USA vs. Honduras, 2013 Gold Cup semifinals: Final score 3-1, simple win for USMNT as Jurgen Klinsmann gets dismissed

USA TODAY Sports

The United States dealt with a similar problem as they did against El Salvador, going up 2-0 comfortably against Honduras, then conceding. Fortunately, they killed off the game much more quickly this time around. Also, Jurgen Klinsmann got sent off.

Welcome to the Gold Cup final, America! The United States downed Honduras 3-1 at Jerry World and await the winner of the late semifinal between Panama and Mexico.

Eddie Johnson got the USMNT off to a brilliant start with a goal in the 11th minute. EJ, who got the start over Chris Wondolowski following his excellent substitute appearance against El Salvador, had a big part in starting the move before finishing it off as well. Kyle Beckerman started the ball forward with a pass to Landon Donovan and Johnson made a great dummy run to draw the defense forward and away from Donovan, then turned towards the goal. Donovan played a perfect first-touch pass and Johnson blew by Osman Chavez before finishing a one-on-one with goalkeeper Donis Escober.

The United States were a bit upset when they were denied a 16th minute penalty after Carlos Garcia elbowed Stuart Holden in the face, but their anger was short lived. Donovan put the U.S. up in the 27th minute, set up by Johnson and Alejandro Bedoya. Johnson won a 50-50 header and flicked backwards to start the move and Bedoya put the ball into the center of the box. Donovan took a touch with his chest to set himself up, then finished to double the United States lead.

Things got a bit dicey just after the halftime break when Honduras took advantage of some poor marking to pull one goal back on a free kick. Marvin Chavez, who entered the game as a substitute, set up Nery Media with an out-swinging ball from the right flank and the Honduran defender powered a header past Nick Rimando. It wasn't entirely obvious who lost him, and it looked as if he was always unmarked.

Fortunately for U.S. fans, they didn't have to be concerned for long. The USMNT hit back instantly, with Donovan netting his second goal of the game. Clarence Goodson played a long ball forward to start the attack and Johnson flicked it behind, right into the path of Bedoya, just like he did for the first goal. Once again, Bedoya squared and Donovan finished, making it 3-1.

The remainder of the game was rather uneventful, save for the end of the game. Referee Walter Quesada, who had a very shaky game, dismissed Jurgen Klinsmann after he had a negative reaction to a foul call against DaMarcus Beasley. CONCACAF will decide later this week whether or not Klinsmann will be allowed to coach the USMNT in the final.

Notes:

- The three substitutes were Chris Wondolowski, Mix Diskerud and Brek Shea. All of them looked decent but none did anything special. Shea was probably the most effective of the three.

- Klinsmann's sending off was absolutely ridiculous and I'll be stunned if he's suspended for the final. The ref was a joke, going both ways. Terrible calls throughout the game.

- I am really happy that Stu Holden's knee didn't blow up on that terrible pitch.

- Kyle Beckerman had another awesome game. I've been just as annoyed as anyone else about his appearances in first team games and games that are supposed to be for developing players, but he's had a great tournament and his best two games have been the last two.

- Landon Donovan was spectacular again. He's found his former level. He looks like he did 10 years ago. It's nuts.

- Alejandro Bedoya had a really up and down game. He had two assists, and both were nice, but he had a lot of giveaways too. His decision making wasn't great. I don't know what to make of him. I definitely would rather see Joe Corona in the final.

- As nice as that first half was, Honduras were truly awful. They didn't offer any kind of resistance. They were worse than El Salvador. It was absolutely shocking.

- The Clarence Goodson/Matt Besler center back partnership looks good. Omar Gonzalez might need a dominant finish to the MLS season to play his way back into the starting lineup.

- I want Mexico to win the late game. I want revenge, vengeance, etc.

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