Instead, the USA took a step backward with a disappointing 2-0 loss to Costa Rica at Red Bull Arena Friday night.
"We're going to have to have short memories", defender Graham Zusi said. We didn't play well, but we still have three games left in the competition.
"At the end it didn't sound like 50-50", USA goalkeeper Tim Howard said after the match, suggesting that the Central American team had more supporters. Urena, the lone forward in a 4-5-1 formation, doubled the lead in the 82nd with a shot from 18 yards after David Guzman intercepted a poor pass by Geoff Cameron. "We pushed hard, couldn't get back to 1-1 and they made a play at the end".
"We didn't capitalize on potential opportunities". "They outplayed us and outcoached us tonight".
Mexico defeated Panama 1-0 here Friday to seal their qualification for the 2018 World Cup finals in Russian Federation from the CONCACAF region.
Bruce Arena has a lot of thinking to do before Tuesday's match in Honduras.
The Americans will face Honduras on September 5 without him and then finish their World Cup qualifying matches on October 6 against Panama and October 10 against Trinidad & Tobago. "So it's going to be a battle amongst the remaining four teams".
The U.S. has had its share of success in Honduras, winning World Cup qualifiers on three previous occasions, the most recent being 2009.
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"Qualifying has been in jeopardy since a year ago for most teams", he said. Two home losses (one in the reputed stronghold of Columbus, Ohio) in the Hex is unprecedented and for the first time in many supporters' memories, the team is running the risk of failing to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation. It completes the CONCACAF qualifying October 10 in Trinidad and Tobago. Starting forward Jozy Altidore picked up a yellow card that will cause him to miss the Honduras game due to accumulation.
US vs Costa Rica: The two football teams U.S. and Costa Rica of Central America, Carribean are going to face each other today in the World Cup Qualifying.
"(Pulisic) had a tough game today", Arena said. I think he got a little frustrated.
After today's game versus Costa Rica, the US team will head to San Pedro Sula to take on Honduras.
Costa Rica went ahead after Howard cleared the ball to past midfield and the Ticos won possession. USA forward Bobby Wood (9) and Costa Rica midfielder Bryan Ruiz (10) watch. Urena slotted the ball to the far post, past the goalkeeper's outstretched right arm.
Ream, taking over from injured John Brooks, was paired with Cameron in central defense for the first time. The game will be played at Red Bull Arena, just across the Hudson River from Manhattan.
Going forward, the United States looked to counter quickly through Pulisic, but the teenager rarely had support.
The U.S. faithful certainly made their presence felt known but there were still too many times, especially after Marco Ureña scored both goals, when it seemed like Los Ticos were playing at home.