Thursday, 14 December, 2017

Panama 'ghost goal' helps eliminate United States of America from 2018 Russia World Cup

Panama 'ghost goal' helps eliminate United States of America from 2018 Russia World Cup Panama 'ghost goal' helps eliminate United States of America from 2018 Russia World Cup
Kristopher Love | 12 October, 2017, 12:55

Either way, we salute the Panama substitute who did what he had to do!

As assistant coach to Colombia he helped his country qualify for the 1990 and 1994 tournaments before guiding Colombia to the 1998 competition while in charge himself.

An unlikely sequence of results elsewhere in their qualifying group meant a win would be enough to seal their place in next year's tournament in Russian Federation.

No doubt he should be given a ticking-off for something so unsporting, but Panama's football authorities could be forgiven for turning a blind eye after their historic achievement. Teenage striker Ismael Diaz was on the books at Porto, along with Gabriel Torres, but the pair now play their football at Deportivo La Coruna and Lausanne respectively.

Panama claimed the final automatic spot in the 2018 World Cup from the North/Central American/Carribbean qualifiers at the expense of the United States, who are no doubt furious by Panama's equaliser against Costa Rica.

Their place at a eighth successive World Cup had been under threat since they
succumbed to home losses at the hands of Mexico and Costa Rica last November.

USA's shock 2-1 defeat to Trinidad and Tobago, coupled with Panama's 88th minute victor from Roman Torres to beat Costa Rica, meant the team from Central America finished third in the North/Central American qualifying and have booked their place in Russian Federation.

Round 4 - Jamaica 0 Panama 2, Panama 1 Costa Rica 2, Haiti 0 Panama 0, Panama 1 Haiti 0, Panama 2 Jamaica 0, Costa Rica 3 Panama 1.

His 88th-minute victor allowed them to perform the most timely leapfrog, jumping from fifth place up to the third and final CONCACAF automatic qualifying spot, behind Mexico and Costa Rica.