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Stop him if you can.
Sounders FC’s Eddie Johnson started and scored for the U.S. men’s national team in a 3-1 win against Honduras in the CONCACAF Gold Cup semifinals Wednesday.
As far as I can tell, this is the first time Johnson has scored in back-to-back USMNT games since 2004. His 17 international goals are tied for seventh in federation history with the likes of Jozy Altidore, DaMarcus Beasley and Earnie Stewart.
From a non-Sounders perspective, Landon Donovan was the main star with two goals and an assist for the U.S., which will face Panama in Sunday’s 1 p.m. final at Soldier Field in Chicago. Donovan has played a key role in the team’s last nine goals in the tournament as it looks like both he and Johnson will be hard to keep off the 2014 World Cup roster.
Coach Jurgen Klinsmann‘s squad is on a 10-game winning streak, extending its record, and could match another record with a 10th straight home win with a fifth Gold Cup championship (1991, 2002, 2005, 2007). The U.S., a four-time tournament runner-up, has gone 11-2-2 overall this year.
Klinsmann was ejected from the game in the final moments and could be facing suspension in the final.
Elsewhere, ex-Sounder Mario Martinez was on the bench but did not play for Honduras. More notes from U.S. Soccer after the jump…
- Landon Donovan is the only player on the USA’s Gold Cup roster to have started in all five matches during this year’s tournament, and he had played 432 straight minutes before being subbed out by Chris Wondolowski in the 72nd minute. He now has 33 career Gold Cup appearances.
- Donovan has at least one assist in three straight games and with an assist in the championship game would match the U.S. record of four, set by Donovan on two previous occasions in 2004 and 2009.
- Donovan now has 18 career Gold Cup goals, seven goals in 2013 to lead the team and increased his U.S. MNT career record to 56 goals.
- Along with its overall winning streak, the USA will have a chance to tie its U.S. home record winning streak of 10, which was set from June 15, 2008, through July 11, 2009.
- Alejandro Bedoya’s two assists were the first two of his international career.
- Captain DaMarcus Beasley made his 108th career appearance, moving within two of sixth-place Carlos Bocanegra and Paul Caligiuri (110 caps each).
- Nick Rimando became the fifth U.S. goalkeeper in the modern era to post five victories during a calendar year, improving to 5-0-0 in 2013. The other four goalkeepers to earn five or more wins in a year are: Tim Howard (five times), Kasey Keller (four times), Tony Meola (four times) and Troy Perkins (one time).
- Jurgen Klinsmann made three starting lineup changes from the USA’s quarterfinal victory against El Salvador on July 21. Midfielders Stuart Holden and Alejandro Bedoya earned the start ahead of Mix Diskerud and Joe Corona, while forward Eddie Johnson got the call ahead of Chris Wondolowski to play up front in a 4-2-3-1 formation against Honduras.
- The winner of the 2013 Gold Cup will qualify for a playoff against the winner of the 2015 tournament to determine the CONCACAF entrant in the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia.
- The U.S. moved to 14-4-3 all-time against Honduras and 11-2-2 against Honduras on U.S. soil.
- Honduras is one of only two teams to have beaten the United States this year, along with Belgium. Honduras rallied for a 2-1 victory against the U.S. on Feb. 6 in San Pedro Sula. It was the teams’ first meeting in the Final Round of 2014 FIFA World Cup Qualifying. Clint Dempsey had the USA’s lone goal to give his side a 1-0 lead.
- Wednesday’s match marked the fourth time the U.S. and Honduras have met in the knockout phase of the Gold Cup. The United States down Honduras in penalties after a scoreless draw to capture the inaugural championship in 1991. The USA earned 2-1 semifinal victories against Honduras in 2005 and 2009.
- Donovan, playing in his 150th career games, earned his seventh assist of the tournament. His seven assists in 2013 also tie his second-highest total for a calendar year, trailing only his record-setting 10-assist performance in 2009. He also increased his U.S. record total to 55 career assists.
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