Commentators Celebrate as USMNT's Graham Zusi Preserves Mexico's World Cup Hopes

Joseph ZuckerFeatured ColumnistOctober 16, 2013

At a moment when one team's World Cup hopes were dashed while another's were salvaged, you could expect some calm commentary from the match announcers, right? Or they could just lose their minds.

That was the reaction from the Mexican announcers after Graham Zusi's equalizer for the United States against Panama in the 92nd minute. Aron Johannsson would add another in the 93rd minute to give the US a 3-2 win.

That result meant Mexico would finish fourth in the CONCACAF World Cup qualification group. El Tri now must emerge victorious from a two-legged playoff against New Zealand for a spot in Brazil.

That highlight is probably going to be the only time you'll ever hear those announcers utter the words "We love you! We love you forever and ever!" toward the USMNT, followed up by "God bless America!"

When you qualify for the World Cup, you're entitled to celebrate however you want.

Tuesday night was one of the wildest CONCACAF has ever seen. There were so many moving parts at play in the three matches across the region. Honduras needed a win or draw to secure third place, while Mexico needed a win or a draw to finish fourth. If they lost, that opened the door for Panama to sneak in through the back door.

Once Luis Tejada scored in the 83rd minute to take a 2-1 lead against the United States, Panama were in fourth place, and it looked like El Tri would be missing out on the World Cup. Then came the Zusi goal and the ensuing pandemonium in Mexico.