USA Hammers Panama, Takes Huge Step Toward Automatic Bid to 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar

USA Hammers Panama, Takes Huge Step Toward Automatic Bid to 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar article feature image

John Dorton/ISI Photos/Getty Images. Pictured: United States star Christian Pulisic.

Ninety minutes and anything but a catastrophic, blowout loss.

That’s all that stands in the way of the United States from booking its spot in the 2022 FIFA World Cup later this year after Sunday’s 5-1 thrashing of Panama at Exploria Stadium in Orlando. Christian Pulisic recorded a hat trick as the Americans took a massive step toward securing one of three automatic World Cup berths awarded to the CONCACAF region.

The victory put the USMNT in second in the qualifying table on 25 points, meaning it would have to endure a six-goal loss to Costa Rica in Wednesday’s clash at Estadio Nacional de Costa Rica in San José, Costa Rica. The fourth-place CONCACAF nation will head to a playoff with the Oceania winner.

Pulisic’s hat-trick goal was filthy 🥵

(via @FOXSoccer)

— B/R Football (@brfootball) March 28, 2022

As for Canada, the long wait is over. Manager John Herdman and his men are heading to Qatar for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

The Canadians booked their spot in arguably the world's most prestigious sporting event Sunday afternoon via a 4-0 rout of Jamaica, ending the nation's 36-year drought away from the tournament.

Canada, which sits atop the CONCACAF hexagonal standings on 28 points, jumped out to 2-0 lead at the half in front of a sold-out crowd at BMO Field in Toronto and cruised the rest of the way behind solid performances from Cyle Larin, Jonathan David and Tajon Buchanan.

🇨🇦 They've done it!

🤩 Canada reach the men's #WorldCup for the first time since 1986#WCQ | #WorldCup |

— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) March 27, 2022

Herdman made history in the process, becoming the first head coach to guide a men's and women's national team to the World Cup. Herdman is the former manager of the women's national team, which he oversaw from 2011-2018 before taking over the men's program.

Updated FIFA 2022 CONCACAF Standings

Costa Rica6-3-422
El Salvador2-7-410

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