International Notebook | Darlington Nagbe, David Guzmán help respective national teams earn important points in World Cup qualifiers

Darlington Nagbe, USMNT, 3.28.17

Darlington Nagbe and the U.S. Men's National Team earned a crucial point Tuesday evening as they drew 1-1 against Panama in a 2018 FIFA World Cup Qualifier in Panama City.

All the scoring happened in the first half as Clint Dempsey put the U.S. ahead in the 39th with Panama's Gabriel Gómez equalizing four minutes later.

Nagbe received his second straight start with the national team and played 69 minutes in the match. Positioned on the left side of the midfield, Nagbe again provided important possession and dribbles forward. He was credited with six recoveries on the night.

The draw keeps the U.S. in fourth place on four points in the CONCACAF hexagonal rankings and still in the mix to advance to next year's World Cup. The three top teams in the hex secure automatic berths to Russia 2018 with the fourth-place team taking on Asia's fifth-place team in a playoff for a final spot. The U.S. will pick up qualifying in June when they play Trinidad & Tobago and Mexico.

In San Pedro de Sula, David Guzmán came in at halftime to help Costa Rica comeback for a 1-1 World Cup qualifier draw with Honduras.

It was Guzmán's second straight appearance for the Ticos and they hold onto second place in the hex with seven points. Costa Rica will play Panama and Trinidad & Tobago in June.