Hexagonal Can Be Minefield for Team USA

Hexagonal Can Be Minefield for Team USA

As the sun began dipping below the Sierra del Merendon on Tuesday, casting wide shadows across the fertile Sula Valley, a youth soccer game unfolded on a field in the city’s southeast outskirts.

A warm breeze rippled the nets, elevated by rusty posts. One team wore the green of Marathon, a local club, the other Real Madrid’s rich blue. Parents watched from beneath a line of trees. A stray dog frolicked.

The tranquil scene belied the blue storm that will descend the next afternoon on a cement structure a few hundred feet away. Beyond a fence topped by barbed wire and patrolled by a security guard with a shotgun balanced on his shoulder, Estadio Olimpico Metropolitano stands in wait.

Here the U.S. men’s national soccer team will continue its quest for a berth in the 2014 World Cup — a meeting with Honduras in the first of 10 final-round qualifiers.

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