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2022 World Cup explained: Is Team USA eliminated from the tournament?

Here's how the World Cup knockout rounds work and a look at the tournament bracket.

The United States men's national team lost 3-1 to the Netherlands on Saturday morning, becoming the first team to be eliminated in the knockout rounds of the 2022 World Cup.

The 32-team field is now down to 15 countries vying for the prestigious trophy.

Here's what you need to know about the 2022 World Cup.

Here's a look at the United States' run in the World Cup, how the knockout rounds work and a look at the tournament bracket.

What's next for Team USA after its World Cup exit?

Yes, the United States is officially eliminated from the 2022 World Cup following a 3-1 loss to the Netherlands on Saturday morning.

Team USA attempted more shots (17), had eight on target and held the possession advantage (58%) than the Netherlands in its defeat. Those are all positive signs that typically lead to victory, but a few costly defensive errors in the penalty box proved to be the difference.

Haji Wright's goal in the 76th minute was the only goal to show for the United States' positive efforts in the match. The Netherlands held a 2-0 lead at halftime and its lead was never really threatened in the second half. 

The Netherlands will face the winner of Argentina and Australia in the quarterfinals, while the United States will regroup for the 2026 World Cup, which the country will co-host along with Mexico and Canada.

This four-game run in this World Cup showed that the United States (15th-ranked in FIFA's world rankings) could make a run in future tournaments, especially with one of the younger teams in the world.

How did the USA perform in this World Cup?

Team USA drew 1-1 against Wales on Nov. 21 in its first World Cup game. USA's Timothy Weah scored the opening goal in the 36th minute and Wales' Gareth Bale drilled a penalty kick in the 82nd minute to tie the match.

The highly anticipated matchup against England ended in a 0-0 draw on Nov. 25. The United States attempted more shots (10) and earned more corner kicks (seven), but England had more shots on target (three) in the stalemate.

With the United States' tournament fate on the line, the team defeated Iran 1-0 on Nov. 29 to jump into second place in Group B and advance to the next round of the World Cup.

How has the USA done in previous World Cups?

This was the United States' 10th World Cup in its history. 

The men's national team did not qualify for the 2018 World Cup, snapping a streak of six consecutive World Cup appearances.

Here's how Team USA finished in previous World Cups, with its best performance coming in 2002.

  • 2022: Round-of-16
  • 2018: Did not qualify
  • 2014: Round-of-16
  • 2010: Round-of-16
  • 2006: Group stage (did not advance)
  • 2002: Quarterfinals (8th)
  • 1998: Group stage (did not advance)
  • 1994: Round-of-16
  • 1990: Group stage (did not advance)

The men's national team had a 32-year drought spanning from 1954-1986 where the country didn't even qualify for the World Cup.

Wait, back up. What's a 'group stage?'

The group stage is the first phase of the World Cup, involving 32 countries and eight groups. There are four countries in each group. The top two teams in "points" advance to the knockout stages of the World Cup.

Knockout rounds? What's that?

This is where the World Cup will be familiar to fans that follow professional sports in America. The knockout rounds in the World Cup are single-elimination. Win or go home. It's that simple.

The World Cup champion needs to win four consecutive matches to win the tournament. 

So this means no 0-0 draws right?

Yes! A draw, or tie, is only possible in the World Cup group stage. If countries are tied after 90 minutes, the match will head into "extra time." That means there will be two 15-minute periods added to decide a winner. There is no "golden goal" in these periods, meaning the full 30 minutes of extra time are guaranteed to be played regardless of any goals scored. 

If the countries are still tied after 120 minutes of play, a penalty kick shootout will decide the winner. A penalty kick shootout involves five players from both sides attempting penalty kicks against the goalkeeper. From there, the country that makes more penalty kicks out of five advances. (Of course, if it's still tied after five penalty kicks the two countries keep kicking until there is a winner.)

What other countries are still alive in the World Cup?

Here are the 15 countries still alive in the World Cup, sorted by FIFA ranking:

  • Brazil (1) 
  • Argentina (3)
  • France (4) 
  • England (5)
  • Spain (7)
  • Netherlands (8)
  • Portugal (9)
  • Croatia (12)
  • Switzerland (15)
  • Senegal (18)
  • Morocco (22)
  • Japan (24)
  • Poland (26) 
  • South Korea (28)
  • Australia (38)

Where can I watch the World Cup matches in Seattle? 

Several bars and restaurants across Washington will have watch parties for select World Cup matches throughout the tournament.

Here are 10 places to check out World Cup matches in Washington.

What are the other World Cup round-of-16 matches?

United States vs. Netherlands is one of eight matchups in the round of 16. 

Here are the other matches and what time they will begin (all times PT). 

  • Argentina vs. Australia, Dec. 3 at 11 a.m.
  • France vs. Poland, Dec. 4 at 7 a.m.
  • England vs. Senegal, Dec. 4 at 11 a.m.
  • Japan vs. Croatia, Dec. 5 at 7 a.m.
  • Brazil vs. South Korea, Dec. 5 at 11 a.m.
  • Morocco vs. Spain, Dec. 6 at 7 a.m.
  • Portugal vs. Switzerland, Dec. 6 at 11 a.m.

Is that everything?

Yes! Enjoy the soccer football everyone.

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