The United States impressed in their latest match against Trinidad & Tobago. Their intensity was shown as revenge was on their mind since Trinidad eliminated the USA from the 2018 World Cup. Going forward, they can build off this because it is the sharpest they have looked. Zardes finished two goals where he was set up for perfection. Pulisic controlled the midfield while distributing the ball onto the foot of his teammates or into space for them to run on to. Additionally, he was able to net one goal as well. Through two games in the Gold Cup, he has stepped up in the ways the supporters and squad has expected.
Gregg Berhalter’s system showed its fruition vs Trinidad & Tobago producing six goals. In the 55th minute, the field tilted in the United States’ favor with their high press. Arriola remains the only member to start all matches under Berhalter and continues to create chances on the wing. More importantly, the right back, Nick Lima, dazzled by pressing forward when the US had possession. Bradley crossed a ball into Lima where he performed a precise headed pass to Zardes for his first finish of the night and to set up the avalanche of goals to come.
Group D Outlook
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The Stripes and Stripes and Panama have both successfully advanced to the Knockout round. Yet, who will place first and second is still to be decided. Consequently, they will face each other in the final group match. It will be interesting to see what type of starting XI each manager deploys. Panama needs a victory to surpass the United States. A draw or win in Kansas City would see the USA through to Philadelphia as the winners of Group D.
Unfortunately for Guyana and Trinidad & Tobago, both have been eliminated. They will play each other in a game that is meaningless.
Group A Situation
Group A’s third round will resolve who is advancing in the second spot. The Gold Cup favorites, Mexico, are triumphantly through to the next round and will square off against Martinique. With first place basically locked up, El Tri could give some of their starters a rest from this match. There is a combination of scenarios that send Martinique through. First, they need Canada to lose to Cuba while gaining a point against Mexico. Next, if Canada draws and they win, they would also be through. Last, if Canada and Martinique both win, goal differential would determine who advances. Martinique is not positioned well in that category.
Canada can advance with the same scenarios above for Martinique but against a weaker opponent in Cuba. One statistical advantage they hold is goal differential over Martinique along with looking sharper on the pitch. Canada should be through with Cuba upcoming in their final group match.
Group B Outlook
The top teams will versus each other in Group B while both have already advanced. Costa Rica and Haiti will want to avoid Mexico in the next round so this match is critical. For Haiti, the only way to bypass Mexico until the semifinals would be with a win. Conversely, a veteran Costa Rica side will be satisfied with a draw. Look for Costa Rica to dictate the pace of this game and see themselves through.
Regrettably for Bermuda and Nicaragua, their tournament has one game remaining against each other for a prize of a moral victory.
Group C Situation
Both matches are substantial in Group C since no team has successfully advanced to the Knockout round. However, Honduras is eliminated due to two teams already having four points. Awaiting them is El Salvador which should feature an evenly matched battle. Predicting a winner is difficult due to Honduras wanting to play spoiler.
Jamaica and Curacao highlight the other important match. The Reggae Boyz have the experience in the Gold Cup mixed with the youth of Leon Bailey to make them a dangerous side. Although this may be true, Curacao will not roll over for them. They have their own expectations to live up to of being in the Knockout round. To appease that, they will need a win which will prove to be too burdensome.