CONCACAF Gold Cup Group A: Analysis and Predictions
Get ready, United States soccer fans. The USA football squad hasn’t played a competitive match since their elimination from last year’s World Cup. However, on July 7th they’ll help kick off the CONCACAF Gold Cup in a match against Honduras. Show your support for the soccer team today by stopping by Soccer Box and picking up a USA home jersey 2014 – 2015 ahead of the big CONCACAF tournament. The USA will be in the CONCACAF Gold Cup Group A, and hoping to advance through the group stage to secure a place in the knockout rounds.
The 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup: Setting the State
Most of the world’s national football teams have seen at least a little bit of competitive action in the past 12 months. Germany, England, Spain and the rest of Europe have been doing battle in pursuit of qualification for the 2016 European Championship, while Argentina, Uruguay, Colombia, and other South American teams are currently embroiled in the 2015 Copa America tournament. Now, it’s time for football fans in North and Central America to have some fun.
This year’s CONCACAF Gold Cup is set to take place at 14 venues around the United States and Canada, and will run from July 7th to July 26th. The USA is one of 12 teams that will be competing in the event, and will be working to defend their 2013 Gold Cup title.
Group A: Teams and Odds
The defending champions from the United States will kick off CONCACAF as a part of Group A. The group, which also includes Panama, Haiti, and the aforementioned Honduras, is one of three groups in the tournament. The top two football teams from each group, of course, advanced to the quarterfinals, as do two of the three third-place squads.
Based on who they will face in Group A, the wearers of the USA football shirt should not have much—if any—difficulty securing a spot in the knockout stage. Since the Gold Cup was established in 1991 (a similar tournament had previously been contested as the CONCACAF Championship) the United States has never failed to make it past the group stage. More than that, only once since the inaugural 1991 Gold Cup has the USA failed to reach the semifinals.
Of the 12 Gold Cups held so far (2015 will be the 13th), the United States has won five. Mexico won six, and Canada won the 12th. No other team has ever won the title.
Needless to say, the American football squad is expected to do quite well in this year’s CONCACAF Gold Cup—especially after their above-expectations performance at last year’s World Cup.
That’s not to say that the other teams in Group A are exactly slouches though. Panama reached the finals in 2013, before losing to the USA 0-1. Honduras, meanwhile, have a history of podium finishes at the event, including a runner-up outcome in 1991 (also a tournament that the United States team won) and third-place slots in 2005, 2009, 2011, and 2013; they might just be due for a victory. In fact, of the Group A sides, Only Haiti look like easy opponents, having only made it past the group stage on two prior occasions.
July 10th will move the play to Foxborough, Massachusetts (Gillette Stadium), where the match-ups will be Honduras versus Panama and the United States versus Haiti. Group A will conclude on July 13th at Kansas City’s Sporting Park. Haiti and Honduras will face off first, followed by a 2013 Gold Cup rematch between the USA and Panama.
Our prediction? The United States wins the group, with Panama close behind. Honduras, meanwhile, will be left to contend for a wildcard qualification into the knockout stages, and Haiti will head home after the groups.
Are you ready for all of the Gold Cup action? Get ready for the tournament today by picking up a brand new USA jersey from Soccer Box! You can also keep up on the latest CONCACAF action by following Soccer Box on social media. We can be found on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn or other popular networks.