US fails to reach 2018 World Cup; Argentina breathes sigh of relief
For the first time since 1986, the US Men’s National Team will be watching the World Cup from home. Falling 2-1 to Trinidad and Tobago, the US failed to qualify for Russia 2018. An early own-goal from Omar Gonzalez set the tone for the defeat, before Alvin Jones doubled the Trinidad and Tobago lead on 37 minutes. Despite a fightback, which included a goal straight after the half-time break from 19-yearold Christian Pulisic, American hearts were to be broken, with the defeat plunging the Americans into fifth place in the CONCACAF table.
“We didn’t qualify for the World Cup,” USMNT head coach Bruce Arena said following the game. “That was my job. To get the team qualified for the World Cup ... This game in my view was perfectly positioned for the US team and we failed on the day,” Arena continued. “We have no excuses. We failed today. We should have walked off this field with at least a point.” The final round of qualifiers in CONCACAF also saw Panama put Costa Rica to the sword, and Honduras eke out a 3-2 win against tabletopping Mexico.