CONCACAF WCQ round-up
Jamaica sprung a major surprise in the third round of qualifying by beating the United States 2-1 and earning sole leadership of Group A.
Last Updated: 08/09/12 10:02am
Jamaica sprung a major surprise in the third round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying by coming from a goal down to defeat the United States 2-1 in Kingston and earning sole leadership of Group A.
New Tottenham midfielder Clint Dempsey needed only 36 seconds to put the Americans ahead, but Leeds midfielder Rodolph Austin equalised 20 minutes later with a fierce free-kick which deflected off defender Kyle Beckerman and beat Tim Howard.
Then, in the second half, Everton goalkeeper Howard was beaten by another free-kick, this time Luton Shelton the man on target.
The result lifted the Reggae Boyz to the top of the pool on seven points - two ahead of the Americans and Guatemala, who had to work hard to sink Antigua & Barbuda 3-1.
Peter Byers silenced the home crowd by putting the visitors ahead in the 38th minute, but Carlos Ruiz's second-half brace turned the game on its head before substitute Dwight Pezzarossi sealed matters in stoppage-time.
The result left Antigua & Barbuda bottom of the group on one point ahead of Tuesday's fixtures, in which they face Guatemala and the USA host Jamaica.
In Group B, Mexico maintained their perfect record with a straightforward 2-0 victory over Costa Rica in San Jose.
Carlos Salcido volleyed home the opener two minutes before the interval, after being set up by Javier Hernandez, and Jesus Zavala converted a corner to double the Mexicans' advantage seven minutes into the second half.
In the pool's other game, El Salvador could only manage a 2-2 home draw against Guyana. Isidro Gutierrez and Osael Romero netted the goals for the hosts, with Treyon Bobb twice on target for the visitors.
Mexico's win moved them to the brink of clinching their place in the final qualifying round. They advanced to nine points - five ahead Costa Rica and eight more than the Salvadorians. On Tuesday, Mexico face Costa Rica and Guyana will host El Salvador.
Finally, in Toronto, Canada beat Panama 1-0 thanks to a 77th-minute strike by veteran Dwayne De Rosario - and overtook the Canaleros at the Group C summit.
Stephen Hart's Canadians progressed to seven points - one more than Panama - ahead of Tuesday's return clash between the nations.
In the other pool match, goals from Jerry Bengston, Victor Bernardez and Marvin Chavez saw Honduras stroll to a 3-0 win over Cuba in Havana. The teams will meet again in San Pedro Sula on Tuesday.