If you would have asked USMNT fans if they would have taken a draw against Wales to kick off the World Cup many would have taken it. After the 1-1 draw and the way the USMNT played it felt like a defeat, but nonetheless Gregg Berhalter’s side earned a valuable point that could be vital to get to the round of 16.

The USMNT’s history against England at the World Cup is a surprising favorable one, the United States defeated England 1-0 in the 1950 World Cup with a goal by Joe Gaetjens in the 38th minute. In 2010 the USMNT was able to get a hard-fought draw in a 1-1 match with a goal by Clint Dempsey in the 40th minute.

Now many USMNT fans are asking themselves what happens if the United States wins, draws, or loses to England, here are the scenarios for the USMNT to get to the round of 16.

Scenarios to get to Rd of 16 for USMNT

A USMNT loss to England would mean that the USA would need to defeat Iran in their third group game to have any chance of getting to the round of 16. On 4 points the USMNT would most likely need a Wales and Iran draw and England to defeat Wales. Still, the USMNT would be eliminated if Wales draws/wins over England and defeats Iran.

An Iran win against Wales would mean the USA and Iran would basically determine second place in their match up with Wales being in a must win scenario against England to stand a chance on goal differential tie breakers with Iran and the USMNT. 

A loss to England and a draw/defeat to Iran would mean automatic elimination for the USMNT. Iran would need to win both their game against Wales and the USMNT to have a chance to go through based on their poor goal differential, 4 points don’t seem to be enough.

A USMNT draw against England would mean a win over Iran will almost surely assure a round of 16 appearance, although the USMNT’s qualification would depend on goal differential in many cases against Wales if they draw and win their remaining group games. It’s hard to imagine the USMNT getting to the next round with 3 draws in a row in the group stage, the scenarios for advancement would be almost impossible.

A win over England and a draw/win over Iran assures the USMNT the round of 16 under any other scenario in the other games. Tiebreakers are determined by Goal differential then followed by Goals scored, Head-to-head result, Goal differential in matches between tied teams (only in three-way tie), Goals scored in matches between tied teams (only in three-way tie), Fair play tiebreaker (based on negative points for yellow and red cards), and lastly Drawing lots.