Greetings from a far less balmy Jacksonville.
After temperatures hovered in the upper 80s (with humidity that made it feel like it was in the 90s), today's atmosphere at EverBank Field feels much better -- it should be 82 degrees with 74-percent humidity making it feel like 87 degrees.
Showers are expected around 8 p.m., let's hope it holds off during game time.
In today's paper, I previewed how today's tune-up is far from the final product you'll see in eight days. The U.S. has time left to train, as well as a closed-door scrimmage against Belgium in Brazil. Still, you hope to see a more complete product against Nigeria.
As a side note: U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard will get his 100th cap today against Nigeria.
* For those who missed it, at his press conference on Friday Jurgen Klinsmann addressed his comments regarding Kobe Bryant.
"I have to say that I think there are some people who tried to take quotes out of context, because I'm a big Kobe Bryant fan," Klinsmann said. "It was said in the same way I have said always. It's great what you achieved up until now, but still you can always prove it today and tomorrow. There was absolutely nothing negative meant towards Kobe, who I admire a lot and who I've watched many times."
* Germany's Marco Reus, considered one of Germany's top players, has been ruled out of the World Cup after tearing ligaments in his ankle in the team's final tune-up before the World Cup. Reus was in tears after going down against Algeria.
"It's extremely regrettable both for him and for us," said head coach Joachim Low on Saturday.
Sampdoria defender Shkodran Mustafi was called in to replace Reus. One of the deepest teams in the tournament, Germany will still have plenty of weapons at its disposal when it meets the U.S. on June 26.
* In addition, Russian captain Roman Shirokov has been ruled out of the World Cup and will be replaced by Pavel Mogilevets.
U.S. vs. Nigeria
Kickoff: 6 p.m.
TV: ESPN, UniMas, ESPN3.com
U.S. Starting XI: Howard; Beasley, Cameron, Besler, Johnson; Jones, Beckerman; Bedoya, Bradley, Dempsey; Altidore.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun