MTB star Burry Stander dead in crash

first_img4 January 2013 Aged only 25, Stander’s death has sent shockwaves through the cycling community. There was also fury that yet another cyclist had been lost in an accident, with members of the community saying other vehicles do not respect them enough on the road. “We have been blessed to have had such an amazing and inspirational person represent South Africa and we will treasure every memory.” ‘Humility and prowess’“We have lost not only a friend, colleague and team-mate, but a true sportsman. He will long be remembered for his humility, his prowess and the gentle manner in which he conducted his life! “Sincere condolences to all. His 2012 duel with Olympic silver medallist Nino Schurter for victory in the UCI World Cup in Pietermaritzburg was a sight to behold as the pair destroyed the chasing field. Seeing it on television is one thing; seeing such speed, endurance and skill in real life is another. Along with Greg Minnaar in downhill and Robbie Hunter on the road, he put South African cycling on the world map. ‘I have no words’Gary Perkin, one of the world’s leading mountain biking photographers, wrote on Twitter: “I have no words … Only tears! RIP Burry!” His sentiments were echoed by many. Twitter lit up as plans began to be put in place for a ride in memory of the former under-23 world champion, who finished fifth in the 2012 London Olympic Games. Leading the way in planning it were cycling personalities such as world downhill champion Greg Minnaar, Andrew McLean, Robbie Hunter and Kevin McCallum. 20132013 should have been a great year for Stander. It could have been the best of his life. He would have defended the Absa Cape Epic title with Christoph Sauser, aiming for a hat-trick of wins. News of his passing devastated the Swiss great. “Never felt so empty since my dad passed away when i was a kid. @africanmtbkid i will never ever forget you!” Sauser wrote on Twitter. “Dear All, “David Hyam and the Specialized S-Racing Team” His wife of less than a year, Cherise, an elite cyclist too, won a stage of the Route de France, the women’s version of the Tour de France in 2011. She was set to concentrate on mountain biking in 2012, however, and hopefully follow in the footsteps of her husband. South African cycling lost its greatest ever cross-country rider on Thursday. Burry Stander, one of the world’s leading competitors in the discipline, was killed while training after being hit by a minibus taxi. ‘One of the coolest and greatest’“World is going crazy! I’m so sad to hear again such bad news. Burry was one of the coolest and greatest athlete in MTB sport! #RIP” Schurter tweeted. “It is with great sadness that we bid farewell to our friend and cycling legend Burry, who was tragically snatched away in the prime of his life while training in his home town of Kwazulu-Natal this afternoon. “Not only is this a loss to South African sport, but we have lost a true gentleman who through his professionalism, modesty and humility, constantly showing sheer guts, represented our country with great pride. A statement released by Cycling South Africa read: “Burry, who was the most successful mountain bike cyclist the country has ever seen, and whose promising career has been abruptly cut short, was a true icon and sporting role model. “Our heartfelt sympathies, thoughts and prayers go out to his wife Cherise, his parents, family and all who were privileged to know this gentle giant. “Life is short, life is sweet but his legend will live on forever. Stander was also set to take part in the World Championships on home ground, where he finished second in the World Cup in 2012 on the same track that will be used later this year. Respected and much lovedStander’s outstanding talent, his massive work ethic, his excellent results at the highest level and his humility made him a respected and much loved man to many. The shock of his loss continues to reverberate around the cycling world. Stander was part of Specialized Racing’s powerful team, and with Olympic champion Jaroslav Kulhavy gave the outfit a fantastic 1-2 punch. Specialized’s director of sports marketing, David Hyam, wrote a letter about the passing of the South African star: Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material “A fighter, champion, gentleman and forever a Legend… RIP Burry”, wrote Minnaar. last_img read more

