The United States men’s soccer team’s draw against Mexico was worth more than a point in the standings.
The result lifted the U.S. into a second-place tie on points with Costa Rica in the latest CONCACAF 2018 World Cup qualifying standings in the final round. The current standings represent an unfinished round of games, as Costa Rica will host Trinidad and Tobago and Honduras will visit Panama on Tuesday night.
Regardless of those outcomes, Mexico still will top the CONCACAF standings, and USA will occupy either one of the automatic-qualification or inter-confederation-playoff spots with four games remaining.
USA’s and Mexico’s fans should enjoy viewing the standings as their teams break from World Cup qualifying until September. Mexico is all but certain to qualify and needs just one or two more wins to make clinch its place in next summer’s tournament in Russia. The U.S. already has played its three most difficult games (on paper), having lost at Costa Rica, lost at home to Mexico and drawn on the road against “El Tri.”
Should USA beat Costa Rica on Sept. 1 at home and earn at least a draw Sept. 5 at Honduras, it will be in perfect position to qualify ahead of October’s winnable games against Panama and at Trinidad and Tobago.
Thumbnail photo via Isaiah J. Downing/USA TODAY Sports Images
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