Thanks to a stunning, overhead bicycle kick goal from Juan Carlos Garcia in the first half and some disorganized U.S. defending in the second, Honduras dealt Jurgen Klinsmann's team a stinging 2-1 defeat in the opening game of the Hexagonal round of qualifying for the 2014 World Cup.
After grabbing an early 1-0 lead through Clint Dempsey in the 36th minute, the U.S. defense was caught watching as Honduras recycled an overhit corner and Maynor Figueroa teed up Garcia in the heart of the penalty area just four minutes later. The 24-year-old Honduran defender timed his leap perfectly and brilliantly struck a shot that left U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard without a chance as it whizzed beneath the crossbar.
In the second half at Estadio Olímpico Metropolitano in San Pedro Sula, Honduras limited U.S. possession and pounced for the match-winning goal when Howard and central defenders Geoff Cameron and Omar Gonzalez conspired to allow a go-ahead tap in for Jerry Bengston in the 79th minute.
The slack defending by the United States on the two scoring plays for Honduras will surely quickly led to second guessing on Klinsmann's lineup, which dropped veteran defender, and longtime captain, Carlos Bocanegra in favor of the unproven Cameron-Gonzalez tandem.
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Jerry Bengston took advantage of a defensive mix-up to score the go-ahead goal in the 79th minute, and Honduras rallied to beat the United States 2-1 Wednesday in the opener of the final qualifying round for next year's World Cup.
Clint Dempsey put the Americans ahead in the 36th minute but the Americans, using a new-look defense that featured Omar Gonzalez and Timmy Chandler, gave up the lead when Juan Carlos Garcia tied the score in the 40th at San Pedro Sula.
Bengston, who plays for Major League Soccer's New England Revolution, scored the winner when defender Geoff Cameron and goalkeeper Tim Howard both went for a pass by Maynor Figueroa to Oscar Boniek Garcia. That allowed Garcia to tap the ball across to Bengston for a shot into an open net, and Gonzalez was too late to challenge him.