Canada earns 8th straight victory, undefeated in WCQ

Canada is on the verge of reaching its first FIFA World Cup since 1986 after winning for the first time in El Salvador since 2009 and for the sixth straight game in CONCACAF qualifying.

Atiba Hutchinson’s 66th-minute goal and Jonathan David’s ninth of the campaign three minutes into stoppage time on Wednesday night keep the Canadiens’ unbeaten record intact after 11 rounds and four points clear at the top of the standings of the group.

Canada leads North and Central America and the Caribbean with 25 points, followed by the United States (21), Mexico (21), Panama (17), Costa Rica (16), El Salvador (9), Jamaica (7) and Honduras (3).

The top three nations qualify for this year’s tournament in Qatar, with fourth place qualifying for a playoff against Oceania champions, likely New Zealand.

In Minnesota, the United States beat Honduras 3-0 in freezing conditions thanks to first-half goals from Weston McKennie and Walker Zimmerman, and second-half substitute Christian Pulisic.

“From the first whistle I knew we had good control,” said USA coach Gregg Berhalter.

Eliminated at home on Sunday, the visitors did not force American goalkeeper Matt Turner to make a single save under negative conditions.

“Football shouldn’t be endured this way. All my players are getting treatment, some players are getting an IV,” said Honduras coach Hernan Dario Gomez.

In Mexico, Raul Jimenez converted an 80th-minute penalty for the hosts in a 1-0 win over Panama, while Costa Rica won 1-0 away to Jamaica with the 22nd international in Joel Campbell in the 62nd minute.

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