Maynor Figueroa (pictured) has appeared in 47 World Cup qualifiers for Honduras. (Photo: AFP Services)
TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras – Defender Maynor Figueroa knows what is at stake for Honduras ahead of its next two World Cup qualifiers against Trinidad & Tobago (September 1, away) and the United States (September 5, home).
The Catrachos (1W-2D-3L, 6 points) sit fifth in the six-team CONCACAF Hexagonal table. A win over last-place T&T on Friday is almost required for the match against the third-place Americans (2-2-2, 8) -- four days later -- to have any genuine bearing on the automatic qualifying race for Russia 2018.
“I believe that there is no margin for error,” said Figueroa. “We have to look to add three. We are in a situation in that’s what we need. We hope to God that those three points come.”
That situation, however, is not yet dire. Honduras still controls its own destiny, especially with a win over the Trinidadians and if the fourth-place Panama (away v Mexico) and the U.S. (home v Costa Rica) lose.
“The possibilities are still there and it depends on us,” Figueroa remarked. “Like I said before, it is an important match. We are playing for everything. We have to prepare ourselves in the best way.”
One thing appears to be uncertain, despite a four-game WCQ winless streak, the Hondurans are in a confident mood.
“The team is motivated. The squad is strengthened and we have worked well,” finished Figueroa. “Now it’s just waiting for the match. The team is strong and we have to show it in the match.”
In their first Hexagonal meeting on November 15, 2016, Honduras defeated T&T, 3-0, on a goal by Romell Quioto (16’), Emilio Izaguirre (19’) and Eddie Hernandez (81’).