The atmosphere outside the stadium was electric with many fans (both American and German) unable to get tickets. We were filmed by ABC before the game, and interview in mock Spanish by an Argentinia TV station. Many of the Germans commented that they were surprised to see how many Americans there were at the game. The German supporters were singing, "Allez, Allez, Allez-man-ge" before the game; we would cheer them and respond with a USA cheer (unfortunately, ours were usually mono-lingual!) and they would join in.

Inside the stadium, we were pretty well outnumbered, however, and the Germans had a lot more to cheer about. We (along with most of the US U-18 national team) were in the lower deck behind the goal the US was supposed to be attacking in the first half. Although not to many of us seriously expected a win for the US, the US team played scared most of the first half and didn't look dangerous until Frankie Heyduk came in to start the second half.

After the game the whole stadium emptied into the nearest Metro station, and it took most of an hour to get on the train. Most of the Germans and were pretty gracious about their victory, but it'll be a while before they take the US seriously.

FIFA Match Report

Groff's Brigade and some glory chasers outside Parc des Princes before the game.

Making friends with the Germans before the game.

Streets surrounding Parc des Princes before the game. The French police look on questioningly.

Inside Parc des Princes before US/Germany.

Update: February 11, 1999

Seven months later, the US and Germany played a friendly in Jacksonville, Florida. In the world cup, Germany scored in the eight minute from a corner to the far post. Klinsmann won the header amongst three defenders, and headed the ball across the box to an open Andy Moller who managed to squeeze it through the 18-inch gap between Mike Burns and the post. At the Jacksonville game, the Germans had an eerily similar opportunity in the tenth minute. This time, though, he headed the ball over the bar. The US went on to win 3-0.

In literaly the first minute of the world cup game, Jens Jeremies elbowed Claudio Reyna in the kidneys knocking him down while the referree was more sensibly following the play elsewhere. Claudio ended up producing his most disappointing performance ever. In Jacksonville, we got our own back.

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