Yesterday saw the very first knockout fixture of the Qatar World Cup, as the Netherlands took on the USMNT.
Emboldened by their win against Iran, the Americans were in high spirits going into the game, and a few fans back in the States were especially animated with their support.
Among them was NBA television analyst Charles Barkley, who is a regular on TNT’s ‘Inside the NBA’.
The former basketball player turned USMNT cheerleader made a few brazen claims during a recent appearance on the show, saying ‘We going [to beat] the Netherlands. We’re gonna open up a can of whoop ass!’
With his voice teetering on the edge of cracking, he proclaimed, ‘I guraaannnteeee!, the Netherlands in trouble.’
And as if the cringe wasn’t already off the charts, he added, ‘I want Spain. I want Brazil. I want Germany. I want Fra…oh they got that boy Mbappé over there with France he ain’t no joke.’
Aside from displaying some gross overconfidence, Barkley also proved that you don’t need ball knowledge to rate ‘Muh-bappe’.
Nevertheless, what followed was a 3-1 humbling for the Yanks by the Dutch, no 7-game series, just a straight elimination.
And needless to say, Barkley’s comments returned to bite back.
It wasn’t just fans rubbing the misguided claims in his face, as Netherlands’ very own Memphis Depay joined in on the action.
The Barcelona forward was among the standouts for the Dutch during the game and even netted their second goal.
He clearly took note of Barkley’s boisterousness, as he took to Twitter to provide the ultimate clap back.
Paired alongside a picture of his astounded face, Depay added the caption ‘Lotta bark, no bite’.
Looks like 90 minutes wasn’t enough cooking for him.
Fans online loved the response, as reflected by the 200k likes the Tweet currently has.
With Canada, Australia and the USA all out of the competition,
the Football v Soccer scuffle is done and dusted.
However, all three nations put up some very resolute performances against the European Heavyweights, with Canada and US nearly pulling off shocking upsets
Given their displays in Qatar, 2026 looks well set up to be a really transformative campaign for these teams.
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