Previous
AS Roma
CSKA Moscow
ESPN3 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Bayern Munich
Manchester City
ESPN3 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Ajax Amsterdam
Paris Saint-Germain
ESPN3 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Barcelona
Apoel Nicosia
ESPN3 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Chelsea
Schalke 04
ESPN3 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
NK Maribor
Sporting Lisbon
ESPN3 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Athletic Bilbao
Shakhtar Donetsk
ESPN3 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Porto
BATE Borisov
ESPN3 6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Blackburn Rovers
Derby County
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Nottingham Forest
Fulham
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Fleetwood Town
Barnsley
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Montreal Impact
New York Red Bulls
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Bayamon FC
America
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Municipal
Real Espana
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Huachipato
U. Católica
9:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Universitario de Sucre
César Vallejo
10:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
River Plate
Godoy Cruz de Mendoza
12:15 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 0
Game Details
Libertad
Barcelona
12:15 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 1
Game Details
San Lorenzo
Defensa y Justicia
10:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Nueva Chicago
Boca Unidos
6:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Huracán
Crucero del Norte
10:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Aldosivi
Douglas Haig
11:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Guarini A. Franco
Ferro Carril Oeste
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Independiente Rivadavia
All Boys
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Patronato
Atlético Tucumán
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Sarmiento de Junín
Santamarina
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Gimnasia y Esgrima de Jujuy
Instituto de Córdoba
12:30 AM GMT
Game Details
At. San Luis
Correcaminos
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Irapuato
Altamira
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Oaxaca
Lobos BUAP
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Chiapas
Veracruz
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Queretaro
U.A.N.L
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
U. de G.
Atlas
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Cruzeiro
Atletico Paranaense
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
EC Vitória
Fluminense FC
10:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Figueirense FC
Criciúma
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Sport
Internacional
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Botafogo
Bahia
1:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Coritiba FBC
São Paulo
1:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Palmeiras
Flamengo
1:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Alianza Lima
Inti Gas Deportes
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
12 de Octubre
Nacional
9:00 PM GMT
Game Details
FC Seoul
Western Sydney Wanderers
0
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Bay United
Mamelodi Sundowns
Postp
Game Details
Chippa United
Orlando Pirates
Postp
Game Details
Free State Stars
Moroka Swallows
Postp
Game Details
Mpumalanga Black Aces
Ajax Cape Town
Postp
Game Details
Silver Stars
Pretoria Univ
Postp
Game Details
SuperSport United
Bloem Celtic
Postp
Game Details
Alajuelense
Belen
2:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Patriotas F.C.
La Equidad
8:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 0 - 0
Game Details
Atlético Junior
Llaneros
11:00 PM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 1
Game Details
Boyacá Chicó FC
Once Caldas
12:30 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 2
Game Details
Deportes Tolima
Independiente Medellín
12:30 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 1 - 0
Game Details
Independiente Santa Fe
Cucuta
12:45 AM GMT
Leg 2Aggregate: 2 - 1
Game Details
Next

Danny Welbeck will be worth the wait

Arsenal 7 hours ago
Read

Danny Welbeck will be worth the wait

Arsenal 7 hours ago
Read

Media slam Arsenal 'soft centre'

Arsenal 10 hours ago
Read
 Posted by ESPN Staff
Oct 5, 2009

Coup-torn Honduras eyes World Cup spot

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras -- Living in a divided nation, Hondurans have dealt with months of protests and huge foreign aid losses as two leaders have struggled for control of their country since a June coup.

Saturday, however, may provide a respite when the national soccer team faces the United States. A victory would be a giant step toward qualifying the tiny Central American country for only its second World Cup.

In fact, if No. 42 Honduras beats the 11th-ranked United States and Costa Rica somehow loses at home against already eliminated Trinidad and Tobago, Honduras would qualify for its first World Cup since 1982 in Spain.

"Soccer is pain relief," said former national team coach Ramon Maradiago. "It relaxes and distracts us. It pulls us out of bad feelings."

Recognizing the gravitas of the match, Honduras national team coach Reinaldo Rueda said it's going to be crucial for his players to "keep their heads cool."

"We are the dream team, but we don't believe it," said the Colombian coach, who has instilled greater discipline on the team.

The blue-and-white clad Honduras team is loaded with talented players, many of whom play for some of Europe's biggest clubs: Wilson Palacios (England's Tottenham); David Suazo (Italy's Inter Milan); and Maynor Figueroa and Hendry Thomas (England's Wigan).

"It will be something marvelous ... to achieve this feat and be part of it," Figueroa said. "I believe it will be something that will go down in the history books."

Soccer may accomplish what Honduran politicians cannot -- producing national unity.

Fans throughout history have dropped political fights to unite behind their teams, whether it's Hindu and Muslim cricket fanatics in India or Shia and Sunni soccer fans in Iraq. The Ivory Coast stopped a civil war long enough for everyone to cheer the national "Elephants" soccer team in its first World Cup appearance.

"I forget all the problems, political, economic and social, facing the country," said Maria Barahona, a housekeeper in Tegucigalpa.

This country has plenty of bad feelings to overcome.

President Manuel Zelaya was still in his pajamas when he was forced at gunpoint into a military truck and whisked by plane into forced exile in Costa Rica in a June 28 coup. He sneaked back into the country three months later and bolted into the Brazilian Embassy, where he has been trapped ever since.

Zelaya and Roberto Micheletti, who took over as president after Zelaya was deposed, have been unable to agree on anything, and Hondurans have fallen into further division as they back the dueling leaders.

Back on the field, just three teams from the region get automatic berths for the tournament in South Africa next year.

Going into the final round of games on Saturday and Oct. 14, the United States (5-2-1) leads the standings with 16 points, followed by Mexico (5-3) with 15 and Honduras (4-3-1) with 13. Costa Rica (4-4) has 12, El Salvador (2-4-2) eight and Trinidad (1-5-2) five.

The No. 4 team in the standings still could advance. It will go to a home-and-home playoff in November with the No. 5 nation from South America, which is now two-time champion Argentina.

The U.S. Soccer Federation said Monday that American midfielder Clint Dempsey will miss Saturday's game because of a sprained right shoulder. Dempsey has had five goals during the qualifying stage for the tournament.

Honduras' team wasted an early lead when it lost to the United States 2-1 at Chicago's Soldier Field in a qualifier in June, then twice lost 2-0 to a young U.S. team the following month at the CONCACAF Gold Cup.

More recently, the Catrachos have had to overcome recent curfews and airport closures -- and travel bans have made it hard for players who play with clubs around the world to practice together.

Despite the coup and suggestions the match might be moved, FIFA ruled the game will be played as planned at Honduras' Metropolitan Olympic Stadium, where the team is 8-0 in qualifying for next year's tournament.

The largest stadium in the country, the Olympic is a sea of blue and white for home games as 45,000 flag-waving, drum-beating, dancing fans whose deafening cheers (and occasional cups of tossed beer) pose a tough challenge for visiting teams.

Local soccer officials say the stadium itself could give them the edge, and they're not about to lose it.

"That match belongs to us and we won't allow anyone to trample over us and take the game elsewhere," Honduran federation secretary Alfredo Hawit said on La Prensa newspaper's Web site. "We played against Costa Rica and Trinidad and Tobago in the same climate of political crisis and nothing happened. We are going to defend tooth and nail (our right) to play this match in our country."

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.