How the USMNT should line up against Iran as World Cup dream rests in the balance
Here we are. Two games down, one to go. Win and the U.S. men's national team are in. Anything else and they'll leave Qatar early wondering what could have been.
The USMNT's World Cup fate comes down to a clash with Iran, who are currently in pole position to qualify for the knockout round after a 2-0 win over Wales. An Iran win or draw will be enough to send Team Melli through.
Gregg Berhalter and co. know that. They know they'll need at least a goal to keep their World Cup dream alive. But, after scoring just once in their first two games, there are questions about where that goal will come from.
Against England, Berhalter unleashed a tactical wrinkle few could have expected, sending the U.S. out in a 4-4-2 rather than a 4-3-3. It worked, with the U.S. going toe-to-toe with the Three Lions and, in many ways, having the better of the game.
That's what makes this game so difficult to project. For years, Berhalter's system has been somewhat reliable. Now, he's proven that he's willing to shake things up with a surprise.
But how could the U.S. line up against Iran knowing that they'll need to win? GOAL takes a look: