Canada plays Honduras to 0-0 draw in CONCACAF World Cup qualifying | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Canada plays Honduras to 0-0 draw in CONCACAF World Cup qualifying

TORONTO - Canada had hoped to take two victories and some breathing room into a two-month break between World Cup qualifying games.

Instead, the Canadians played Honduras to a 0-0 draw Tuesday, settling for four points from their first two matches in the third round of CONCACAF qualifying as they continue their quest for the country's first World Cup berth since 1986.

The result was a frustrating one for Canada, which was coming off a 1-0 victory over Cuba on Friday in Havana and maintained most of the possession on the night in front of 16,132 fans at BMO Field.

Canada had numerous scoring opportunities, perhaps the best coming on a corner kick in the 90th minute that captain Kevin McKenna headed just wide of the Honduran goal.

Canadian defender David Edgar had two glorious chances, including a header off a corner kick in second half injury time that he knocked just wide of the net before the final whistle. He connected on a corner kick in the 68th minute that he put just wide left of the net, hollering at himself in frustration as he ran back up the pitch.

That came 10 minutes after Julian de Guzman launched a beautiful free kick directly on net that no Canadians in the crowded six-yard-box managed to get a touch on.

The 77th-ranked Canadians were the more disciplined and organized team, but the bigger, more athletic Hondurans proved dangerous on counterattacks.

No. 55 Honduras was coming off a 2-0 loss to 46th-ranked Panama in its opener last week.

The Canadians, meanwhile, had arrived back home riding momentum from a strong performance in Havana where they overcame scorching temperatures to win on a pitch that McKenna said was the worst he'd ever played on.

Tuesday's conditions were nearly perfect, with temperatures in the low 20s C and clear skies following an afternoon shower.

While there had been concerns over a pro-Honduran crowd — international games in this multicultural city have been like away games for Canada in the past — the majority of the fans were supporting the home team. The south grandstand was a sea of chanting red-and-white-clad supporters, while a group of several hundred Hondurans took up the north grandstand.

Canada has numerous scoring chances in the first half, most of them coming from Dwayne De Rosario. The veteran midfielder narrowly missed getting to a cross from Edgar before firing a long shot and a free kick from outside the 18-yard-box just over the net two minutes apart.

Atiba Hutchinson, who started after coming in as a second-half substitute versus Cuba, took a free kick for Canada in the 32nd minute after he was taken down just outside the 18-yard-box. He too fired well over the net.

Honduras had an excellent scoring chance in the 40th minute when Antony Lozano got his foot on a cross from Oscar Garcia, but he chipped it just over the net.

The top two teams in the group will advance to the final round of qualifying in the CONCACAF region, which covers North and Central America and the Caribbean.

Canada will travel to Panama and Honduras in the fall. The Canadians host Panama on Sept. 7 and Cuba on Oct. 12.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2012
The Canadian Press

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