If you didn’t know who U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard was, you do now. Despite the devastating loss for the Americans, the Everton goalie became the hero of the match and established a new World Cup record, with 16 saves.
Anyone watching the match between Belgium vs. Team USA could see how Howard stopped one after another shot on goal and if you thought he stopped a lot of them, you were right. The 35-year-old was a wall, and made Belgium fight very hard for their goals, so much so that the match had to go into extra time.
The heart stopping match was one of the most thrilling of the 2014 World Cup thus far, and it could have been a blood bath against the U.S. if not for Tim Howard and his constant alertness at the net. At times the shots came fast and furious, but Howard had a combination of skills and luck to prevent the football from getting in.
Nobody can deny that Team USA stayed in the game after regulation thanks to Howard, since the Belgians had enough missed chances that were sure goals. And despite the heartbreaking 2-1 loss, the goalie had 16 saves, a new World Cup record.
The previous record holder was Peru’s Ramon Quiroga — with 13 saves — who established the long standing feat in 1978. The new record also means that the Belgians had a serious number of shots, 38, which is tied for fourth most by a team since 1966, and most in a World Cup since 1974.
Take a deeper look at Tim Howard’s record-setting day http://t.co/5odGdbZYRJ http://t.co/bwbRp611zs
— The New York Times (@nytimes) July 2, 2014
Following the exhausting match, Tim Howard spoke about the match at the press conference:
“That’s my job. That’s what I signed up to do. It’s part of it. In these big games against top quality competition the levee is going to break at some point if we continue that. Hats off to Belgium they were fantastic. Oddly enough when you’re in the game you really don’t think about that. You kind of fix the problem and you think you can do it.”
“Belgium are a good team with a lot of good players but so are we. Games like this are never easy to digest after. Everybody put so much into it. It’s disappointing to go out this way. But we need to be honest with ourselves and know that there’s still work ahead of us and we have to keep getting better and keep working. And if we do that then we’re just going to keep moving ourselves along.”
Needless to say, Tim Howard’s heroics are being talked about all over the world, and especially on social media. Check out the feed on Twitter to see what people are saying about the U.S. goalkeeper:
[Image via Twitter]