Tim Howard has backstopped several of the U.S. wins over Central American teams in World Cup qualifying. (Andy Mead/YCJ Photo)

By Michael Lewis

Front Row Soccer Editor

Since hosting Costa Rica for the first time in 1985, the United States rarely has left points on the table in home World Cup qualifiers against Central American opponents.

The Americans have forged an impressive 21-2-3 mark in 26 matches. Their lone defeats came in 1985 (Costa Rica) and 2001 (Honduras).

They also have earned 66 out of a possible 78 points, accruing 85 percent of the points.

Some other interesting tidbits, entering Friday’s qualifier vs. Honduras in Avaya Stadium in San Jose, Calif.:

* The U.S. boasts a 14-game unbeaten streak (13-0-1) against Central American sides since suffering a 3-2 loss to Honduras at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. Sept. 1 2001.

* The U.S. hasn’t given up a goal in four consecutive games or since a 3-1 victory over Guatemala in Kansas City, Mo. Oct. 16, 2012.

* After that 2001 setback to the Hondurans, the Americans reeled off six consecutive shutouts, including all five matches during the 2006 qualifying cycle.

Here’s the full list of games:

1986

May 31, 1985 — Costa Rica 1, U.S. 0 — Torrance, Calif.

1990

April 30, 1989 — U.S. 1, Costa Rica — St. Louis

June 17, 1989 — U.S. 2, Guatemala — New Britain, Conn.

Nov. 5, 1989 — U.S. 0, El Salvador 0 — St. Louis

1998

Nov. 3, 1996 — U.S. 2, Guatemala 0 — Washington, D.C.

Dec. 14, 1996 — U.S. 3, Costa Rica 1 — Palo Alto, Calif.

Aug. 7, 1997 — U.S. 1, Costa Rica 0 — Portland, Ore.

Nov. 16, 1997 — U.S. 4, El Salvador 2 — Foxborough, Mass.

2002

Sept. 3, 2000 — U.S. 1, Guatemala 0 — Washington, D.C.

Oct. 11, 2000 — U.S. 0, Costa Rica 0 — Columbus, Ohio

April 25, 2001 — U.S. 1, Costa Rica 0 — Kansas City, Mo.

Sept. 1, 2001 — Honduras 3, U.S. 2 — Washington, D.C.

2006

Sept. 4, 2004 — U.S. 2, El Salvador 0 — Foxborough, Mass.

Oct. 13, 2004 — U.S. 6, Panama 0 — Washington, D.C.

March 30, 2005 — U.S. 2, Guatemala 0 — Birmingham, Ala.

June 4, 2005 — U.S. 3, Costa Rica 0 — Salt Lake City, Utah

Oct. 12, 2005 — U.S. 2, Panama 0 — Foxborough, Mass.

2010

Nov. 19, 2008 — U.S. 2, Guatemala 0 — Commerce City, Colo.

June 6, 2009 — U.S. 2, Honduras 1 — Chicago

Sept. 5, 2009 — U.S. 2, El Salvador 1 — Sandy, Utah

Oct. 14, 2009 — U.S. 2, Costa Rica 2 — Washington, D.C.

2014

Oct. 16, 2012 — U.S. 3, Guatemala 1 — Kansas City, Kansas

March 22, 2013 — U.S. 1, Costa Rica 0 — Commerce City, Colo.

June 11, 2013 — U.S. 2, Panama 0 — Seattle

June 18, 2013 — U.S. 1, Honduras 0 — Sandy, Utah

2018

March 29, 2016 — U.S. 4, Guatemala 0 — Columbus, Ohio