Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Honduras vs. USA, 2014 World Cup Qualifying: 2-1 to Honduras as USMNT suffer early Hex blow

Clint Dempsey got the USA off to a bright start, but a magnificent equaliser by Juan Garcia and a late winner from Jerry Bengston ultimately gave Honduras a crucial 2-1 home victory. Head to U.S. Soccer blog Stars and Stripes FC for more.

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Down go the USMNT

Clint Dempsey gave the United States an early lead, but a world class goal by Juan Carlos Garcia and a late defensive lapse from the USMNT allowed Honduras to win their World Cup qualifying final round opener.


Enjoy Juan Carlos Garcia's sublime overhead kick

Honduras responded well to Clint Dempsey's goal with a stunning overhead kick strike from Juan Carlos Garcia. Since we love you, we've got video of the goal for you to enjoy.


Two stellar goals have it 1-1 at halftime

The United States and Honduras have produced two stellar goals in the first half of their World Cup qualifier from San Pedro Sula, though Los Catrachos' strike was the much better of the two. Clint Dempsey opened the scoring after a slow start from the USMNT, but Juan Carlos Garcia fired the hosts back into the match with a stunning bicycle kick, and it's all tied up at 1-1 through 45 minutes of play.

It took a few minutes for the USMNT's new-look back line, playing together as a unit for the first time, to get on the same page. Jerry Bengston had a brilliant chance in the 7th minute at the end of a quick counter that featured Omar Gonzalez and Geoff Cameron failing to hold the same line.

Honduras remained the aggressors through the first half, creating multiple solid chances. Fabian Johnson had to clear off the line from a Roger Espinosa cross in the 31st, and Tim Howard was forced into a tough save on a curled shot from Mario Martinez two minutes later.

Momentum appeared to do a complete 180-degree turn in the 36th minute, when Dempsey opened the scoring for the United States. Jermaine Jones set up the chance with a brilliant chipped diagonal ball over the top of the defense, and Dempsey beat the Honduras offside trap. He shot with his first touch, firing past Noel Valladares from 12 yards to put the USMNT ahead.

Unfortunately for the visitors, their lead lasted less than five minutes. Garcia's unstoppable, spectacular bicycle kick goal came at the end of a corner kick, which the United States failed to clear the firs time around. Maynor Figueroa provided the assist, putting the ball on a platter.

It's been a scrappy first 45 minutes, with neither team establishing much of a rhythm, but Honduras have been the stronger side. The United States won't be disappointed with a draw from this match, but will need to do a better job of keeping the ball in the second half.


Honduras vs. USA: Lineups

Jürgen Klinsmann has thrown out a couple of minor curveballs in his United States team, though nothing truly shocking. Danny Williams is preferred to Graham Zusi, except the United States lineup makes it look like it's not about the need for a defensive midfielder. Eddie Johnson -- who has been a left winger recently -- is in the team along with Clint Dempsey and Jozy Altidore, meaning he's likely to operate on the right. Omar Gonzalez, who impressed in January, is preferred to Carlos Bocanegra. Altidore over Herculez Gomez is another minor surprise.

Honduras have left Osman Chavez and Jorge Claros on their bench, with Luis Garrido and Arnold Peralta getting into the team instead.

Honduras starting lineup (4-4-2): Noel Valladares; Arnold Peralta, Victor Bernárdez, Maynor Figueroa, Juan Carlos García; Boniek Garcia, Roger Espinoza, Luis Garrido, Mario Martínez; Jerry Bengtson, Carlo Costly

United States starting lineup (4-4-2): Tim Howard; Fabian Johnson, Omar Gonzalez, Geoff Cameron, Timothy Chandler; Eddie Johnson, Jermaine Jones, Michael Bradley, Danny Williams; Clint Dempsey, Jozy Altidore


Get to know Honduras with this scouting report

Chances are your knowledge about the USMNT is up to speed, but how's your knowledge about today's opponent Honduras? Black and Red United has a scouting report for you.


SSFC gets you ready for the US vs. Honduras match

The pressure is really on now as Jürgen Klinsmann and the USMNT begin the CONCACAF hexagonal round on the road to the 2014 World Cup. Our US Soccer blog Stars and Stripes has everything you need to know to be a prepared supporter.


TV info for Honduras vs. USA

Before American soccer fans start cursing beIN Sport, they should recall the way fans had to watch the last Honduras vs. USA match.


USA heads to hostile San Pedro Sula for Hex opener

Wednesday has been declared a national holiday in Honduras, where the U.S. will begin the final round of World Cup qualifying against the Catrachos.

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