HONDURAS 1-2 ECUADOR
FRIDAY 20TH JUNE – CURITIBA
Ecuador came back from a goal down to defeat Honduras 2-1, with two goals from in-form striker Enner Valencia that moved them to second place in Group E.
Just after the half hour mark, big burly Honduran striker Carlo Costly latched onto a long ball forward from Victor Bernardez and powerfully fired in a low 20-yard shot to put the Central Americans ahead. This was Honduras’ first World Cup goal in over 400 minutes of football since 1982.
Ecuador quickly equalised when Juan Paredes’ deflected shot fell for 24-year-old Enner Valencia to toe poke home from close range
Honduras, renowned for their aggressive style, showed they had more in their locker as Bernardez had a long-range free-kick palmed away by keeper Alexander Dominguez. They then thought they had restored their lead but, when striker Jerry Bengtson bundled home after a Costly header cannoned off the crossbar, the referee disallowed the goal for handball.
However, it was Enner Valencia again that grabbed the all important winner, nodding in at the far post following Walter Ayovi’s free-kick to settle the game netting his seventh goal in six international games. He is currently joint top scorer of the tournament with all the stars, Thomas Muller, Arjen Robben, Robin van Persie and Karim Benzema on three goals each.
Honduras pressed for the equaliser but it eluded them and they have now lost both of their first two group games. They have yet to win in eight World Cup matches and even if they beat the Swiss in their final group game, they are not certain to reach the next round because of their poor goal difference.
Ecuador face France in their final group game and if Switzerland win or draw against Honduras, they need to match that result to progress.
HONDURAS: Valladares, Figueroa, Bernardez, Izaguirre (J. Garcia 46), Beckeles, B. Garcia (Chavez 82), Espinoza, Garrido (Martinez 71), Claros, Bengtson, Costly.
GOALS: Costly 31.
BOOKINGS: Bernardez 7, Bengtson 45.
ECUADOR: Dominguez, Guagua, Erazo, Paredes, Ayovi, Noboa, Minda (Gruezo 83), A. Valencia, Montero (Achillier 90), Caicedo (Mendez 82), E. Valencia.
GOALS: E. Valencia 34 & 65.
BOOKINGS: A. Valencia 57, E. Valencia 72, Montero 80.
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