CONCACAF Preview: El Tri on the brink
Ah, yeah, it's Hexxy time! It's going to get so intense that teams are sure to climax and bust into the World Cup next summer, causing patriots of all types to moan praises to the lord. However, for some squads, the walk of shame is more likely, with El Tri leading the charge of teams ruing what they went to bed with. If Mexico fails to qualify, it will be the first time since 1990 the country has missed a World Cup.
Here is what's in store for the second to last - possibly pivotal - matchday of CONCACAF Hexagonal play:
Honduras vs. Costa Rica
Although Honduras has a match against group whipping boys, Jamaica, on the horizon for the final match in the Hex, they will want to avoid any nervy finale to their qualifying campaign with a good showing at home against the Ticos. Honduras is yet to be beaten at home but are likely to get the full effort from Costa Rica who is looking to top the group over the United States for a variety of reasons. Eight of Honduras' 11 points have come at home and the side is yet to lose within its borders. Solid domestic form plus the need for a win to ensure qualification makes us think Honduras will take this one. Considering they have scored two goals in each home Hex match so far, we are going with a 2-1 win for Honduras here.
United States vs. Jamaica
The stars and stripes enter this one able to relax... sort of. Topping the table by just a point, the USMNT will want to do all it can to get take top spot. Since FIFA decided to make the top eight nations in the next FIFA Rankings to be released on Oct. 17 the top seeds for the World Cup draw, there may be less motivation this year for the team to finish atop the Hex. However, the likes of Sacha Kljestan, Aron Johannson and Geoff Cameron will be breaking their backs to show Klinsmann they belong on the World Cup roster. It could be fun to watch for U.S. fans.
Mexico vs. Panama
This is a big one. A huge one. Muy, muy massivo. Simply put, Mexico has to win this game. Yes, we understand there is still a possibility that Mexico could lose this and qualify if they beat Costa Rica in their next fixture, but that would require Panama to get shellacked at home against the United States in the final matchday in order for El Tri to ensure the fourth spot in the table and a meeting with Oceania giants, New Zealand in a two-leg playoff for a spot in the World Cup Finals.
All fixtures on Friday, October 8. Check your local TV Guide to see channel listings... wait... this isn't the 90s. Check the interwebz... I have to lay off the drugs...