Yes, this is going to make people who already don't like soccer like it even less. But it's actually possible that whether the U.S. advances on to the knockout round at the World Cup will depend on a coin flip.
The easiest thing to do is just win, baby, against Algeria and the United States moves along. Losing that game means they don't advance, which, they wouldn't deserve to. However, ties are where it gets complicated.
As pointed out on Deadspin on Friday, here's the deal...
If the US ties Algeria AND Slovenia and England tie, it comes down to tiebreakers. Slovenia would win the group with 5 points, and England and America would be tied with 3 points.
The first tiebreaker is goal differential. The US and England would have tied all three matches. No winner.
Second tiebreaker is goals scored. As of now, the US has scored 3, while England has scored 1. So this is in the United States' favor, but let's assume somehow they wind up tied in goals...
Third tiebreaker is points obtained in head-to-head matches. The US and England tied.
Fourth tiebreaker is goal differential in head-to-head matches. Once again, the US and England tied.
Fifth tiebreaker is goals scored head-to-head. This is getting silly... but since the US and England tied, then obviously their goals scored head-to-head are the same. Well done so far, FIFA.
If the US and England are still tied after all the aforementioned tiebreakers, FIFA flips a coin to decide who moves on.
Let's hope it doesn't come to that.