US Soccer in many parts of the world is still looked at as a joke. Hard working, but out of their class.
It's not unlike many upstart businesses up against the corporate giants. Think Netflix vs. Blockbuster.
Netflix was doing things differently; they proved that they didn't have to play by the industry rules.
Going into this World Cup, many feel that the biggest weakness of the Americans in playing in America.
I contend that our nation's perceived weakness is actually a strength, especially in a year when the quadrennial tournament is played in a hot climate like Brazil.
As the European and Asian teams are finding out, the heat is pretty demanding and demoralizing.
And yet, the heat and humidity is what many Americans in Major League Soccer compete with every summer day. MLS plays a season opposite that of the rest of the world. While the rest of the world plays in the cool months of the Fall, Winter and Early Spring, the US competes during the entire Summer.
For those in Texas, California or heck, even hot and humid Chicago in the summer, you know how stifling that heat can be. It at times can be so hot as to prevent you from going to the ice cream stand.
Now imagine running for 90 minutes in that heat.
The Americans have a lot of experience with the heat and know how their bodies can respond to the high temperatures.
With that said, Brazil 2014 is a major Opportunity for this team to go far, and dare I say, challenge to win the Cup.
Despite what the "experts" may say of your team, or your company, find a way to change your perceived weakness into a strength.
Do your research and know your threat, as the US did in preparation to face Ghana. The US through careful study and preparation turned their threat into a big opportunity that they did take advantage of.
A careful SWOT Analysis of any competitive venture can prepare you to deal with any situation at an optimal level.