Nelson Mandela: a life in service

first_imgSouth Africa’s first black president, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, spent most of his adult life fighting apartheid. He died last night, aged 95, at his Houghton, Johannesburg home, after enduring a prolonged lung infection.The former Nobel Peace Prize Laureate’s death has brought the country to a standstill with many condolences still pouring in from world leaders, celebrities, and ordinary South Africans.Brand South Africa chairperson, Chichi Maponya, expressed deep sorrow at his passing saying, “Madiba embodied our hopes and the realisation of our dreams.“We are in deep mourning following this loss of indescribable magnitude which is today reverberating across the world. During his imprisonment for 27 years, Madiba carried the aspirations of multitudes of our people who yearned for a free and democratic South Africa.”He added that Mandela had inspired South Africans and people around the world to fight for South Africa’s liberation, despite the seeming impossibility of this vision.“One of the greatest gifts he has bequeathed to this nation is the courage and strength to believe in a tomorrow that is better than today, a tomorrow in which our people live in dignity and prosperity,” he said.Many South Africans who were devastated by the news of Mandela’s death took to the nation’s streets in a show of mourning last night. Some gathered at Mr Mandela’s home in Houghton to light candles and celebrated his achievements. Others congregated outside Mandela’s former home on Soweto’s Vilakazi Street.United States President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron were among world leaders and dignitaries who paid fulsome tribute to Mandela as a moral giant and a beacon for the oppressed.27 YEARS A PRISONERLet us draw from Nelson Mandela’s wisdom. Let us be inspired. Let each and every one of us continue to walk forward into the future as he didMandela spent 27 years in jail for his attempts to overthrow the country’s white-minority government before being freed in 1990. He led the African National Congress (ANC) liberation organisation in negotiations with the National Party to secure South Africa’s first inclusive election in 1994.Born into the royal Tembu family in July 1918 in the village of Qunu, in Umtata in the south eastern Transkei, Mandela rose from relative rural obscurity to challenge the apartheid government.He became commander-in-chief of the ANC’s armed wing, Umkhonto we Sizwe (Spear of the Nation), in 1961 and underwent military training in Algeria and Ethiopia the following year.While underground back home in South Africa, Mandela was captured by police in 1962 and sentenced to five years in prison for inciting workers to strike, and leaving the country illegally.In 1963 he was charged with sabotage and sentenced in 1964 to life in prison at the infamous Rivonia Trial with a number of other ANC members.He became South Africa’s first black president in 1994 and, after just a single term in office, stepped down as president in 1999.In retirement, Mandela focused his energy on his new role as a roving elder statesman and leading HIV/Aids campaigner before retiring from public life in 2004.His last major public appearance was in July 2010, at the final of the Fifa World Cup at the FNB Soccer City Stadium in Johannesburg.Mandela is survived by his third wife, Graça Machel, three children, 17 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren, and four step-children from his marriage to Machel.last_img read more

