Posted on October 16, 2012
KANSAS CITY, Kansas City — Guatemalan striker Carlos Ruiz, who connected for his 56th international goal in his team’s 3-1 World Cup qualifying loss to the United States on Tuesday night, said he is retiring from international soccer.
The defeat eliminated the Guatemalans from the competition as they finished in third place in CONCACAF Group with a 3-2-1 record and 10 points. They tied Jamaica in points, but lost out in goal differential to the Reggae Boyz, plus three to plus one.
“This was my last game,” Ruiz told the Associated Press. “I want to thank all the team, my family, my fans in Guatemala for all their support. It hurts not to go to a World Cup as a player but I will try to be with my national team in any other ways.”
This was the 33-year-old Ruiz’s fourth qualifying campaign.
Ruiz, long a thorn in the side of the U.S., stunned and silenced the sellout crowd in the fifth minute. He took a through ball from Jose Contreras, beat the U.S. defense went around the left side of the penalty area, forcing goalkeeper Tim Howard to commit himself before he tucked the ball into the unattended net.
While celebrating, Ruiz ran into the advertising board behind the goal and appeared to hurt his hand as he fell to the ground in apparent pain. He was attended to before getting up and resuming play. As it turned out, Ruiz was not as effective the rest of the match.
“He’s a warrior,” U.S. coach Juergen Klinsmann said. “Give credit to him.”
Photo: Carlos Ruiz, in pain after scoring his goal, has called it an international soccer career. Andy Mead/YCJ
Categories: Central America, Guatemala, U.S.A.
Tags: Carlos Ruiz, CONCACAF, Jose Contreras, Juergen Klinsmann, teras, Tim Howard, World Cup qualifying