Posted on June 13, 2012
TORONTO – Canada could only kick itself after it played Honduras to a scoreless draw in a World Cup Group C qualifier on Tuesday night.
The Canadians found themselves with several chances, but could not convert them into goals in the CONCACAF semifinal round match at BMO Field.
So, instead of earning six points from its opening two games, Canada is 1-0-1 with four points. The Hondurans, who were favored to win the group, secured their first point and are 0-1-1. Panama (2-0-0, six), which registered a 1-0 home win over Cuba (0-2-0, none), leads the group.
Kevin McKenna and Simeon Jackson each had chances late in the match from inside the penalty area but were unable to capitalize.
Canada controlled possession from the start against a tentative Honduras and dominated much of the midfield.
“I’m not happy with the point,” Canada coach Stephen Hart told reporters afterwards. “I thought we moved the ball well. We passed the ball well, we got into good situations and at times the final pass was just missing and some quality on the finish. Funnily enough, we created the better chances but unfortunately we didn’t score.”
Los Catrachos had won three of the last four meetings against Canada going back to 2008, including two World Cup qualifiers and a 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup quarterfinal. Canada last beat Honduras in a friendly in Montreal on Sept. 7, 2010.
Despite holding the advantage in possession and chances, Canada wasted repeated opportunites, eliciting groans from the crowd of 16,132.
Canada had two promising chances in three minutes midway through the first half. Dwayne De Rosario dribbled in from the left flank, turned inside and sent a drive over the Honduran goal in the 29th minute.
Atiba Hutchinson had a free kick moments later at the top of the penalty area after being fouled by Victor Bernardez, but sent his chance kick over the goal.
Honduras’ only solid chances came in the 40th minute when an onrushing Antony Lozano received a cross from Oscar Garcia, but sent it wide.
Honduran striker David Suazo, who was injured May 26 in a friendly against New Zealand, returned to the lineup. He came on in the second half, but failed to spark an attack that sputtered due to errant passes and a lack of creativity.
“I believe we can qualify with this team,” Honduras coach Luis Fernando Suarez said. “I will take a decision in a couple of months the team is just going to start from scratch. I’m going to assess the new team and then take a position.”
Sporting Kansas City midfielder Roger Espinoza almost gave the visitors the lead but sent a drive just over the crossbar. In injury time Will Johnson set up McKenna and Jackson with corner kicks. McKenna headed his over the cross bar and Jackson headed his attempt wide.
Photo: Roger Espinoza almost scored for Honduras late in the match. Andy Mead/YCJ
Categories: Canada, Central America, Cuba, Honduras, Panama
Tags: BMO Field, David Suazo, Kevin McKenna, Los Catrachos, Luis Fernand Suarez, Simeon Jackson, Stephen Hart, World Cup qualifying