In a hostile environment, against a hostile team, the United States men’s national team was able to eek out a point against host Panama Tuesday night, earning a 1-1 draw.
The Panamanians were physical from the get-go, feeding off of their crowd’s frenetic energy. They were called for 19 fouls (compared to the USMNT’s seven), but weren’t issued any yellow cards.
“Three minutes into the game, you realize you’re playing 12 against 11,” U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard said.
Howard finished the match with three saves on four shots. Clint Dempsey scored for the Americans in the 39th minute, with Panama’s Gabriel Gomez answering four minutes later.
With five points in four matches, the USMNT sits in fourth place in the CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying table, trailing Panama by one for the final automatic qualifying spot. The Americans will return to action on June 8 against Trinidad and Tobago, likely at Dicks Sporting Goods Park in Commerce City, Colo.