CONCACAF hopes expanded Gold Cup will develop regional football

By George Davis, Lance Whittaker& Mariah Ramharack April 23, 2019

Jamaica will be the first country to host a Gold Cup match outside of  North America in the upcoming tournament.  CONCACAF Chief Football Officer Manuel Zubiria explains the idea behind a bigger, wider tournament.

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  • Curacao, El Salvador open historic Jamaica Gold Cup games Curacao, El Salvador open historic Jamaica Gold Cup games

    The 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup breaks new ground as the Group C encounter between Curaçao and El Salvador marks the tournament debut at the National Stadium in Kingston, Jamaica.

    The two teams meet again after facing each other in group action in the 2017 edition – a match El Salvador won 2-0 on its way to the quarterfinals.

    Monday’s match is the second time the two sides have met at the Gold Cup after Curacao made their debut in the competition two years ago. The two nations have met seven previous times, with four going El Salvador’s way, while the other three ended in draws.

    El Salvador Head Coach Carlos de los Cobos returns to the Gold Cup after managing the team at the 2007 and 2009 editions. He will likely look to Nelson Bonilla and Oscar Ceren, the country’s top scorers in Concacaf Nations League Qualifying, to help the team off on the right track.

    Curacao will be looking for their first favorable result in the competition after going winless in their maiden voyage. Manager Remko Bicentini believes his team can be the surprise of the tournament and has called on 12 returning players from the 2017 roster.

  • Haiti come from behind to get the better of game Bermuda Haiti come from behind to get the better of game Bermuda

    A brace from Frantzdy Pierrot allowed Haiti to showcase experience with a 2-1 win over Bermuda on Sunday evening at the Estadio Nacional of Costa Rica to open Group B of the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup.

    After both teams had a 50-50 ball possession for the first half, Bermuda responded with a total of two shots on target before the breaking the deadlock at the end of the first half. One minute was added when Dante Leverock found the back of the net with a header which was assisted by Osagi Bascome in the 45+1’.

    Haiti looked to mount a comeback as the second half started with a very fast pace, which is when Pierrot waited for his chance, burying a shot in the 54’ with a header from the right side of the six-yard box allowing Haiti to tie the match.

    Twelve minutes later Frantzdy was back at it in the 66’ with a right-footed shot that went straight to the center of the goal.

    The historical night in Costa Rica was then capped by the Haiti defense finishing the match to pocket Les Grenadiers’ first three points of the Gold Cup.

  • Costa Rica start well with attacking performance against Nicaragua Costa Rica start well with attacking performance against Nicaragua

    Costa Rica’s attack led the way to a 4-0 victory over Nicaragua as it kicked off its participation in the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup on Sunday night at the Estadio Nacional in San Jose, Costa Rica.

    Costa Rica went ahead early on the scoreboard when just seven minutes into the match Bryan Oviedo poked it home to get a 1-0 lead.

    With Costa Rica playing at home for the very first time in a Gold Cup match, Los Ticos captain Celso Borges doubled the side’s lead to 2-0 with a strong strike in the 19’.

    Then Elias Aguilar found himself at the right place and the right time shortly before halftime, as he made it 3-0 in the 46’ when he found the back of the net with a free kick.

    Nicaragua who had several opportunities during the first half, but was not able to finish its chances. It continued to push until the final minutes with its best look in the 72’ from Jorge Betancur’s right-footed shot from the right side, but it was blocked by Costa Rica GK Leonel Moreira.

    As the final minutes played out, Costa Rica’s attack continued to push forward for one last goal. MF Allan Cruz scored his first of the night in the 75’ to put the 4-0 on the scoreboard, which marked an unforgettable night for Los Ticos.

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