Five Things to Know About Honduras

With both teams sitting level on eight points, the U.S. Men’s National Team’s clash at Honduras on Tuesday promises to be a crucial test in its bid to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. Before the match in San Pedro Sula kicks off, learn more about the MNT’s opponent in Tuesday’s Matchday 8 qualifier (5:30 p.m. ET; beIN Sports, UNIVERSO).  

The Country

With a population of 8.9 million people, Honduras is the second-most populous nation in Central America behind only Guatemala. The country sits in the heart of the isthmus, touching Guatemala and El Salvador to the west, a small bit of the Pacific Ocean and Nicaragua to the south and a large portion of the Caribbean Sea to the north and east.

The Honduran flag features two blue bars at the top and bottom which symbolize the Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea. The white bar in the middle features five stars centered in an “X” pattern which represent the five nations of the former Federal Republic of Central America (Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua.

Los Catrachos’ History

One of the more successful nations in Central American football, Honduras has long been a thorn in the side of fellow CONCACAF nations. Having first qualified for the FIFA World Cup in 1982, Los Catrachos have risen towards the top of the region in recent years with their qualification to the 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cups.

How They Got Here

Honduras arrived in the Final Round of CONCACAF Qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup by virtue of a second-place finish in Semifinal Round Group A. Los Catrachos went 2-2-2 during six games during 2015 and 2016, finishing one point ahead of third-place Canada to book their place in the Hex.

Honduras had mixed fortunes at the beginning of the Final Round, dropping their opening match 1-0 at home against Panama before bouncing back with a 3-1 win against Trinidad & Tobago in November 2016. Things became more difficult this past March when they were on the tough end of a 6-0 thumping against the USA in San Jose and could only muster a 1-1 draw at home four days later against Costa Rica.

In June’s qualifiers, Honduras again experienced difficulty on the road with a 3-0 defeat at Mexico on June 8.  On the road in Panama City five days later, Honduras looked like they might cancel out their opening home defeat, but Los Canaleros captain Roman Torres came through with a 90th minute equalizer to share spoils in a 2-2 draw.

On Friday, Honduras earned a crucial 2-1 away victory at Trinidad & Tobago to pull level with the U.S. on eight points, making the stakes of Tuesday’s match even greater.

A History with the United States

The USA’s history with Honduras is one of the most interesting of any of the MNT’s regular CONCACAF opponents. The MNT actually won its first away World Cup Qualifier in Central America in Honduras, defeating Los Catrachos 1-0 on March 17, 1965 in San Pedro Sula. That win was the first of three U.S. victories away to Honduras in qualifying, with the MNT also earning a 2-1 result on March 28, 2001 and 3-2 win on Oct. 10, 2009 -- a victory that also clinched the USA’s berth in the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

While the MNT’s three away World Cup Qualifying wins in Honduras are the most in any Central American country, Honduras has also handed the U.S. a few stinging results. Los Catrachos responded to the MNT’s 2001 win in San Pedro Sula with a wild 3-2 victory later that round in Washington, D.C., ending the team’s 15-year home unbeaten streak in World Cup Qualifying. They also outlasted a tired U.S. team to earn a 2-1 victory in San Pedro Sula in the opening match of the Final Round of Qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

While the U.S. holds a decisive 16-4-4 all-time record and 6-2-1 advantage in qualifying, Honduras has proven to be a handful for CONCACAF nations throughout the years and Tuesday’s match is unlikely to be any different.

USA-Honduras All-Time World Cup Qualifying Results



U.S. Goal Scorers


March 17, 1965

1-0 W

E. Murphy

San Pedro Sula, Honduras

March 21, 1965

1-1 D

E. Murphy

Tegucigalpa, Honduras

March 28, 2001

2-1 W

Stewart, Mathis

San Pedro Sula, Honduras

Sept. 1, 2001

2-3 L

Stewart (2)

Washington, D.C.

June 6, 2009

2-1 W

Donovan, Bocanegra

Chicago, Ill.

Oct. 10, 2009

3-2 W

Casey (2), Donovan

San Pedro Sula, Honduras

Feb. 6, 2013

1-2 L


San Pedro Sula, Honduras

June 18, 2013

1-0 W


Sandy, Utah

March 24, 2017

6-0 W

Lletget, Bradley, Dempsey (3), Pulisic

San Jose, Calif.

Hondurans in M.L.S.

There is a long history of Honduran internationals playing a significant role in M.L.S. clubs. Seven years after his international retirement, 2004 M.L.S. MVP and Golden Boot winner Amado Guevara remains the Honduras leader in caps, while the country’s all-time leading scorer, Carlos Pavon, also featured for the LA Galaxy in 2007.

A total of seven current national team players are in the league this year, including four who were part of the 2014 FIFA World Cup squad: Víctor Bernardez (San Jose Earthquakes), Roger Espinoza (Sporting Kansas City), Maynor Figueroa (FC Dallas), and Boniek Garcia (Houston Dynamo).

Here's a look at the roster head coach Jorge Luis Pinto called up last week: 

GOALKEEPERS (3): Ricardo Canales (Vida), Donis Escober (Olimpia), Luis López (Real España)

DEFENDERS (8): Ever Alvarado (Olimpia), Bryan Beckeles (Necaxa/MEX), Felix Crisanto (Motagua), Henry Figueroa (Motagua), Maynor Figueroa (FC Dallas/USA), Jhonny Leverón (Marathón), Jhonny Palacios (Olimpia), Carlos Sánchez (Honduras Progreso)

MIDFIELDERS (10): Bryan Acosta (Tenerife/ESP), Jorge Claros (Real España), Juan Ángel Delgado (Honduras Progreso) Carlos Discua (Motagua), Oscar Boniek García (Houston Dynamo/USA) Alexander López (Olimpia), Alfredo Mejía (Xanthi/GRE), Oliver Morazán (Olimpia), Esdras Padilla (Juticalpa) Sergio Peña (Real Sociedad)

FORWARDS (7): Carlo Costly (Olimpia), Alberth Elis (Houston Dynamo/USA), Eddie Hernández (Unattached) Ovidio Lanza (Juticalpa) Anthony Lozano (Barcelona B/ESP), Rony Martínez (Baoding Rongda/CHN), Romell Quioto (Houston Dynamo/USA)