3 critical challenges your business incubator should solve

first_imgTo develop an idea into a business, incubation seems to be the new industry “normal.” There are thousands of incubators worldwide and each year that number is continuing to grow. There are private, public and corporate incubators, many with a distinct focus on local economies, global, communities, or a specific vertical.At this point, it sounds like variations of ice cream. Over 9,000 flavors, all around the world. If there’s incubation happening, it’s because there is a demand from companies, and because the companies that incubate probably accelerate beyond their competition.Incubators originated in New York during the late 1950s as co-working spaces offering affordable office space and shared resources to local entrepreneurs. As they evolved, incubators began providing mentor advice in the mid-1980s. By the mid-2000s we saw explosive growth when a new wave of incubators including 500 Startups, Techstars, Y Combinator all provided access to exclusive networks and investors.Combined with crowdfunding, incubation is now seen as the royal path towards venture capital investment. Going down this path will provide you with a cheaper and faster route to a successful round of financing.All is sound and clear. Or is it?Let’s take a step back and start with what it mean to “incubate.” To incubate means “to cause or aid the development of an idea.” Notice, that a company’s stage is not mentioned in the definition. More recently there has been a pushback on joining incubators due to a feeling to late-stage for them. But as entrepreneurs, we always need support and to be incubating what we do. Incubation plays a significant role in the developmental success of our companies.Now back to the why. Over 90% of startups will fail to make it past their first round of financing or being able to generate revenue. Only 10% have a chance to survive beyond and push forward on developing a company; a chance, not a guarantee. Today ninety percent is high, but we can see that number decline as more entrepreneurs take advantage of programs like incubators.But to do so as entrepreneurs, you need to be aware of the drawbacks with current structures of incubation programs.#1: PaceTraditional incubation programs today can be long and drawn out, lasting anywhere from 4-12+ months. During that time you’re left on your own with little action in between. This duration provides a disservice to the entrepreneurs involved by not helping them quickly validate their idea early enough so that decisions can be to more forward or pivot to another direction. Instead, this crawling pace encourages slow company growth and development leading towards a higher likelihood of failure.#2: AttentionMost incubation programs today work with a cohort size of 50-100+ startups. This is in part due to the nature of how they generate revenue (yes, they’re a business too) have to bet on a large number of startups to ensure they see a profitable return. Which means you become a number. Sadly, this is a structure built for fast winners, and everyone else falls between leaving you on your own, little personal support, or being given a helping hand.#3. NetworkThis is what most entrepreneurs fail to truly capitalize on while a part of an incubator program today. Good programs survive and thrive on their strong networks of mentors and investors who each have given their time and resources for support. But most programs fail to help entrepreneurs understand the network’s value and entrepreneurs fail to capitalize and to build meaningful relationships with those inside the network. This leads to a higher chance of failure because when trouble arises entrepreneurs look back for attention from their program or hesitate on a pivot and take instead are on the path of a slow death.Introducing the Alpha incubator programNow almost forty years after the first incubator launch, we enter the fourth wave of incubators with a new program that is truly supportive and begins to stack the deck back in favor of entrepreneurs. Welcome the ReadWrite Labs Alpha program.The Alpha program is built with the sole purpose of providing the initial support to entrepreneurs who are getting started, a little stuck on their next step or looking to enter the San Francisco / Silicon Valley ecosystem. Alpha’s focus is on Internet of Things (IoT) startups and provides office space in downtown San Francisco along with access to an exclusive global network of mentors, investors and corporate partners. The program is three months in duration for $2,000 USD and has been designed with data from working with over 100 top global IoT startups. No matter your stage, if you’re looking for support or growing your network strategically–and you want to be at the center of the action–join Alpha today. Kyle Ellicott How Myia Health’s Partnership with Mercy Virtua… Tags:#featured#incubation#Internet of Things#IoT#ReadWrite#startups#top Follow the Puckcenter_img Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Related Posts Internet of Things Makes it Easier to Steal You…last_img read more

Filoil: NU stays in q’finals hunt

first_imgPhoto by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netNational University fanned its hopes for a quarterfinal spot in the 2017 Filoil Flying V Preseason Premier Cup with a 104-88 victory over St. Benilde Sunday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.J-Jay Alejandro carried the load for the Bulldogs with 25 points, 19 coming in the first half, nine rebounds, five assists, and three steals to improve his side to a 4-3 slate.ADVERTISEMENT Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken Matthew Johnson heated up for St. Benilde as he drained back-to-back treys to cut the deficit to 12, 95-83, before Morido and Anthony Sistoza quashed that uprising with consecutive hits in the last three minutes of the game.The win set up NU in a collossal duel against University of the Philippines on Wednesday, with the winner claiming the fourth spot in Group B.Johnson went 7-of-10 from threes to wound up with 21 points and four assists, while Clement Leutcheu got 15 markers and 11 rebounds for St. Benilde (1-7).The Scores:NU 104 – Alejandro 25, Yu 12, Salem 10, Morido 10, Gaye 10, Bartlett 9, Diputado 9, Aquino 5, Tibayan 3, Cauilan 3, Flores 2, Rangel 2, Sistoza 2, Mosqueda 2, Lastimosa 0, Galvelo 0, Go 0, Abatayo 0.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ LATEST STORIES ST. BENILDE 88 – Johnson 21, Leutcheu 15, Haruna 9, Young 8, Belgica 7, Bunyi 7, Dixon 5, JJ Domingo 5, Naboa 4, San Juan 3, Pili 2, Velasco 2, Sta. Maria 0, JS Domingo 0, Suarez 0.Quarters: 27-25, 56-44, 84-66, 104-88. Cayetano dares Lacson, Drilon to take lie-detector test: Wala akong kinita sa SEA Games Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games “J-Jay is probably one of the best shooters in college right now. If he’s open for half a second, 90-percent, he’s going to make it. But he still needs to do more and lessen the turnovers. We’re working in it and I hope he and the whole team keeps on improving,” said coach Jamike Jarin.Dave Yu also added 12 markers and four boards, while Issa Gaye chimed in 10 points and six rebounds.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutReggie Morido got 10 markers and four assists, while Matt Salem also had 10.NU jumped on the Blazers in the first half to take a 56-44 halftime lead before Yu drained a three to give the Bulldogs a 21-point edge, 87-66, with 9:16 left in the fourth period. View comments 1 dead in Cavite blast, firecenter_img Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. What ‘missteps’? Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next World’s 50 Best Restaurants launches new drinking and dining guide Power wins wild IndyCar race at Texas under caution Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. WATCH: Firefighters rescue baby seal found in parking garagelast_img read more

