US suffers 2-0 loss against Costa Rica, qualifies for FIFA World Cup anyway
- Nearly 35,000 people gathered to watch the game on Wednesday
- US has never won a qualifier in Costa Rica
- "The team's ecstatic", coach Gregg Berhalter said after the game
United States' men's football team has qualified for the upcoming FIFA World Cup in Qatar after an effortless game that was likely to have only one outcome, irrespective of who wins. The United States team went against Costa Rica and lost 2-0, and still qualified.
Last weekend, the United States defeated Panama's team with a score of 5-1. giving them a huge goal-difference margin. This meant that the only job the American side had on Wednesday was to avoid losing by six goals or more.
Even after getting thrashed by the Costa Rican side, the American side managed to secure a berth for this year’s championship, which is scheduled to kick off in November. The United States men's football team had a heartbreaking qualifying season before the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The team failed to make it to the league stages and was eliminated even before the tournament began.
Nearly 35,000 people gathered at National Stadium in San Jose to witness the United States securing a spot in the competition. The American team managed to do so by finishing amongst the top three nations in North and Cenftral America and the Caribbean.
American players on the bench walked onto the field at the final whistle and exchanged handshakes and hugs with their teammates who ended the game, while home fans cheered the Ticos.
“It's a proud moment for the team, proud moment for US soccer,” United States coach Gregg Berhalter said. “The team's ecstatic.”
While the United States won six of seven home games with one draw, it finished with one victory, three losses and three ties on the road. The Americans have never won a qualifier in Costa Rica, losing 10 and drawing two.
Qualifying will not be as onerous for the 2026 World Cup, which expands to 48 nations. The US, Mexico and Canada are co-hosts, and all three are expected to get automatic berths.