Who will Australia have to beat to get into the FIFA World Cup?

Scott Pryde Roar Guru

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    Australia’s inter-confederation playoff opponent has been determined in the final games of CONCACAF qualification on Wednesday morning (AEDT), with Honduras being the team to beat if the Socceroos want to get to the World Cup.

    While the United States of America were favourites to pick up a direct qualification spot, they choked on the big stage, losing 2-1 to the bottom-placed Trinidad and Tobago.

    Panama meanwhile, locked up third spot in the group with a 2-1 win over Costa Rica, while Honduras picked up a 3-2 win over Mexico to lock up fourth spot and the right to fight against the Socceroos for a spot on the grandest stage of them all.

    Heading into the final day of CONCACAF qualification, the USA were expected to waltz into third spot, the final which entitled a direct qualification.

    They simply needed to draw against Trinidad and Tobago, given they were on twelve points with a goal difference of five, against Panama and Honduras who both were on ten points with goal differences of -2 and -7 respectively.

    The USA made a mess of their opportunity though. The Carribean nation had won just one of their previous nine games, scoring five goals across the qualification window, but they put two past the USA who were unable to answer.

    Meanwhile, results went against them. Honduras clinched a 3-2 victory with seven minutes of injury time over the table-topping Mexico to move to 13 points, while Panama also moved to 13 with an 88th-minute goal sealing the deal against Costa Rica.

    The first leg of the inter-confederation play-off will be held in Honduras on November 10 – Saturday, November 11 (AEDT).

    The second leg will then be played at ANZ Stadium in Homebush on Wednesday, November 15 with the winner advancing to the FIFA World Cup.

    Scott Pryde
    Scott Pryde

    One of the mainstays of The Roar, Scott Pryde has written over 1,100 articles covering everything from rugby league to basketball, from tennis to cricket. You can follow him on Twitter @sk_pryde.