Honduras have booked their place at this summer’s Men’s Olympic Football Tournament with a 3-2 extra-time win over El Salvador in the semi-finals of qualifying in the North, Central and Caribbean region.
The Hondurans were made to work for their London ticket, though, as El Salvador twice came from behind in hard-fought contest. Gerson Rodas proved the hero with a brace in overtime to ensure Honduras their third appearance at the Olympic Games since 2000.
La Bicolor opened the match in convincing fashion, with Antony Lozano opening the scoring before one minute was gone. El Salvador were on the back foot, but Milton Molina finally came to their rescue with an equaliser in the 77th minute to force extra time.
Rodas then found his stride with a goal midway through the first period of extra time. However, the Hondurans were again made to sweat as Edwin Sanchez brought the Salvadorans level for a second time. And just when the game seemed bound for penalties, Rodas headed home the decisive blow to send Honduras through to London 2012.
With the victory, Los Catrachos are now set to contest a final match on Monday against fellow-London qualifiers Mexico, who defeated Canada in the other semi-final match of the CONCACAF U-23 Men’s Championship.