With a berth in the 2014 World Cup within reach, Eddie Johnson rose to the occasion for the United States.
The U.S. striker climbed above the Mexico defense to head home a corner kick from Landon Donovan in the 49th minute of a taut World Cup qualifier at Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. The outswinging corner came off Donovan's right foot and Johnson met it just outside the six-yard box, shrugging off a challenge from defender Diego Reyes. The 29-year-old attacker who was left off the United States' 2010 World Cup roster put his team on the precipice of qualification by nodding the ball past the Mexico goalkeeper.
Donovan then pushed the U.S. men's national team even closer to a spot in the 2014 World Cup with a second score for the home team. In the 78th minute, Donovan poked home a splendid cross from Mix Diskerud.
WATCH: Donovan Scores 2nd U.S. Goal
With the familiar 2-0 scoreline in lights in Columbus (thanks to a late penalty spot miss from Clint Dempsey) when the final whistle sounded, all eyes turned to a match between Honduras and Panama. After securing their own win, Jurgen Klinsmann's U.S. squad needed a either a win or tie for Honduras against Panama to lock up their place in Brazil out of CONCACAF. Honduras twice took one-goal leads and twice Panama pulled even en route to a 2-2 scoreline. That draw was enough to push the U.S. atop its qualifying group and lock up a spot in Brazil.
— U.S. Soccer (@ussoccer) September 11, 2013