Monday, August 17, 2009

Summer warm-ups for battles ahead

After their heroics in the Confederations Cup, the USA hosted the Gold Cup and were brought down to earth in a 2-2 draw with Haiti, but reached the final where they were thrashed 5-0 by Mexico. In the same competition Guadeloupe celebrated a 2-1 victory over Panama, and in group A El Salvador shocked Costa Rica with a 2-1 win, but finished bottom of the group which was won surprisingly by Canada.
Just over a month later Costa Rica suffered another setback losing 4-0 away to Honduras in a World Cup qualifier. Norway enjoyed the same result as they trampled ten-man Scotland in Oslo, and Croatia picked up 3 points with a 3-1 win in Belarus.
In friendly internationals the Republic of Ireland suffered their heaviest home defeat under Trapattoni losing 3-0 to Australia, and Mali were victorious by the same score-line against Burkina Faso in France. Webo scored both goals of the match for Cameroon in Austria while Uruguay lost 1-0 in Algeria. The Cypriot’s visit to Albania ended in a 6-1 defeat while Turkey enjoyed a 3-0 win in Ukraine, and Iran came from behind with late goals to win 3-2 away to Bosnia & Herzegovina. Chile continued to enjoy their lofty position in the football rankings after their 2-1 win in Denmark. September 5th-9th will be a vital period for teams still with a chance of qualifying for next year’s World Cup.

Watch goals from Gold Cup final