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July 24, 2013
Another dominating performance as Donovan, USA advance to Gold Cup Final

By John Tranchina
Special to New England Soccer News

Landon Donovan continued his romp through the CONCACAF Gold Cup with two goals and an assist in Wednesday’s 3-1 semifinal win over Honduras.
Landon Donovan continued his romp through the CONCACAF Gold Cup with two goals and an assist in Wednesday’s 3-1 semifinal win over Honduras.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
ARLINGTON, Texas – Landon Donovan scored two goals and added an assist to help lead the United States Men’s National Team to a 3-1 victory over Honduras in a Gold Cup semi-final matchup Wednesday night at Cowboys Stadium.

Eddie Johnson also scored for the US, while Alejandro Bedoya contributed two assists as the Americans advance to the Gold Cup Final for the fifth straight time. They will face the winner of the second semi-final later tonight between Mexico and Panama in the championship game on Sunday at Soldier Field in Chicago.

Donovan now has five goals in the tournament, moving him into a tie with teammate Chris Wondolowski, who substituted in for Donovan in the 72nd minute, and Panama’s Manuel Gabriel Torres, for the Gold Cup scoring lead.

Nery Medina scored the lone goal for Honduras, which is now 4-14-3 all-time against the United States.

The US, which lost to Mexico in the Final in each of the last two Gold Cups, but won the two previous tournaments, has now won its last three games by a combined margin of 12-3.

Fresh off a 5-1 thrashing of El Salvador in Baltimore on Sunday, the Americans took the early lead on Johnson’s second goal of the tournament just 11 minutes in, set up by a nice short pass from Donovan. Johnson cut between two Honduran defenders, raced ahead and drilled a 15-yard right-footed shot that beat goalkeeper Donis Escober into the upper right corner.

Donovan then made it 2-0 in the 27th minute. Bedoya relayed Johnson’s long lead ball and Donovan managed to knock the it down with his chest and then lunged forward with his right foot to slot it just past the diving Escober and inside the right post.

Honduras, who defeated Costa Rica 1-0 last Saturday in the quarterfinals in Atlanta, cut the US lead to 2-1 in the 52nd minute when Medina became the ninth straight different goal-scorer for Honduras.

Off a free kick from about two yards beyond the right side of the penalty area, taken by former FC Dallas midfielder Marvin Chavez, Medina leapt up for a 15-yard header that beat goalkeeper Nick Rimando to the upper right corner.

The Americans answered less than a minute later, though, when Donovan notched his second goal of the night and the 18th Gold Cup goal of his career, the most ever. Bedoya chased down a long lead ball from Clarence Goodson in the penalty area, then chipped a knee-high pass over to Donovan in the middle for the tap-in.

One of the biggest cheers of the night came in the 67th minute when former FC Dallas forward Brek Shea entered the match.

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