Honduras tip Costa Rica for Centroamericana title
The final day of Copa Centroamericana competition on Sunday was a glorious one for FC Dallas' Marvin Chavez, but a day to forget for Arturo Alvarez (above) and El Salvador.
Honduras clinched their third Central American title with a 2-1 victory over 10-man Costa Rica in the final.
Walter Martínez scored in the eighth minute for los Catrachos, and Emil Martínez added the eventual winner in the 53rd. Costa Rica’s Marco Ureña pulled on back in the 73rd, but it wasn’t enough to give los Ticos their seventh regional title and first since 2007.
Costa Rica was reduced to 10 men in the 63rd minute when former Chivas USA defender Dario Delgado received a second yellow for a second foul on Walter Martínez.
With the victory, Honduras snapped a five-match unbeaten streak against their Central American rivals.
FCD winger Chávez, who scored in the semifinals for the Catrachos, was an unused substitute Sunday. New York Red Bulls left back Roy Miller was again a starter for Costa Rica, as were Delgado and ex-Philadelphia Union wingback David Myrie.
In the third-place game earlier on Sunday, hosts Panama topped El Salvador 5-4 on penalties after a scoreless draw in regulation. Real Salt Lake’s Alvarez, who opened the shootout, was the only player who failed to convert his spot kick, sending his shot right at Panamanian ‘keeper Jaime Penedo.
The bizarre match had to be suspended twice in the second half as stadium stewards had to fumigate to rid the Salvadoran goal of bees.
Chicago Fire defender Deris Umanzor went the full 90 for El Salvador, who get a chance at redemption this summer. The top five finishers in the Copa Centroamericana qualify for the CONCACAF Gold Cup. Honduras, Costa Rica, Panama, El Salvador and Guatemala will join the 12-team field that includes the US, Mexico and Canada.
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