U.S. U-20s tie Honduras to remain top of group

March 7, 2009

The U.S. U-20 men played to a scoreless draw against Honduras in Group A action Sunday night at the CONCACAF U-20 Championship at Dwight Yorke Stadium in Bacolet, Tobago.

"As we had anticipated, the game against Honduras was very tough," U.S. head coach Thomas Rongen said in a press release. "We are happy that we were able to put ourselves in a good position to determine our own fate heading into our last game against El Salvador."

The draw keeps the U.S. atop the group with four points. Jamaica is in second place with three points, while Honduras has two points and El Salvador has one. All four teams are still in the running to advance to both the semifinals of the tournament and the 2009 FIFA Under-20 World Cup.

The U.S. controls its own fate and can secure advancement as one of the top two teams in the group with a win or tie against El Salvador on Tuesday.

Honduras kept the U.S. under pressure for long stretches and earned 11 corner kicks, but was denied numerous times by goalkeeper Brian Perk. Offensively, the U.S. struggled to generate many chances, with long throw-ins by Sheanon Williams causing the most problems for the Hondurans. However, after substitute Billy Schuler was sent off in the 60th minute for a tackle against Jose Israel Fonseca, the U.S. struggled for the remainder of the game with just 10 men.

The match was the eighth meeting at the U-20 level between the U.S. and Honduras in CONCACAF qualifying. Honduras has won half of the encounters, while the U.S. has just one win.