With Coach Sven-Goran Eriksson
's job on the line, Mexico snapped its four-game winless streak in World Cup
qualifying with a 2-0 win over Costa Rica Saturday before 105,000 fans at Azteca Stadium. Trinidad & Tobago, which will face the USA Wednesday in Nashville, was lucky to escape with a 1-1 tie
against Honduras in a battle of teams coached by Colombians. MEXICO-COSTA RICA.
The Tri got goals from Omar
and Pavel Pardo
to end its four-game winless streak in World Cup qualifying.
The win eased pressure on much-maligned coach Sven-Goran Eriksson
. It followed a weekend during which European-based stars Rafael Marquez
and Nery Castillo
Marquez, who is suspended and remained in Barcelona, blamed Mexico's recent problems in World Cup qualifying and its failure to qualify for
the 2008 Olympics and 2009 Under-20 World Cup on deep-rooted problems and said the problems would get worse if changes were made.
Castillo blasted the Mexican press, which has been
highly critical of the national team.
"Do you know what your problem is?" Castillo told reporters. "It's that I'm in Europe and you're in Mexico. And
you're always going to be in Mexico."
Castillo did not play Saturday against the Ticos but fans chanted his name when he warmed up on the sidelines. TRINIDAD & TOBAGO-HONDURAS.
In its Hexagonal opener, T&T blew a 2-0 lead at El Salvador and had to settle for a 2-2 tie after conceding two late goals. This
time, a lucky goal saved the Soca Warriors, who earned a 1-1 tie in Port of Spain.
Former Los Angeles Galaxy forward Carlos Pavon
after missing the Catrachos' opener against Costa Rica, put Honduras ahead with a goal early in the second half, and the Catrachos appeared to have the three points when goalie Noel Valladares
failed to hold on to sub Khleem Hyland
's shot in the 89th minute.
T&T was playing
without suspended captain Dwight Yorke
, and Coach Francisco Maturana
benched Yorke's Sunderland teammate, Kenwyne Jones
, in favor of Jason Scotland
The loss increased the pressure on Honduras coach Reynaldo Rueda
, a Colombian, like Maturana, heading into Wednesday's game against Mexico. The Catrachos, who are playing without injured star David Suazo
, were one of the favorites against winning its semifinal group ahead of Mexico, Jamaica and Canada, but they find themselves in last place with one
point after two games. March 28 in Mexico City Mexico 2 Costa Rica 0.
Goals: Bravo 20, Pardo pen.
53. Mexico --
G.Ochoa, Pinto, Galindo, Osorio (Magallon 79), Lopez, Leandro Augusto, Pardo, Arce, Guardado
(Torrado 79), Bravo, Vuoso. Costa Rica --
Gonzalez, Fernandez, Umana, Myrie (Alonso 60), Diaz, Borges, Granados (Saborio 46), Ruiz, Rojas, Furtado,
Sunsing (Brenes 51) Referee:
Terry Vaughn (USA). Att.:
100,500. March 28 in Port of Spain Trinidad & Tobago 1 Honduras 1.
Goals: Hyland 89; Pavon 50. Trinidad
& Tobago --
Williams. A.Edwards, K.Thomas, Lawrence, Wolfe, Leon, Theobald (Hyland, 60), C.Edwards, Daniel (Latapy, 65), Scotland (Jones, 60), John. Honduras --
Valladares, Garcia, Figueroa, Caballero, Chavez, H.Thomas, Palacios, de Leon, Guevara, Nunez (Chavez, 76), Pavon (Costly, 80). Referee:
Walter Quesada (Costa Rica). Standings: USA 4 points (4-2)
Costa Rica 3 points (2-2)
El Salvador 2 points (4-4)
Trinidad & Tobago 2 points (3-3)
Honduras 1 point (1-3)
Schedule: April 1
USA vs. Trinidad & Tobago
Honduras vs. Mexico
Costa Rica vs. El