10 months agoWillian urging Chelsea to deal in David Luiz

first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Willian urging Chelsea to deal in David Luizby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveWillian is urging Chelsea to offer his fellow Brazilian David Luiz a new deal. Luiz is in a stand-off with the club as they refuse to offer contracts longer than 12 months to players over 30 years of age.Willian said: “David has a lot of quality to do these kind of passes. Of course. I want him to stay. We have to see if the club will want him. I think they want him. For me, I want him to stay.”The Brazil forward also has 18 months left on his Stamford but he said: “I’m fine, I’m fine. No rush about that.“We can talk about that in the future, no problem.” last_img

a month agoAndreas Pereira now feels settled at Man Utd

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Andreas Pereira now feels settled at Man Utdby Paul Vegasa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United midfielder Andreas Pereira says he now feels settled at Old Trafford.Loan spells in Spain with ­Granada and Valencia helped Pereira’s development and in the summer he signed a new ­contract that will keep him at Old Trafford until 2023.He said: “I looked up to a lot of players, but especially David Beckham, Paul Scholes and ­ Cristiano Ronaldo . I also ­admired Kaka. Three out of the four were United – but I love United. “I have been here so long now that it’s like my house. I love Manchester – even the rainy weather – and I want to stay here for many years.“But to do that, I know we have to have a winning team. I will never accept losing games. I am used to winning because this is Manchester United.“When I came through here, it was about ­winning things, about winning trophies and we’re doing all we can to get close to that again.”I am not going to lie – if you are a United player, then you have to play everything to win.“That’s the aim we all have – to get back there, to get back to the top and put the club where it belongs.“We are all working hard on that.” last_img read more

Report: Duke’s Jahlil Okafor In Phenomenal Shape, Looks “As Lean As Ever” Preparing For NBA

first_imgJahlil Okafor reacts to scoring a basket.CHAPEL HILL, NC – MARCH 07: Jahlil Okafor #15 of the Duke Blue Devils reacts after scoring against the North Carolina Tar Heels during their game at the Dean Smith Center on March 7, 2015 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)With the NBA Draft set to take place near the end of June, some of the top prospects in the country are currently in Santa Barbara, Calif., working out. Duke’s Jahlil Okafor, the potential No. 1 overall selection, is among the crop of players preparing for the draft at P3 Applied Sports Science, a training center in California. He reportedly looks pretty great. At @P3sportscience in Santa Barbara watching @BDA_Sports draft prospects working out today & tomorrow. Great group. pic.twitter.com/MheJn4MuLD— Jonathan Givony (@DraftExpress) May 6, 2015At @P3sportscience: Jahlil Okafor, Frank Kaminsky, Stanley Johnson, Kelly Oubre, Robert Upshaw, Joe Young, the Harrison twins, and many more— Jonathan Givony (@DraftExpress) May 6, 2015Jahlil Okafor has only been here for four days, but he came in phenomenal shape. As lean as I’ve ever seen him. Hasn’t been vacationing…— Jonathan Givony (@DraftExpress) May 6, 2015Okafor played this past season at 270 pounds. A leaner, more explosive Okafor would be pretty unstoppable. The NBA Draft is set to take place June 25.last_img read more

