Mucho gracias Estados Unidos!
The English translation of the headline is "Thank you very much, United States!" That is what the Mexican national soccer-- excuse me, futbol-- team is saying today. In an improbable reversal of fortune, two American goals within the last 3 minutes turned a 2-1 Panama lead into a 3-2 American victory-- in Panama City, no less. Within 3 minutes, Panama's home support went from "We're in the playoff for a spot" to "we're out of the World Cup."
Imagine in basketball that you are up by 5 points with 37 seconds left in overtime, and instead of advancing, you are defeated. That happened-- look up North Knox's girls semistate game vs. Heritage Christian in 2004. This American goal blitz is similar to that disappointing result. You go from preparing to go to Indianapolis to elimination from tournament competition. Panama is feeling that same shock, disappointment, and bewilderment-- only on a national scale. By contrast, a very sub-par (for them) Mexico heads to a playoff with New Zealand for a World Cup spot. Mexico goes into the playoff off a loss to Costa Rica last night-- a team, like the U-S, who already had a World Cup berth sewed up. Oh by the way, the third auto qualifier was Honduras.
Mexico is in, Panama is out-- all in a matter of two goals, and around 3 minutes. The Mexicans may forget this generosity later, but for now, Mexico is telling the gringos-- "Mucho Gracias!" However, there is stil work to do, but Mexico now has a chance to do it-- a chance they didn't have, except for 3 minutes of American brilliance. Mucho Gracias, indeed.
That's my take...I'm Tom Lee.
Tags : Topics : SportsSocial : SportsLocations : Indianapolis, Panama City