The deck was stacked against the United States Men’s National Team heading into their World Cup Qualifier against Honduras. The USMNT had zero points in the CONCACAF Hexagonal sitting in last place, numerous injuries to key players and Trinidad & Tobago had just won its game over third place Panama.
On a cold rainy night in San Jose, CA, Avaya Stadium hosted the World Cup Qualifier in front of 17,000-plus fans hoping to see their team pull out the win. It all but took five minutes for the USMNT to set the tempo as LA Galaxy forward Sebastian Lletget tapped in the first goal after Christian Pulisic‘s shot was deflected by Honduras keeper Donis Escober.
Michael Bradley quickly added the second in the 27th minute of play after his left-footed shot hit the back of the net sending the American fans into a frenzy chanting ‘USA! USA! USA!’.
From then on, it was the Pulisic and Clint Dempsey show as both players were absolutely brilliant on the pitch. Dempsey who made his return to the field after an irregular heartbeat kept him out of action since August 2016, notched a hat-trick for the USMNT giving the 34-year-old 55 international goals for the U.S. and bringing him within two of Landon Donovan’s record 57.
Borussia Dortmund star Pulisic continued to add to the hype as the teenage phenom scored the fourth overall goal for the USMNT and finished the match with three assists. His poise, control and playmaking was on full display on the field as he was the catalyst that propelled Team USA to victory.
The United States had nine total shots with eight of them directly on goal and six of them ending up in the back of the net. The win puts the USMNT in fourth place in the Hexagonal with seven games to go. The Americans will travel to Panama City next which could be huge if they get the road win since they are a point below Panama.
The way Bruce Arena’s troops are playing, the odds are in their favor to pull off a win. The United States’ defense has been solid under Arena who have yet to concede a goal under the head coach. The offense looked very dynamic with plenty of young attacking options like Pulisic, Lletget and Darlignton Nagbe and Jordan Morris and Bobby Wood possibly being available for the next match.