Costa Rica clinches World Cup berth on Waston's late goal

by Steven Clarke October 10, 2017, 0:06
Costa Rica clinches World Cup berth on Waston's late goal

"I believe unless something completely weird occurs, one point secures us third place in the group".

The U.S. will head to Trinidad on Tuesday knowing it can secure that berth with a second-straight win.

The match had been postponed by 24 hours after heavy rainfall, and a 66th minute goal from Eddie Hernandez for Honduras may have also delayed Costa Rican celebrations.

Three simultaneous games on Tuesday threatened to provide convoluted scenarios, but after results Friday and Saturday, the picture for the U.S.is relatively simple.

Costa Rica became the second member of the world Cup from the CONCACAF zone.

Although the "Ticos" mathematically had earned their spot in Russia in 2018, the 1-1 tie against the "catrachos", led by the "Ticos" former World Cup 2014 coach, was needed to concrete to reach the 16 point in the hexagonal a position to place in the top three teams to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia.

The fourth-place nation advances to a home-and-home playoff next month against Australia or Syria.

Given the U.S. MNT's advantage in goal difference on both Honduras and Panama, a draw in Trinidad & Tobago would nearly certainly do the job for head coach Bruce Arena's side. Honduras would have to win by 12.

The game was scheduled to begin Friday at 10 p.m. ET but the start time has been pushed back to Saturday at 6 p.m. ET. The only scenarios worth considering are ones in which the Americans lose.

Though one point is all it will take, after watching Costa Rica almost lose playing that way - and knowing that a loss could bring the US team down to fifth place - Arena didn't mince words when it came to the desired result Tuesday night.

That's all. It's that simple.


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