Can the U.S. appeal controversial Panama goal that left them out of World Cup?

So the U.S. men's national team failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup on Tuesday, but there is reason to believe they shouldn't have been eliminated. Panama beat Costa Rica 2-1 to clinch the final spot and send the U.S. crashing out, but the Panamanian's first goal didn't even go in. As to whether it can be appealed remained to be seen. 

CBS Sports reached out to U.S. Soccer about whether an appeal could be filed. Press Officer Michael Kammarman said in an email, "As far as I know there is no recourse. Decisions of the referee are final."

It all comes from Gabriel Torres's phantom goal that made it 1-1. You'll see here, the ball never crossed the line: 

Shocking. No goal-line technology, and this is what happens. An unbelievable scene, and certainly unfair. Yes, there's the human error part in any officiated match, but what recourse does the U.S. have? Rules from CONCACAF say an appeal can be filed for "parties directly affected by a decision" and that there are 21 days to file it -- whether this would fall under that remains to be seen: 

Article 54. Jurisdiction of CAS (Court of Arbitration for Sport in Lausanne, Switzerland) as an appeals arbitration body
1. As an appeals arbitration body, CAS shall be entitled to hear appeals against final decisions passed by CONCACAF.
2. Only parties directly affected by a decision may appeal to CAS. However, where doping-related decisions are concerned, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) may appeal to CAS.
3. The time limit for appeal to CAS shall be twenty-one (21) days from the receipt of the
decision in question.
4. An appeal before CAS may only be brought after CONCACAF's or FIFA's internal
procedures and remedies have been exhausted.
5. An appeal shall not have any suspensory effect as a stay of execution of a disciplinary
sanction, subject to the power of CAS to order that any disciplinary sanction be stayed
pending the arbitration.
6. CAS shall not take into account facts or evidence which the appellant could have
submitted to an internal CONCACAF body by acting

Now, it's certainly a long shot for anything like this to be overturned. CAS usually sees more cases about doping and was involved in CONMEBOL qualifying. The goal will almost certainly stand, but the U.S. would be wise to do whatever it takes to have its voice heard after this decision. It's the difference between the U.S. going still having a chance to go to the World Cup or sitting at home and watching it.

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CBS Sports Writer

Roger Gonzalez is an award-winning writer based in Virginia that has covered pro soccer from Europe's top clubs to Argentina's first division. Roger started out his pro soccer writing career with Goal.com... Full Bio

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