The U.S. Men’s National Team closes out its March FIFA World Cup Qualifying dates with a visit to Panama to take on Los Canaleros on Tuesday, March 28 at Estadio Rommel Fernandez (10 p.m. ET; beIN Sports). Coming on the heels of the MNT’s all-important home clash with Honduras on March 24, the MNT will hope to head to Panama City with three points to their credit as the team looks to turn around from a disappointing start to the final round of qualification.
Historically speaking, the MNT has dominated its series with Panama, going 11-1-4 all-time and 5-0-1 in FIFA World Cup Qualifying. Additionally, the U.S. holds a 3-0-1 mark in Panama City, while returning head coach Bruce Arena has a career 3-0-2 record against Los Canaleros.
The U.S. has won five-straight World Cup Qualifying matches against Panama, including its last two visits which came in 2005 and 2013. The last qualifying match between the two sides served up pure drama, as the U.S. used stoppage time strikes from Graham Zusi and Aron Johannsson to earn a 3-2 comeback win at Estadio Rommel Fernandez. The result not only saw the U.S. finish atop the 2013 Hexagonal, but also made Panama narrowly miss out on fourth place in the group, which would have sent them to an Intercontinental Playoff against New Zealand to qualify for Brazil 2014. That opportunity instead went to Mexico.
|USA-Panama All-Time World Cup Qualifying Results|
|Date||Result||U.S. Goal Scorers||Site|
|Sept. 8, 2004||1-1 D||C. Jones||Panama City, Panama|
|Oct. 13, 2004||6-0 W||Donovan (2), E. Johnson (3), og||Washington, D.C.|
|June 8, 2005||3-0 W||Bocanegra, Donovan, McBride||Panama City, Panama|
|Oct. 12, 2005||2-0 W||Martino, Twellman||Foxborough, Mass.|
|June 11, 2013||2-0 W||Altidore, E. Johnson||Seattle, Wash.|
|Oct. 15, 2013||3-2 W||Orozco, Zusi, Johannsson||Panama City, Panama|
One of the most improved nations in CONCACAF, since 2011 Panama has given the U.S. plenty of trouble during CONCACAF Gold Cup play when Los Canaleros handed the MNT its first and still only Group Stage loss, a 2-1 defeat on June 11 in Tampa. While the U.S. topped Panama 1-0 in the 2013 Gold Cup Final, a Panama side under the direction of former Colombia, Ecuador and Guatemala manager Hernán Darío Gómez again gave the U.S. fits during the 2015 edition, drawing 1-1 in the Group Stage, before using penalty kicks to defeat the MNT in the Third Place Match.
While the U.S. will be using its March qualifying dates to make up ground after losing its first two games back in November, Panama comes into Matchday 3 and 4 in good position, having earned a 1-0 win at Honduras on Nov. 11 before gutting out a 0-0 home draw with Mexico four days later.
Panama most recently took part in the 2017 Copa Centroamericana, where they finished second behind Honduras, and will hope to enter the U.S. match with another three points from their visit to Trinidad & Tobago four days earlier.
PANAMA ANNOUNCES WORLD CUP QUALIFYING ROSTER
On March 9, the Federación Panameña de Fútbol (FEPAFUT) announced the roster head coach Hernán Darío Gómez would utilize for Los Canaleros’ upcoming qualifiers at Trinidad & Tobago (March 24) and home against the United States (March 28).