Trans Mountain to be discussed at TrudeauNotley meeting in Edmonton

first_imgEDMONTON – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be in Edmonton today, where he’ll face questions about his government’s plans for the beleaguered Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.The prime minister’s office says Trudeau will meet with Premier Rachel Notley this afternoon. A spokeswoman for Notley says the meeting will be about the pipeline, and that the premier hopes to discuss possible paths forward for the controversial project.The Federal Court of Appeal last week reversed a cabinet decision to allow construction to go ahead, ruling there was not enough consultation with Indigenous people and that the National Energy Board didn’t properly consider the impact of an increase in oil tanker traffic.After last week’s court decision, Notley announced she was pulling Alberta out of the federal climate plan until Ottawa gets the expansion back on track. She also demanded that Trudeau appeal the ruling to the Supreme Court of Canada and hold an emergency session of Parliament on the issue.Trudeau has said Ottawa remains committed to getting the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion built.The project would triple the bitumen-carrying capacity of the existing pipeline from the Edmonton area and Metro Vancouver.Minutes after the court ruling was released on Friday, Kinder Morgan shareholders approved the sale of the existing pipeline and other assets to the federal government for $4.5 billion. The purchase closed on Friday, making the federal government wholly responsible for what happens next.During his visit to the Alberta capital, Trudeau will also tour several facilities and a cultural society with Natural Resources Minister Amarjeet Sohi, who is an Edmonton MP. The prime minister will give a speech at a Liberal fundraising event in the evening.last_img read more

Policemen in Noida get meal from Namo Foods

first_imgNoida: A controversy emerged at one of the polling booth of Noida after the police officials posted on election duty were served food packets written ‘Namo foods’ atop the packet. However, senior police officials clarified that the packets were procured from Namo Food Shop and not from any political party.Vaibhav Krishna, Senior Superintendent of Police, Gautam Buddh Nagar said that the food packets were procured from a food shop in sector 2 of Noida which is also registered with Zomato. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murder”Some people are spreading misinformation that Policemen have been distributed food from a Political party. The information is absolutely wrong and packets were ordered on April 10 for election duty from a food outlet in sector 2 of Noida, named Namo foods. There is no official order to procure food from any particular food outlet while the meals were arranged by the district administration and police” said Krishna. The incident was reported from sector 15A polling booth of Noida where Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP’s) sitting Member of Parliament Mahesh Sharma also casted his vote on Thursday morning. The controversy erupted after a video and images of a hatchback car carrying these food packets went viral and came into the notice of some media persons present at the polling booth. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsSoon after the news was published on a few media channels, senior police and administrative officials took cognisance of the matter and issued an explanation. Sources said that Namo Food private limited is a non government company with its outlets all over India. The company is registered with Registrar of companies in Pune and is operating since 2010. Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh Chief Electoral Officer has asked GB Nagar district administration for their explanation on these food packets.last_img read more

