U.S. dumped from World Cup qualification as Honduras and Panama move on

Aubrey Yates
October 14, 2017

Needing only a tie and confident of victory against the world's 99th-ranked team, the USA was eliminated from World Cup contention Tuesday night with a 2-1 loss to Trinidad and Tobago that ended a run of seven straight American appearances at soccer's showcase.

Warner in an interview on radio on Wednesday said that it was correct to say that Tuesday night's win was "sweet revenge", in reference to Trinidad and Tobago's loss to U.S. in 1989, crushing local hopes of qualifying for World Cup 1990 in Italy.

Are you a soccer fan? Had that goal not counted, Panama would have finished with a draw and the United States would have finished the hexagonal group stage in fifth place and would have faced Australia in a home-and-away playoff round for the right to earn a chance to be in the World Cup next summer in Russian Federation.

For the home side is was a measure of revenge for the 1990 World Cup, when the U.S. qualified for the tournament for the first time in 40 years by winning in T+T and thereby denying the Caribbean nation a place.

Klinsmann lost his job as the 2018 qualifying campaign faltered. "So, whether or not we see fundamental change, I think, is the question". The stunning result, to a team that had gone 1-8 in qualifying play, caused heartbreak for U.S. fans, sent shock waves through the U.S. Soccer system and left Taylor Twellman irate. "The main focus was just on us". Then the trip to Costa Rica. "Last September 27 when the judge ruled against Jack Warner there was a party in the USA, they were quite happy", he said. The last stop was Trinidad & Tobago, where the U.S. needed only a single point to secure automatic qualification.

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The growth of soccer in the US isn't just about our home team. America, remember, hopes to co-host the next - as yet unassigned - World Cup in 2026. This hex proved that. We can't blame the other teams, we can't blame referees, we can't blame the weather.

The U.S. played with none of the verve and aggression that it showed in Friday's 4-0 hammering of Panama. All they needed was a draw to move on. We didn't get Pulisic into the game. "What can you say?"

Striker Blas Perez reacted rapidly and attempted to bundle the ball over the line, but despite the slightest of touches and the ball pretty much resting on the goal-line, Costa Rica defender Ronald Matarrita was able to intervene and put the ball out for a corner without a goal being scored. "It's one that will haunt me forever".

"(Revenge) was in the back of the head but I don't think that was the main goal", midfielder Leston Paul said. "This is the worst day of my career".

"It's a huge disappointment for everybody: for players, for the staff, for coaches, for the federation", Gulati said. "In some sense, 2022 starts tomorrow for us".

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