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Tonight's Dynamo game is where Paul Caligiuri's goal sent the United States to its first World Cup in 40 years

20 August 4:13 pm

Tonight's Dynamo game is where Paul Caligiuri's goal sent the United States to its first World Cup in 40 years

By Matt Pedersen

Tonight the Dynamo open their CONCACAF Champions League group stage at Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. It is the national stadium for Trinidad and Tobago and the sight of one of the most famous goals in American soccer history. In 1989, the United States national team was engulfed in the CONCACAF Championship, which was the final round of qualifying for the 1990 World Cup and the predecessor to today's "Hexagonal round" that the United States is currently leading ahead of next year's World Cup.

Back then, only 24 countries made the World Cup, so CONCACAF was allotted only two slots. The U.S. visited Hasely Crawford Stadium in November for what amounted to a play-in game for the 1990 World Cup. In front of 35,000 fans partial to the Soca Warriors, American midfielder/defender Paul Caligiuri scored the game's only goal for a 1-0 U.S. win. Caligiuri appeared in 110 games for the United States and scored five goals. The goal below secured the U.S.' first place in a World Cup since 1950. Since this goal, the United States has not missed a World Cup, appearing in the last six. 

 

For more on the goal, take a look at this ESPN article from 2010, which called it, "The goal that changed U.S. soccer."