When Honduras beat the U.S. men’s soccer team in the CONCACAF tournament semifinals Sunday (March 28), their 2-1 victory kept the United States from qualifying for the Olympics for a third consecutive time.
The last time Team USA was denied an invitation to three consecutive Summer Olympics was when they missed the games in 1960, 1964 and 1968.
“Obviously, we’re devastated, absolutely devastated,” U.S. coach Jason Kreis said. “In our locker room, the guys are like it’s a tragedy–a tragedy.”
U.S. team captain Jackson Yueill added: “They were very well man-oriented to stop players, which didn’t give us a lot of time to kind of break them down.”
Honduras will now compete in the Olympics in Tokyo from July 21 to August 7. The other Latin American countries that will make a trip to this year’s games are Argentina, Brazil and Mexico, which claimed its place in the Olympics with a win over Canada, 2-0, Sunday night.
Mexico and Honduras will now play in the CONCACAF tournament finals on Tuesday (March 30). The other teams that qualified for the Olympics this year are Australia, Ivory Coast, Egypt, France, Germany, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, Romania, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and Spain.
With the men’s loss, many took the time to remind sports aficionados that the reigning Olympic champion U.S. women’s soccer team not only qualified for the games this year but are favorite to win a fifth gold medal.