Sydney FC striker Yairo Yau will miss Saturday night’s clash with the Newcastle Jets as he traverses the planet to help push Panama towards its first ever World Cup appearance.
Sydney FC striker Yairo Yau will miss Saturday night-s clash with the Newcastle Jets as he traverses the planet to help push Panama towards its first ever World Cup appearance.
Panama opens its final round of CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying by hosting Costa Rica in Panama City on 6 February and the likeable Yau departed Sydney yesterday to take up his place in the National Squad.
The clash is the first of 10 matches (home and away) against USA, Mexico, Jamaica, Honduras and Costa Rica with the top three teams earning automatic qualification into the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. The team finishing 4th will be pitched into a one-off playoff for the right to play in Brazil.
Yau has already made eight appearances for the Panama National Team since making his debut against Trinidad & Tobago in 2010 and is eagerly looking forward to the matches ahead.
“To play for my National Team is a great honour for me,” Yau said. “We have never played in the World Cup and it would be very important for the game, and the people, in Panama if we could qualify for the World Cup in Brazil.
“We have been successful so far to get to this final stage and we will give everything to our team.”
Panama-s path to the final stage of World Cup qualification saw them enter the competition at the second stage, where they defeated Dominica and Nicaragua before progressing through stage three alongside Honduras, leaving Canada and Cuba in their wake.
But the next step is against Costa Rica, ranked 66th in the world, 20 places below the Panamanians. In fact, going off FIFA-s current world rankings, Panama stands a good chance of qualifying for the World Cup with only Mexico (15th) and the USA (28th) ranked ahead of them and Jamaica (58th), Honduras (59th) and Coast Rica behind them.
Following the clash with Costa Rica on 6 February, Yau will be involved in a mad dash to get back to Sydney in time to line up against Brisbane Roar at Allianz Stadium on Sunday 10 February.
Sydney FC are now offering BLOCKBUSTER 4-Packs for the final four home games of the regular season. The massive games include clashes with the reigning A-League Champions Brisbane Roar, the current top two in the standings Central Coast Mariners and Adelaide United, plus another Big Blue and the fierce rivalry against Melbourne Victory, all at Allianz Stadium. Prices start from just $90 to see all four games as Sydney reach the exciting run-in to the A-League Finals Series.