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LAFC’s Andre Horta, Portugal fail to qualify for U-21 Euros

Meanwhile, Luis Lopez starts in friendly win for Honduras.

Portugal v Guinea - Toulon Tournament Photo by Harry Trump/Getty Images

With the international break ending, Los Angeles Football Club’s non-Americans on international duty have completed their stints with their national team, and it was a mixed bag.

Most notably, Andre Horta played in two games for Portugal’s U-21s, the playoff against Poland for one of the final 2019 U-21 Euros spots, but fell short, losing 3-2 on aggregate in the home-and-away series.

Things started off well last week in Portugal’s away leg, as they won 1-0 behind Diogo Jota’s goal. Horta started and played 86 minutes in the win.

But in the return leg in Chaves, Portugal on Tuesday, Poland won 3-1. Jota scored again, but Poland put up a 3-0 lead to surge ahead in the series, and Portugal couldn’t get any more goals to go back ahead. In this game, Horta played 77 minutes.

The result is that Portugal’s U-21s won’t be at the Euros next year. While it’s “just” a youth tournament, it’s probably one of the most prestigious in the world, along with the South American U-20 Championship, and missing out has to be a disappointment. On the other hand, it will give Horta more time with LAFC, something he could take advantage of next year.

In other action, LAFC goalkeeper Luis Lopez started and played the full 90 in Honduras’ 1-0 home win over Panama in a friendly on Friday. Lopez was one of several MLSers on both sides to play in the match, and he seems to have regained his spot as Honduras’ No. 1. What about his club situation? We’ll see, but it was a fruitful stint on the international stage for Buba.

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