18th Grand Slam
With a stoppage-time goal just moments away from World Cup elimination, Landon Donovan sent the United States into the knockout phase of South Africa 2010.
Donovan’s goal in the 91st minute gave the Americans a 1-0 victory over Algeria at Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Pretoria. It ended a day in which the Americans hit the goal post at least twice, were thwarted repeatedly by Algeria goalkeeper Rais M’Bolhi, missed a number of open nets, and had what seemed like a good first-half goal nullified by an offside call.
With England winning their match against Slovenia, 1-0, the Americans faced elimination if they could not break the 0-0 tie with the Algerians. But Tim Howard started a four-on-two counterattack by finding Donovan down the right side. Donovan passed to Jozy Altidore, who relayed to Dempsey, whose point-blank shot was wonderfully stopped by the onrushing M’Bolhi. But Donovan was there to bury the rebound, and amid scenes of ecstatic celebration, the Americans were through to the tournament’s knockout phase.