What a night!
The San Jose Earthquakes’ beautiful Avaya Stadium hosted yet another major milestone event, housing the U.S. Men’s National Team in a crucial World Cup qualifier against Honduras. The third-year venue provided the red, white and blue with a significant home field advantage and terrific atmosphere, leading to a much needed 6-0 victory.
The six-goal margin was the team’s biggest ever in a Final Round qualifying game. Three goals by Clint Dempsey and one apiece from Michael Bradley, Christian Pulisic and Sebastian Lletget gave the Americans a lopsided victory and momentum heading into next Tuesday’s clash with Quakes midfielder Anibal Godoy and Panama.
The Earthquakes were represented on the field as well on Friday night. Forward Chris Wondolowski and goalkeeper David Bingham suited up for the home side, although neither featured in the match.
The Bay Area has been the focus of the sports universe since the start of 2016. It has hosted the Super Bowl, the NBA Finals, the NHL Final, the 2016 MLS All-Star Game, Copa America Centenario and the International Champions Cup, with the CONCACAF Gold Cup Final coming soon. The FIFA World Cup qualifier on Friday night adds to the millions of eyes looking at the Bay Area with envy right now.
Head coach Bruce Arena said in his press conference on Thursday that he hoped Avaya Stadium would feel like home, unlike some other matches in the past on American soil that had been overrun with support for their opponent. It’s a good bet that he, and the rest of U.S. Soccer, will be looking at San Jose again after Friday’s showing.