex Livesey - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
The team from the United States pose for their team photo before the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
Germany's head coach Joachim Loew, left, and United States' head coach Juergen Klinsmann chat as they walk into the stadium prior to the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)
United States' Jermaine Jones warms up before the group G World Cup soccer match between the United States and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: Head coach Jurgen Klinsmann of the United States looks on during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil group G match between the United States and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
The team from Germany pose for their team photo before the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: (L-R) Goalkeeper coach Andreas Koepke, assistant coach Hansi Flick and head coach Joachim Loew of Germany look on during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil group G match between the United States and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Martin Rose/Getty Images)
US defender Fabian Johnson (L) and Germany's forward Lukas Podolski vie for the ball during a Group G football match between US and Germany at the Pernambuco Arena in Recife during the 2014 FIFA World Cup on June 26, 2014. AFP PHOTO / NELSON ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Germany's Thomas Mueller, right, takes a shot which is stopped by United States' goalkeeper Tim Howard as United States' Omar Gonzalez moves into the playt during the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: Jermaine Jones of the United States controls the ball against Philipp Lahm of Germany during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil group G match between the United States and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)
Germany's Thomas Mueller, right, takes a shot which is stopped by United States' goalkeeper Tim Howard as United States' Omar Gonzalez moves into the playt during the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
United States' Matt Besler chases Germany's Mesut Ozil along the sidelines during the group G World Cup soccer match between the United States and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: Clint Dempsey of the United States challenges Mesut Oezil of Germany during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil group G match between the United States and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: Clint Dempsey of the United States is challenged by Jerome Boateng (L) and Mats Hummels of Germany during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil group G match between the United States and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Martin Rose/Getty Images)
US midfielder Brad Davis (L) and Germany's defender Benedikt Hoewedes vie for the ball during a Group G football match between US and Germany at the Pernambuco Arena in Recife during the 2014 FIFA World Cup on June 26, 2014. AFP PHOTO / NELSON ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: Jermaine Jones of the United States is challenged by Benedikt Hoewedes of Germany during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil group G match between the United States and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: (L-R) Jozy Altidore, John Brooks, Julian Green and Aron Johannsson of the United States look on from the bench during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil group G match between the United States and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: Philipp Lahm of Germany is challenged by Clint Dempsey (L) and Alejandro Bedoya of the United States during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil group G match between the United States and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)
US defender Omar Gonzalez (L) and Germany's forward Miroslav Klose vie for the ball during a Group G football match between US and Germany at the Pernambuco Arena in Recife during the 2014 FIFA World Cup on June 26, 2014. AFP PHOTO / NELSON ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: Omar Gonzalez of the United States reacts after being defeated by Germany 1-0 during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil group G match between the United States and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)
Germany's defender Philipp Lahm (L) and US midfielder Michael Bradley vie for the ball during a Group G football match between US and Germany at the Pernambuco Arena in Recife during the 2014 FIFA World Cup on June 26, 2014. AFP PHOTO / NELSON ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
US midfielder Kyle Beckerman (R) and Germany's defender Philipp Lahm (C) vie for the ball during a Group G football match between US and Germany at the Pernambuco Arena in Recife during the 2014 FIFA World Cup on June 26, 2014. AFP PHOTO / NELSON ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Germany's forward Thomas Mueller (C), US midfielder Kyle Beckerman (L) and US defender Matt Besler (R) vie for the ball during a Group G football match between US and Germany at the Pernambuco Arena in Recife during the 2014 FIFA World Cup on June 26, 2014. AFP PHOTO / NELSON ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
RECIFE, BRAZIL - JUNE 26: Jermaine Jones of the United States receives treatment after a collision during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil group G match between the United States and Germany at Arena Pernambuco on June 26, 2014 in Recife, Brazil. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Germany's midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger (R) leaves the pitch as he is substituted by Germany's forward Mario Goetze during a Group G football match between US and Germany at the Pernambuco Arena in Recife during the 2014 FIFA World Cup on June 26, 2014. AFP PHOTO / NELSON ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
US midfielder Michael Bradley (L) discusses with Uzbek referee Ravshan Irmatov during a Group G football match between US and Germany at the Pernambuco Arena in Recife during the 2014 FIFA World Cup on June 26, 2014. AFP PHOTO / NELSON ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Germany's Per Mertesacker, left, hugs his teammate Mesut Ozil after Germany's Thomas Mueller scored the opening goal during the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)
United States' Jermaine Jones, foreground, and United States' Alejandro Bedoya (11) lie injured after colliding with each other during the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
United States' head coach Juergen Klinsmann yells during the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
United States' goalkeeper Tim Howard, center, argues with his defense during the group G World Cup soccer match between the USA and Germany at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Brazil, Thursday, June 26, 2014. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)
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By RONALD BLUM

RECIFE, Brazil (AP) -- The United States reached the knockout stage of consecutive World Cups for the first time, just not the way the Americans wanted.

Germany beat the U.S. 1-0 Thursday in soggy Recife on Thomas Mueller's 55th-minute goal to win Group G, but the Americans held onto second place when Portugal defeated Ghana 2-1 in a game played simultaneously in Brasilia.

"Obviously it's a huge achievement by our team to come through that group and qualify for the knockout stage," U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann said.

The Germans, three-time World Cup champions, finished with seven points, while the U.S. had four after allowing a 95th-minute goal against Portugal on Sunday in a 2-2 draw. Portugal also had four, but the Americans advanced from the so-called "Group of Death" because their goal difference was even and the Portuguese were minus three.

The Americans will play the Group H winner, likely Belgium put possibly Algeria, Tuesday in Salvador.

"Once the group is done, another tournament starts," Klinsmann said. "Whoever it is, we'll be prepared."

The Americans sprinted out onto the field at the final whistle, about 30 seconds before the other game ended and made advancement official. Brad Davis raised both hands and led the applauding U.S. team to the side of the stadium where the majority of American supporters sat.

Just reaching Arena Pernambuco was an accomplishment. A tropical downpour flooded roads in a beach city known as the Brazilian Venice, and the U.S. bus had to make its way through ankle-to-thigh-high water that slowed traffic and left some cars stalled. Rain fell throughout much of the game, and there were scattered empty red seats.

The game marked meetings of several former international teammates facing each other, an unusual occurrence. American right back Fabian Johnson started for Germany in the 2009 European Under-21 Championship alongside three of Germany's starters Thursday: Mats Hummels, Jerome Boateng and goalkeeper Manuel Neuer.

Klinsmann starred for West Germany when it won the 1990 World Cup and coached his homeland to the 2006 World Cup semifinals. His top assistant that year was Joachim Loew, who succeeded him as Germany's coach after the tournament. The two exchange a hug after the final whistle.

There had been fears before the match that the U.S. and Germany would not attack each other too much and be satisfied with a draw, which would advance both nations. Germany dominated possession with 60 percent and the Americans didn't threaten until second-half injury time.

The script was similar to 2002, when the U.S. opened with a 3-2 win over Portugal, then tied South Korea 1-1 and lost to Poland 3-0. The Americans advanced 12 years ago because South Korea defeated the Portuguese on an 80th-minute goal.


Will the perception of U.S. soccer change?

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