NBA legend Charles Barkley is no stranger to bold predictions. On Tuesday, Barkley generated headlines with one of his infamous guarantees.
Barkley predicted that the United States men’s soccer team would defeat the Netherlands in the knockout stage at the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
"We're going through the Netherlands. We opening up a can of whoop (expletive). I guarantee the Netherlands are in trouble," Barkley said.
The United States will play the Netherlands in the Round of 16. The match is scheduled for Saturday at 10 a.m. ET on FOX.
In group play, the USMNT advanced after defeating Iran in a must-win scenario. Christian Pulisic scored in the 38th minute en route to victory. It was the United States' first win at the World Cup after drawing with Wales and England.
"That’s what he does," U.S. coach Gregg Berhalter told reporters. "That’s the special quality that he has."
After missing the 2018 World Cup, the USMNT arrived in Qatar wanting to make a statement.
"Our goal is obviously to win the World Cup. In order to do that, we have to get to the knockout stages," Walker Zimmerman said before the Iran game.
The Netherlands defeated the Qatar and Senegal and tied Ecuador in Group A play.
Pulisic is day-to-day with a pelvic contusion after being evaluated at a local hospital. He sustained the injury after colliding with Iranian goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand.
Despite the injury, Barkley isn’t worried. He called out several elite nations that could stand in the path to the World Cup Final.
"I want Spain. I want Brazil. I want Germany," Barkley said. "I want France, but they got that boy (Kylian) Mbappe over there. He ain’t no joke. But, we going to beat the Netherlands."
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Charles Barkley guarantees USMNT victory over Netherlands at World Cup