The Worst Loss In The History Of US Mens Soccer

5/11/69Qualifier1455Haiti1453✓64.3 The worst USMNT World Cup losses everMatches for which the U.S. men’s soccer team had the highest probability of winning (according to Elo ratings) but ultimately lost, 1885-2017 Only includes matches that were at the World Cup or World Cup qualifying level (i.e., excludes continental championships, friendlies and minor tournaments). Games played in neutral locations denoted with a dash.Source: eloratings.net 9/1/01Qualifier1791Honduras1734✓71.2 6/22/06World Cup1797Ghana1682—66.0 5/31/85Qualifier1558Costa Rica1505✓70.7 All newsletters 10/15/08Qualifier1813Trinidad & Tobago153373.8 DATESTAGEU.S. ELOOPPONENTOPP. ELOHOME?WIN PROB. 9/1/17Qualifier1789Costa Rica1741✓70.1 3/25/16Qualifier1749Guatemala146074.8 6/14/02World Cup1832Poland1653—73.7 7/23/00Qualifier1799Costa Rica157167.6 Before coach Bruce Arena gets too much of the blame, it’s important to remember that it was the failures of the team under his predecessor, Jurgen Klinsmann, that put the Americans in this position in the first place. The team lost to Mexico and Costa Rica last November in this qualifying cycle, which led to Klinsmann’s ouster. And, ultimately, losing those points made what should have been a meaningless game against Trinidad a must-win. Earlier last year, the same Klinsmann team also inexplicably dropped a game to Guatemala in the group stage of qualifying, the second-worst loss by Elo.The advantages the U.S. squandered are many. America finally has a legitimate men’s soccer superstar in Christian Pulisic, but he alone could not score two goals for the team. (He got one.) And it’s not just a question of talent: The U.S. towers over these CONCACAF opponents when it comes to resources. Trinidad and Tobago, after all, has a population of 1.2 million — or roughly the size of the greater Hartford metro area. Here is how the 12 countries that made the group stage of the 2018 CONCACAF World Cup qualifying compare in gross domestic product and population — it probably won’t be hard to spot the U.S. 10/10/17Qualifier1761Trinidad & Tobago138982.7% A chart of the U.S. team’s Elo rating over the past two decades shows not so much steady growth but a series of peaks and valleys with, at the moment, no overall progress to speak of. No one still believes that we will win.On Tuesday night, it all fell apart for the U.S. men’s national soccer team. A seven tournament, 24-year streak of consecutive World Cup berths was snapped in cartoonishly heartbreaking fashion.Coming into the match, American fans were rightfully confident. All it would take to qualify for the World Cup was a win or a tie against Trinidad and Tobago, a team that had nothing to play for but pride and only one win in nine matches in the final qualifying group. And even if somehow the U.S. lost, Honduras and Panama would both need victories over the top two teams in the group, Mexico and Costa Rica, to complete the elimination. If the USMNT lost and only one of Honduras or Panama won, the US would be headed for a playoff against Australia. By ESPN’s Soccer Power Index, the United States had a 93 percent chance of reaching its eighth consecutive World Cup.Then the U.S. conceded two goals in the first half — first an own goal and then a blistering 35-yard strike — despite giving up little in the way of high-quality chances. And despite a halftime switch to bring on Clint Dempsey and line up two attackers behind strikers Bobby Wood and Jozy Altidore, the U.S. could not create the chances to level the score. USMNT fans could only watch in horror, and Panama and Honduras both clawed back first-half deficits to knock the U.S. out of World Cup qualification.U.S. men’s soccer is obviously no stranger to embarrassment and heartbreak on the international stage. In the 1998 World Cup and the 2006 World Cup — the last two on European soil — it combined for one tie and five losses. In 2015, the team was stunned at home in the Gold Cup semifinal by Jamaica, which at the time was ranked 76th in the world by FIFA. But what happened Tuesday night may stand alone.Looking only at World Cup matches and qualifiers, it was the worst loss in USMNT’s history based on the Elo rating system. Going into the game, Elo gave the U.S. an 83 percent chance of beating Trinidad and Tobago, making the Americans huge favorites even after accounting for the fact that they were playing on the road. Going back to 1885, the American men had never lost a match at that level when they had such a high probability of winning. And it came with all the chips on the table. You cannot blame U.S. soccer fans for being a little woozy this morning. For every step taken, there’s been a step back — no matter who has been the coach. The team made a breakthrough in 1994 when it reached the knockout stage for the first time in the expanded World Cup era.1It was expanded to 24 teams in 1982 and to 32 teams in 1998. It followed that by crashing out in 1998. The Americans stunned Portugal in the group stage in 2002 and made its first modern-era quarterfinals with a win over Mexico in the round of 16. It followed that by being a complete also-ran in 2006. So if the heroics in 2010 and 2014 — when the team fought through tough groups to survive and advance in dramatic fashion — gave the U.S. any confidence, it has just been completely wiped out. This is not to say that money and size are everything in international soccer. The two biggest countries in the world by population — China and India — have made the World Cup just once (China in 2002), whereas Iceland, a country of just 340,000, will play in its first next summer. But the U.S is different. It has spent the last decade talking about long-term plans for soccer development. The U.S. Soccer Federation increased its staffing and pay for national team coaches and introduced new youth initiatives to build a better team from the ground up. It is hard to see the results of these ambitions on the field. We’re launching a sports newsletter. 🏆  Join the squad. Subscribe read more