It’s not every day that the leader of a Central American political coup invites a U.S. soccer player to his (recently acquired) country for a little celebration. But the U.S. National team’s Jonathan Bornstein received that honor on Thursday, after his equalizing goal in stoppage time against Costa Rica propelled Honduras into the final automatic World Cup qualifying berth.
It will be Honduras’ first trip to the World Cup in 27 years, and that nation is understandably going nuts, even by Central American soccer standards. Bornstein is now a national hero there; just take a listen to radio call of his goal, YouTubed following the jump. “Goal! Goal! Goal! GOAAAL! Que Noche Senores!”
After declaring today a national holiday in celebration of Honduras qualifying for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, Roberto Micheletti said Bornstein would not even need a visa to visit.
“We’ll bring this gringuito who scored on the header,” Micheletti told reporters in Tegucigalpa, the capital. “He doesn’t need a visa to come here to Honduras. We’ll thank him.”
Micheletti said he would take Bornstein on a free trip to the Islas de la Bahia (Bay Islands) in recognition of his goal, which not only earned the U.S. a 2-2 tie at RFK Stadium in Washington but also secured Honduras its first World Cup place in 27 years, at the expense of Costa Rica, which was only seconds away from qualifying.
Fielding Mellish: “When is the revolution?”
Esposito: “Six months.”
Fielding Mellish: “Six months? I have a rented car!”
Micheletti is the the de facto President of Honduras, after a June military coup overthrew former president Manuel Zelaya for violating the Honduran constitution.