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Federation Internationale de Football Association needs to spend on goal-line technology that could have saved USA

12 October 2017

Round 5 - Honduras 0 Panama 1, Panama 0 Mexico 0, Trinidad & Tobago 1 Panama 0, Panama 1 United States of America 1, Costa Rica 0 Panama 0, Panama 2 Honduras 2, Mexico 1 Panama 0, Panama 3 Trinidad & Tobago 0, US 4 Panama 0, Panama 2 Costa Rica 1.

With the likes of Christian Pulisic, Clint Dempsey and Tim Howard - who let in a real howler - in their ranks, it has to be considered majorly underwhelming for the USA side.

In need of a win in order to finish above Honduras (who had just beaten Mexico) on goal difference, Panama suffered an early setback when Johan Venegas sent the already qualified Costa Rica 1-0 up on 36 minutes.

But it worked. Putting the ball into orbit via row Z helped Panama secure a 2-1 win thanks to goals from Johan Venegas and Gabriel Torres to earn a place at Russian Federation 2018. But, there is no goal-line technology in the North American qualifiers and the referees made a very, very bad judgment call.

Despite the USA's failings and the goal that never was, there was another unsung hero that the population of Panama must thank.

The rebounded ball then bounced off the shoulder of Panama striker Blas Perez, who was on the ground, and came to rest on the goal line but as he tried to force the goal, Costa Rica defender Ronald Matarrita, seated within the goal, kicked the ball off of Perez and out of play on the other side of the post. However, when the Costa Rica player went to collect the ball, a Panama substitute put the burners on and beat him to it, smashing the ball away in the process. As Costa Rica pour forward you sense your chance.

Next summer, however, there won't be an American side in Russian Federation.

Congratulations, Panama, we will soak in some of your happiness.

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Federation Internationale de Football Association needs to spend on goal-line technology that could have saved USA