U.S. beats Panama 2-0 in World Cup qualifying

Associated PressJune 12, 2013 

WCup Panama US Soccer

USA's Clint Dempsey (8) tries to get a shot past Panama's Roman Torres (5) in the second half of a World Cup qualifier soccer match, Tuesday, June 11, 2013, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

TED S. WARREN — AP

SEATTLE — The United States and Honduras both took strides toward World Cup qualification with victories on Tuesday while Mexico's ambitions remain in the balance after being held by Costa Rica.

The U.S. won 2-0 at home against Panama to move to the top of CONCACAF standings with 10 points from five games.

Costa Rica (from five games) and Mexico (from six) are both on eight points to be second and third in the standings, after their 0-0 draw in Mexico City.

The top three qualify directly for Brazil 2014 while the fourth-placed team goes into a further intercontinental playoff against New Zealand.

Honduras moved up to fourth by winning 2-0 at home against Jamaica, and now sits only a point behind Mexico with a game in hand.

The United States got goals from Jozy Altidore in the 36th minute and Eddie Johnson in the 53rd to overcome Panama, which is in fifth, a point behind Honduras.

The Americans have a 22-2-0 home record in World Cup qualifiers dating back to 2001.

Honduras' goals against Jamaica came from Oscar Garcia in the 10th minute and Roger Rojas in the 88th.

CONCACAF qualifiers continue on Tuesday when the U.S. hosts Honduras, while Costa Rica is at home against Panama.

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