The 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers are officially in full swing. Every country across the world is fighting for their spot on the world stage, in perhaps the most prestigious tournament in all of sports. From Africa, to the Americas, Asia, and Europe, countries put their passion behind their national football/soccer team for the World Cup push. The day started off in Europe, where Adam Buksa of the New England Revolution‘s Poland hosted Albania.
Buksa got the call to start next to Robert Lewandowski, potentially the best striker in the world at the moment. Lewandowski scored the game’s first goal in minute 12, though Albania equalized shortly after. Right before the halftime break, Adam Buksa got his chance. Former MLS league m-mate Przemyslaw Frankowski whipped in the cross straight onto Buksa’s head inside the box. His snap header on the cross from the ex Chicago Fire star was a perfect one. Adam Buksa watched as the ball struck the right post, and actually went in this time. The Warsaw crowd chanted his name proudly for his first international goal. He is known for his misses off the post for the Revs, so it was good to see the post work out for him in a big match. Poland went on to rout Albania 4-1.
Tajon Buchanan didn’t have the same luck as Buksa later in the night at BMO Field in Toronto. He got the nod to start at right wing, but Honduras seemed ready for his dynamic self. He was for the most part locked down, despite some good moments where he was able to use his pace to get free. Late in the first half, Buchanan tried marking DC United fullback Andy Najar, but quickly lost him. Najar got in behind and shielded the ball perfectly, Tajon conceded a penalty kick as he went through his side. Honduras would score, and Buchanan soon after picked up an ankle knock that saw him substituted out at the half. Cyle Larin’s second half penalty salvaged a 1-1 draw for Canada against Honduras.
The final international Revolution performance of the night was for the rising star in net, Matt Turner. Turner wasn’t asked to do much in the stalemate match against El Salvador, but the game started opening up late. Turner was forced to make a diving save to his left on a solid headed chance about two-thirds through the match. The United States had some late opportunities, but couldn’t make the most of them. Their headers were constantly going wide, the finishing touch was not present. It ended in a 0-0 draw in San Salvador.
All three of the Revs players on international duty will have two more games with their countries this week. USA will host Canada in Nashville on Sunday night, where Buchanan and Turner will play against each other for the second time. CONCACAF goals were hard to come by, as six teams drew. Mexico picked up a late victory against Jamaica, standing as the lone three points captured. Meanwhile, Buksa has a 2:45 PM EST matchup in San Marino as Poland continues their qualification push. The Revolution, on the other hand, will visit the Philadelphia Union on Friday night, with both teams extremely shorthanded.
(Photo by Rafal Rusek/PressFocus/MB Media/Getty Images)