FRISCO – After Costa Rica punched its ticket to the knockout stages of the 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup, FC Dallas’ Maynor Figueroa led his home country onto the field at Toyota Stadium.
Figueroa captained the squad for 90 minutes as the Hondurans came away with a 0-0 draw They now sit third in Group A with four points. It is not the first time that Figueroa has started a match for Honduras in Toyota Stadium, but the first time he has done so as a member of FC Dallas.
The last time he took the pitch at Toyota Stadium with Honduras was in the 2015 Gold Cup against the United States in a 2-1 loss. Friday night was extra special for the most capped Honduran in history.
“I felt good and comfortable to be able to play at home with my national team,” Figueroa said. "It was honestly a wonderful experience. It would have been nice to win but we also did not lose so it was good. It was great to see the fans and hopefully in the future we are able to have another chance to play here."
Figueroa anchored the Honduran backline in front of 10,098 in attendance. The crowd was mostly a Honduran contingency, and Figueroa heard his share of cheers when he was introduced.
But the Canadians showed life in the first half with a handful of chances. Figueroa handled a good Canadian cross that he thumped far away with a header. The second half saw Figueroa have more work to do as the Canadians began to pump in crosses.
16-year-old breakout star Alphonso Davies entered the game in the second half for Canada and opened up the match for the Canadians. But Figueroa and his backline were up to the task, while the offense created limited chances.
The result does not necessarily mean Honduras are out of the Gold Cup. The two best third place teams advance to the knockout stages. Honduras will have to await their fate.
“It is confirmed and we are happy,” Figueroa said. "I believe there are still a lot of things we need to work on and hope to come in better conditions in the upcoming matches."