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The U. Jordan Reed Jersey .S. drew a daunting task for next years World Cup: difficult opponents, tropical venues and a wearying 9,000-mile zigzag journey across Brazil. The Americans wound up with the potentially punishing group they feared and will play Ghana, Portugal and Germany next June as they try to achieve a U.S. first: reaching the knockout phase twice in a row. While Ghana eliminated the Americans in 2006 and 2010, the Black Stars wont do it again. The U.S. opens its seventh straight World Cup appearance against Ghana on June 16 at Natal. The U.S. meets Portugal and 2008 FIFA Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo six days later in the Amazon rain forest city Manaus. The Americans have just three off days to recover before closing Group G on June 26 in Recife against three-time champion Germany. "I think we have the quality, if we play our best ball, to get out of the group," U.S. captain Clint Dempsey said after Fridays draw set the eight four-nation groups. "You cant think about, Am I the favourite? Am I the underdog? Whats it going to be like playing in the heat? Whats it going to be like with the travel? Those are factors that come into it, but at the end of the day both teams have to deal with it." After having the shortest group-play travel in South Africa, the U.S. will have the longest in Brazil. The Americans will be based in Sao Paulo and face trips of 1,436 miles to Natal, 1,832 miles to Manaus and 1,321 miles to Recife. They will play all three games in the tropics, with the second and third matches in the afternoon. "I think guys who have played in MLS are used to taking 3,000-mile trips across the country to play," midfielder Sacha Kljestan said. The U.S. group has the best average FIFA world ranking. Odds on the Americans winning their first World Cup more than doubled after the draw, from 60-1 to 150-1. "Its definitely one of the tougher groups, if not the toughest, but at the same time, this is what the World Cups all about. You go there to play against the best," American forward Jozy Altidore said during a telephone interview with The Associated Press. "I think the boys will be excited, will be up for it." U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann, who replaced Bob Bradley 2 1/2 years ago, played for Germanys 1990 World Cup championship team and coached his native country to third place at home in the 2006 tournament, commuting to Europe from his California house in Orange County. "It couldnt get any more difficult or any bigger," he said at the draw in Costa do Sauipe, Brazil. "Its a real challenge. And well take it. Well take it on, and hopefully were going to surprise some people there." The U.S. and South Korea were the last remaining teams in draw pot three. While the Americans landed in a group with an average FIFA ranking of 11.25, South Korea wound up in Group H, creating a group with the poorest average at 28.25. "I think the teams mentality is that we can go and play with anybody," American defender Matt Besler said. "Now were going to have to prove it." Germany beat the U.S. 2-0 in its 1998 World Cup opener in Paris -- with Klinsmann setting up the first goal and scoring the second -- then edged the Americans 1-0 on a controversial goal in the 2002 quarterfinal in South Korea. Die Mannschaft is coached by Klinsmanns former assistant, Joachim Loew. The Americans beat a second-tier German roster 4-3 in a June exhibition at Washington. "With Jurgen Klinsmann, they have another mentality," Loew said. "I learned a lot from Jurgen, so this is special." Ranked 14th in the world, the U.S. has alternated quick exits with advancement since returning to soccers showcase in 1990 after a 40-year absence. After the draw four years ago, one British paper used a headline "EASY" for England, Algeria, Slovenia and the Yanks, and The Sun called it the "best English group since the Beatles." The Americans wound up atop a group for the first time since the first World Cup in 1930, and England advanced as the second-place nation. This time, second-ranked Germany and fifth-ranked Portugal are the favourites to reach the second round. If the U.S. qualifies for the round of 16, it would face Belgium, Russia, Algeria or South Korea from Group H. As for the rest of the field, Brazil, Cameroon, Croatia, Mexico were put in Group A; Australia, Chile, Netherlands and Spain in Group B; Colombia, Greece, Ivory Coast and Japan in Group C; Costa Rica, England, Italy and Uruguay in Group D; Ecuador, France, Honduras and Switzerland in Group E; and Argentina, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Iran and Nigeria in Group F. The U.S. will feel pressure to open with a win against 24th-ranked Ghana. The Black Stars defeated the Americans 2-1 in the 2006 group stage and by the same score in overtime in the round of 16 at the last World Cup in South Africa. "Theyre the team that beat us, kind of crushed our dreams of being in the World Cup, so I think were due a little bit of luck and were due a win against them," Dempsey said. At the 2002 tournament, the U.S. opened with a 3-2 upset of Portugal after taking a shocking three-goal lead in the first 36 minutes. Several of the American players are of German descent, so all three matchups are