Monday, August 29, 2016

Besler, Zusi Called Up, Espinoza Turns Down Call

Sporting Kansas City has a pair of players called up for national team duty in the upcoming international break, Matt Besler and Graham Zusi were both called into the US team that will finish out the fourth round of World Cup qualifying with games at St. Vincent and the Grenadines and home against Trinidad and Tobago. The US currently sit second in their group on seven points through the first four games having last split their two games against Guatemala with a win and a loss. The US can clinch advancement to the next round of qualifying with a win on Friday if Trinidad also beats Guatemala in Port of Spain. If those results occur it would make the USA's game in Jacksonville on Tuesday September 6th meaningless as both teams would be through to the "Hex".

One name not going to World Cup qualifiers that had been expected to was Roger Espinoza. Espinoza was originally on the list of players called up by Honduras for their World Cup qualifiers against Canada and Mexico. Reports stated that he had turn downed the call for personal problems and Sporting KC later confirmed that while Espinoza was called up he was not going to be going. Honduras are currently in second place in their group, tied with Canada on four points. The two teams face off Friday in Honduras, a location where Canada lost 8-1 to see their 2014 World Cup qualifying hopes end. Honduras will want to get a win, and pile on to advance because goal difference is the first tiebreaker. Currently Honduras sits on minus 1 with Canada on minus 4. With Honduras closing out on the road in Mexico and Canada hosting El Salvador, padding their goal difference heading into that file game will be important for Honduras, but they'll be doing it without Espinoza.

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