The Honduran national team suffered their fifth loss in a row at the FIFA World Cup dating back to 1982. The Catrachos fell 3-0 to France at the Beira-Rio Stadium in Porto Alegre, Brazil in their world cup opener. Honduras won the third ticket to represent CONCACAF at the Brazil 2014 tournament and also has Ecuador and Switzerland in their group.
This is Honduras’ third participation at the FIFA World Cup. They participated in the 1982 games where they drew against Spain and Yugoslavia before falling to North Ireland. In South Africa 2010, the Catrachos lost to Chile and Spain before drawing against Switzerland. Since their draw with Yugoslavia, Honduras has not scored a goal at the world cup.
Honduras came out with an attacking game in the first minutes. However, they fell back and gave up possession to the French who quickly began to move forward. Noel Valladres had his first intervention in the 14th minute on a set piece when the ball landed in front of Paul Pogba who was unmarked in the area. He fired and Valladres tapped it out to corner saving the Catrachos.
Les Bleus took over the pitch after the 15th minute of play. Antoine Griezmann had a great opportunity to open scoring in the 22nd minute with a header that hit the crossbar. The Honduran defense began to leave spaces, and the French took advantage of the situation.
Things went for the worse for Honduras when Wilson Palacios received his second booking for taking Pogba down in the area. The referee pointed at the spot and pulled the red card on Palacios. Karim Benzema converted shooting the ball to Valladres’ right to give France the 1-0 lead. Honduras would go into the break down a man and a goal.
The second half began with the French applying more pressure. Benzema ran in and shot beating Valladares. But his shot hit the post and bounced off the keeper past the goal line. It was credited as an own-goal against Valladres. Les Bleus took a 2-0 lead.
The French continued their dominance over the Catrachos. In the 72nd Benzema appeared once more. On a set-piece he received the ball and fired past Valladres for the 3-0. The Honduran defense was too spread out leaving the Real Madrid striker with enough room to fire and increase the French lead.
Les Bleus maintained control of the ball for the remainder of the game to claim victory. The French take over Group E. Honduras will face Ecuador in their next game, Les Bleus will take on Switzerland.