Arlington, Texas • By even the very high standards of coach Jurgen Klinsmann, Landon Donovan is regaining top form after taking a break from the national team.
Donovan scored two goals and set up another on Wednesday night, helping the United States beat Honduras 3-1 to advance to the CONCACAF Gold Cup final.
Klinsmann said the performance was "wonderful to watch."
"I have told him in our conversations that 'I measure you. Your benchmark is the best Landon Donovan ever,' " Klinsmann said. "I'm not taking anything less than that. And he is trying to catch up with that. Give him more games. Give him time."
While Klinsmann has declined to confirm that Donovan will be rejoining the World Cup qualifying team later this year, the top goal scorer in U.S. history is leaving little doubt that he belongs. Donovan has five goals in the tournament, tying him with teammate Chris Wondolowski for most in the Gold Cup. Donovan has set up seven goals, including four in the last two games.
Entering the game, he was the only U.S. player to play every minute of the tournament. He finally was subbed out in the 72nd minute, having earned a rest.
"It's the most relaxed I've felt," Donovan said. "I feel good, and I'm really enjoying it."
The Americans will play the winner of the Panama-Mexico match on Sunday. The U.S. has won a team-record 10 straight games.
The U.S. struck first when Donovan found Eddie Johnson running through the middle of the Honduran defense.
U.S. 3, Honduras 1
Honduras 0 1 1
United States 2 1 3
First half Â» 1, United States, Eddie Johnson 2 (Donovan), 11th minute. 2, United States, Donovan 4 (Bedoya), 27th minute.
Second half Â» 13, Honduras, Medina 1 (Chavez) 52nd minute. 4, United States, Donovan 5 (Bedoya), 53rd minute.
Yellow Cards • Johnson, US, 90th+2.
Red Cards • None.
Honduras • Donis Escobar; Brayan Beckeles, Osman Chavez, Nery Medina, Juan Carlos Garcia; Edder Delgado, Jorge Claros, Alexander Lopez (Jerry Palacios, 46th); Andy Najar, Roger Rojas (Rony Martinez, 69th), Diego Reyes (Marvin Chavez, 46th)
United States • Nick Rimando; Michael Parkhurst, Matt Besler, Clarence Goodson, DaMarcus Beasley; Kyle Beckerman (Mix Diskerud, 67th), Stuart Holden; Alejandro Bedoya, Landon Donovan (Chris Wondolowski, 72nd), Jose Torres (Brek Shea, 67th); Eddie Johnson