Mexico has control of its fate and could qualify for next year’s World Cup with a victory on Friday at home against Panama.
Qualifying with three matches still to play would let Mexico relax with Costa Rica and the United States — and even Panama and Honduras — battling for the two remaining automatic berths. A fourth team from the CONCACAF region can also advance in a playoff with the No. 5 team out of Asia.
Only Trinidad and Tobago, which is last in the six-team standings for North and Central America and the Caribbean, seems out of the picture.
Through six of 10 matches, Mexico has 14 points followed by Costa Rica (11), United States (8), Panama (7), Honduras (5), and Trinidad and Tobago (3).