In an unprecedented victory against Costa Rica in the last game of the world cup qualification, Panama scores the wining victory to advance them for the first time in history to play with the top 32 soccer teams in the world in Russia 2018 after 10 successive failed attempts since 1978.
The United States fatal loss to Trinidad and Tobago lead the way for Panama to advance to third place in their bracket along with Mexico, and Costa Rica to qualify for the trip to Russia in 2018. The irony of this is a payback from 2013 when the United States team flatten the chance for Panama to go to the World Cup with a series of last minute goals after preliminary celebration that distracted Panama and stunned the country with its loyal fans. In a final game that team USA didn’t have to win, crushed Panamas dream for the first World Cup experience, leaving fans heartbroken and distraught.
This year’s amazing victory lead by Roman Torres with his last minute goal that had fans screaming for joy ending with a large celebration in the streets of Panama with thousands of cars honking their horns until the early morning. President Varela filled with joy declared a national holiday the next day and rendered the city a virtual ghost town.
Of course there is always controversy with a big win and especially with the first phantom goal in the game being cause for concern which later showed not to have crossed the goal line. Unfortunately there is no instant replay in soccer and the ruling on the field stood. Talks of investigation are being said after many controversial games with similar rulings are now opening the door for instant replay in the FIFA soccer world and possibly to be implemented in the 2018 World Cup.
The amazing win and goal heard around the world will definitely spotlight Panama in Russia to over 3.2 billion viewers in the 2018 FIFA World Cup and surely boost the local economy, tourism, and international trade business.