intriguing. The U.S. will train at home from mid-May until early June and plans a series of exhibition games, which likely will include England as an opponent, before heading to Brazil. "Everybody is saying that this is the Group of Death and its such a hard challenge," former American captain John Harkes said. "I still think that the U.S. can rise to the occasion." Chris Thompson Jersey . "Thank you for the warm welcome," Beckham said on an 80-degree February morning. In this case, it was soccer weather. The sport moved a step closer to returning to South Florida on Wednesday, when Beckham confirmed he has exercised his option to purchase a Major League Soccer expansion franchise in Miami. Alex Smith Jersey . -- Thirty years ago, the Detroit Pistons beat the Denver Nuggets 186-184 in triple overtime, a game that remains the highest scoring in NBA history. http://www.officialwashingtonredskinsfootball.com/authentic-phil-taylor-jersey-womens . Follow all the action live on TSN Radio 1050 in Toronto, TSN Radio 690 in Montreal, TSN Radio 1260 in Edmonton and TEAM 1410 on Friday at 3pm et/Noon pt.VAL-DOR, Que. -- Anthony Duclair and Lucas Batt each scored twice and Cody Donaghey had four assists as the Quebec Remparts downed the host Val-dOr Foreurs 8-5 on Saturday in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action. Mikhail Grigorenko and Adam Erne had a goal and an assist apiece for the Remparts (28-12-8), who extended their win streak to five games, while Nick Sorensen and Fabrice Herzog scored the others. Olivier Archambault chipped in with three assists. Anthony Mantha, Pierre-Maxime Poudrier, Anthony Richard, Louick Marcotte and Nicolas Aube-Kubel scored for the Foreurs (30-17-2). Quebecs Francois Brassard made 48 saves for the win as Val-dOrs Antoine Bibeau gave up seven goals on 27 shots. --- OCEANIC 2 VOLTIGEURS 1 (SO) DRUMMONDVILLE, Que. -- Anthony DeLuca scored the only goal of the shootout as Rimouski slipped past the Voltigeurs. Loic Leduc scored in regulation for the Oceanic (29-13-7) while Philippe Desrosiers made 32 saves for the victory. William Carrier supplied the offence for Drummondville (29-16-3) and Louis-Philip Guindon stopped 24-of-25 shots in defeat. Rimouskis Frederik Gauthier was stopped by Guindon on a penalty shot 6:14 into the second period. --- CATARACTES 2 PHOENIX 1 SHERBROOKE, Que. -- Shawinigan used its power play to topple the Phoenix for just its third win in its last 10 outings. Dylan Labbe and Anthony Beauvillier scored with the man advantage for the Cataractes (12-29-7), who went 2 for 4 on the night, while Felix-Antoine Bergeron assisted on both. Tim Wieser scored for Sherbrooke (15-28-6), which went 1 for 6 with the power play. Marvin Cupper made 23 saves for Shawinigan. Maxime Lagace stopped 10-of-12 shots for the Phoenix, but left the game after two periods. Gabriel Parent turned away all seven shots he faced in relief. --- MOOSEHEADS 4 SCREAMING EAGLES 2 HALIFAX -- Timo Meier scored once and set up two more as the Mooseheads doubled up Cape Breton for their seventh straight victory. Brendan Duke, Andrew Shewfelt and Brent Andrews also scored for Halifax (33-16-1). Kyle Farrell scored once for the Screaminng Eagles (25-20-3) and also assisted on Loik Leveilles goal. Trent Williams Jersey. Zachary Fucale made 21 saves for the Mooseheads as Cape Bretons Alex Bureau stopped 29-of-33 shots in defeat. --- WILDCATS 2 TITAN 0 MONCTON, N.B. -- Jason Rioux stopped all 29 shots his way as the Wildcats handed Acadie-Bathurst its sixth loss in a row. Conor Garland scored both goals for Moncton (25-23-2) on the power play while Jacob Sweeney picked up two assists. Raphael Lafontaine led all Titan (17-27-5) skaters with five shots on Rioux. Acadie-Bathurts Jacob Brennan turned aside 32-of-34 shots in a losing cause. --- DRAKKAR 4 SEA DOGS 1 SAINT JOHN, N.B. -- Charles Hudon had a goal and an assist as Baie-Comeau extended its win streak to seven games by defeating the Sea Dogs. Bokondji Imama, Charles Poulin and Valentin Zykov also scored for the Drakkar (32-12-4), who sit atop the QMJHL standings. Saint John (14-29-4) got its goal from Nathan Noel. Baie-Comeaus Philippe Cadorette made 22 saves while Sebastien Auger gave the Sea Dogs a chance by kicking out 49-of-53 shots. --- ARMADA 3 OLYMPIQUES 2 (SO) BOISBRIAND, Que. -- Nikita Jevpalovs scored the winner in the sixth round of the shootout as the Armada avoided a four-game skid by edging Gatineau. Marcus Hinds and Ryan Tesink scored in regulation for Blainville-Boisbriand (29-10-9). Emile Poirier had a goal and an assist for the Olympiques (28-17-3) and Alex Dostie scored once. Etienne Marcoux made 23 saves for the Armada while Gatineaus Robert Steeves stopped 26-of-28 shots in a losing cause. --- TIGRES 4 ISLANDERS 2 VICTORIAVILLE, Que. -- Ross Johnston had a pair of goals and an assist as the Tigres doubled up Charlottetown for their seventh straight win. Yan Pavel Laplante and Cameron Yarwood also scored for Victoriaville (23-19-6) and Mark Tremaine tacked on two assists. Bradley Kennedy and Spenser Cobbold scored for the Islanders (17-27-5), who dropped their sixth contest in a row. Francois Tremblay made 26 saves for the Tigres. Charlottetowns Mason MacDonald turned away 35-of-39 shots in defeat. 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