Stunning US Soccer Upset Matches 'Miracle on Ice'
Underdog US team's surprise win over Spain is a victory to be savored
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 25, 2009 1:55 AM CDT
Mike Eruzione, captain of the 1980 'Miracle on Ice' US Hockey Team and the rest of the squad prepare to light the Olympic Cauldron at the Salt Lake City Winter Olympic Game in 2002.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Last night's stunning soccer victory over Spain by the US team ranks up there with 1980's "Miracle on Ice" Olympic defeat of the Russians as one of the greatest upsets ever pulled off by Americans, George Vecsey writes in the New York Times. The Confederations Cup victory over the world's top-ranked soccer team may not transform the US into a soccer powerhouse overnight, but the defeat made it a thrilling spectacle, notes Vecsey.

The US will now play South Africa or Brazil in the final. But the most important legacy from this win may be an easier draw at the World Cup, now that the US has leapfrogged Mexico to become North America's top soccer team. "This was not the World Cup, but it was an important tournament in the march toward 2010," Vecsey writes. "This victory needs to be savored on its own by the players and their loyal fans."