Mevlut Erdinc, Caner Erkin score as Turkey blanks Honduras
WASHINGTON (AP) - Mevlut Erdinc and Caner Erkin scored in the second half to help Turkey beat World Cup-bound Honduras 2-0 on Wednesday night at RFK Stadium.
Erdinc opened up the scoring in the 70th minute, one-timing a shot right in front of goalkeeper Noel Valladares after Ishak Dogan dribbled around Bryan Beckeles.
In the 83rd minute, Erdinc was again involved, this time providing the perfectly weighted ball to Erkin down the left hand side. Erkin fired a shot into the back of the net.
''They brought it a different level I think,'' Honduran midfielder Roger Espinoza said about Turkey's second half performance. ''We made some mistakes and it happens and you learn from that and better to happen now then later''.
Honduras travels to Houston to face Israel on Sunday before playing England in Miami on June 7. Turkey, which failed to qualify for the World Cup, will travel to New Jersey to face the United States on Sunday at RedBull Arena.
Honduras will open the World Cup against France on June 15 in Porto Alegre.
Honduras' best scoring opportunities came late in the first half as it dominated possession inside the Turkey half.
Espinoza took a long ball from the other side of midfield and fired a shot across his body that just went wide of the left post in the 39th minute. In the 42nd minute, Jerry Bengtson collected a long ball before striking a half-volley that found its way into the side netting.
''I think it was a tale of two halves,'' Honduran manager Luis Suarez said. ''I liked the first half for my team. I thought that tactically we were very sound. But we weren't able to convert the opportunities that we had. And obviously in the second half we lost control of the ball. But overall, I leave with a good feeling about the game.''
Honduras failed to register a shot on goal in the first half and managed just one for the entire match, while Turkey forced Honduran goalkeeper Noel Valladares to make four saves on the night.
Honduras' Wilson Palacios went down in the 22nd minute with an apparent leg injury forcing the referee to stop the game. After some medical attention the Stoke City midfielder was able to continue for the rest of the match. Houston Dynamo playmaker Boniek Garcia is still nursing an injury and wasn't in uniform for Honduras.
Forward Carlo Costly who has scored 30 goals in 68 appearances for Honduras was also held out by Suarez.
''We decided to hold him out today for precautionary reasons,'' Suarez said about Costly. ''But for the next two games we feel that he's going to have some minutes for us.''