Canada finally secured one berth in world cup 2022 in the weekend, while USA and Mexico have to wait till March, 30 for their official ticket to Qatar.
CONCACAF World Cup qualifiers have seen the tight competition till the end for sealing three automatic spots plus one ticket to playoff. Traditionally, Mexico or USA lead the table but not this time. It is Canada, which had to start their qualifying round from the early stage, is on the top the standings and becomes the first one from the zone to confirm their spot in Qatar 2022.
After an unexpected loss in the previous fixture against Costa Rica in the midweek, John Herdman’s men did not waste their chance in the weekend’s game against Jamaica. They trashed the Reggae Boyz 4-0. Besiktas man Cyle Larin bagged the opener on 13th minute before Tajon Buchanan doubled their lead one minute before the interval. At the second half, they scored two more goals from Hoilett and Adrian Mariappa’s own goal. It was more than enough for Jonathan David and Co to return to the world cup final. Their last appearance was their debut in Mexico 1986. Unfortunately, they could not do much at the group stage as they were at the bottom of the table without snatching a single point against France, USSR and Hungary.
Meanwhile, USA and Mexico have to wait till the mid week for the securing their place in Qatar despite their win on the weekend. USMNT hammered Panama 5-1 with Christian Pulisic’s hattrick plus Paul Arriola’s and Ferreira’s goal, whereas El Sombrero only thumped Honduras 1-0 through Edson Alvarez’s single header.
Gregg Berhalter’s men are more likely to book the ticket for the year-end world cup even if they lose to Costa Rica in the final match. They have big goal difference than Joel Campbell and Co, +13 compared to +3, only. El Ticos only hope that Mexico stays unconvincing in their last game while playing host to El Salvador. Should Tata Martino’s side be held in a draw and they manage to beat USA, Costa Rica can fly directly to Qatar without having to wait in June for the international playoff.
Hirving Lozano and Co have been struggling in this qualifying campaign. This year they have only been able to win three times with only one goal difference against Jamaica, Panama and Honduras but failed to win over El Ticos and USMNT at their own iconic home turf, Azteca. Should they go down to the fourth in standings, Mexico will be taking the long road to the final round against Oceania qualifier winner, most likely New Zealand. They both met at the very same stage in World Cup 2014 playoff.