5 Best International Goals of the Week
Domestic football took a back seat during midweek as nations around the globe honed their preparations for World Cup qualifying with a series of friendly matches.
For some, it was indeed the real thing, with important qualifying points up for grabs.
Plenty of the bigger footballing nations went up against each other with the likes of Germany and Holland, Italy and France and England and Brazil squaring off, though those fixtures don't always necessarily provide the best excitement to watch.
Any of the players deemed capable of representing their nation have the talent in their boots to score the odd cracker or two, and this time around proved no exception.
Here are the five best goals from this week's international action.
Honduras vs. USA
Juan Carlos Garcia gets us started with a fantastic execution of an overhead kick, scored for Honduras against the United States.
This goal came in a World Cup qualifying match, where Honduras surprised the USMNT by winning 2-1, having come from a goal down.
After the US failed to clear a corner, Garcia turned superbly to hook the ball into the far corner after receiving a chest down from a teammate.
England vs. Brazil
As part of the English FA's 150-year anniversary preparations, England played a prestigious friendly against Brazil at Wembley.
Ronaldinho missed a penalty before Wayne Rooney opened the scoring, only for substitute Fred to score—and hit the bar with another chance—straight after halftime.
Frank Lampard scored the goal of the game though with a very well controlled, first-time shot in off the post to give England a 2-1 win.
Costa Rica vs. Panama
Back to Central and North America now and the qualifiers for the region, with another overhead kick from Bryan Ruiz to claim an important point for Costa Rica.
His team had to come from two goals down against Panama to draw 2-2 in the end.
Ruiz managed to steer his bicycle kick into the far corner off the post after the ball was touched back to him in the penalty area, completing the comeback with just six minutes to go.
Sweden vs. Argentina
Another Europe vs. South America friendly match now and Rasmus Elm netted perhaps the goal of the week with a driven free kick from range.
Argentina were already out of reach somewhat, leading the game 3-1, but Elm showed that his Swedish national team mate Zlatan Ibrahimovic is not the only one who can score with fierce set pieces with this effort.
Elm beat the goalkeeper from about 30 yards with his excellent effort. The game ended 3-2 to Argentina.
Portugal vs. Ecuador
The last goal on our list comes from Portuguese captain Cristiano Ronaldo, who scored a goal which showed both good team play and fine individual technique—even before the ball arrived to him.
Joao Moutinho and Fabio Coentrao showed good awareness in combining outside the penalty area before an audacious backheel from the latter fed Ronaldo into space.
One flick over the defender's head and a well-hit volley later, Ronaldo had netted another goal in his fine start to 2013, this time helping Portugal draw level momentarily with Ecuador at 1-1. The game went on to finish 3-2 to the South American side.