CONCACAF Gold Cup betting: Smooth path for USA to reach semi-finals

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Updated: July 19, 2017

The first night of CONCACAF Gold Cup quarter-final action will be played in hot and steamy conditions in the City of Brotherly Love, Philadelphia. We fancy a tight opening game between Costa Rica and Panama before the USA takes on El Salvador in a match-up we expect the host nation to dominate; overall record: 5-6, -1.45 units

 

CONCACAF Gold Cup quarter-finals: Costa Rica v Panama
Where: Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, PA, USA
When: Thursday, July 20, 8am (AET)
Prices: Costa Rica $2.35, Panama $3.40, DRAW $2.90

Confirmed bet: DRAW (one unit @ $2.90)

TIW says: Two contenders for Russia 2018 will test their mettle in a high-stakes CONCACAF Gold Cup quarter-final as they each seek to become the first Central American nation to win the Gold Cup. Costa Rica topped Group A ahead of Canada, Honduras and French Guiana. Panama, meanwhile, are in the game after finishing second in Group B, behind the United States but above Martinique and Nicaragua. The winner of this match will face the victor of tonight’s rubber match in Philadelphia between the United States and El Salvador. Both sides brought a number of younger players to this tournament along with a smattering of established stars such as New York City FC midfielder Miguel Camargo for Panama and Costa Rican attacking duo Ariel Rodriguez and David Ramirez.

 

This will be the first meeting between the sides in Gold Cup play, though they have met more than 40 times in a rivalry that dates back to 1938. Perhaps fitting for the group that relied so much on teamwork and organisation in their improbable run to the 2014 World Cup quarter-finals, Costa Rica have spread the goals around. Each of their five goals in the group stage were scored by different players, with three MLS-based players getting in on the act: Marco Urena (San Jose Earthquakes), Francisco Calvo (Minnesota United) and Rodney Wallace (NYCFC). Panama must prepare to find the net against an opponent that will provide a much stiffer test than either of their last two group opponents – Martinique and Nicaragua.

 

CONCACAF Gold Cup quarter-final: USA v El Salvador
Where: Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, PA, USA
When: Thursday, July 20, 11am (AET)
Prices: USA $1.25, El Salvador $13.00, DRAW $5.50

Confirmed bet: USA -2/hcp (one unit @ $2.70)

TIW says: With a fight for Russia 2018 still looming, the USA need all the momentum they can find, and a win over El Salvador in the quarter-final round would be a good start for the squad that finished atop Group B. Coach Bruce Arena has brought in a group of MLS-based veterans to take on their Central American opponents. El Salvador, with little to lose, will be looking to pull off a shock against the likes of Clint Dempsey (pictured below), Michael Bradley and Tim Howard. Saturday’s 3-0 win over Nicaragua extended the USA’s current unbeaten to 11 matches, all occurring since Bruce Arena returned as coach last November. With a 6-0-5 record, the current 11-game unbeaten streak is tied with the mark set by Bob Bradley.

 

He led the USA to a 10-0-1 record during his first 11 games in charge in 2007. With four quarterfinal appearances, most recently in 2013, La Selecta (captained by San Jose’s Darwin Ceren) don’t exactly fall into “just happy to be here” territory. But while El Salvador did finish second in the first CONCACAF Championship in 1963, the quarter-final round has proven to be their ceiling in Gold Cup play. Their most recent appearance in the quarters was also the last time they faced the United States in the Gold Cup. That ended badly for the Central American side, with the US cruising to a 5-1 rout behind goals from Clarence Goodson, Joe Corona, Eddie Johnson, Landon Donovan and Mix Diskerud.

 

Most recent results: 2-2, +1.9 units

El Salvador v Curaçao -1.5/total (one unit @ $3.00) LOSE (2-0)
Mexico -1/hcp v Jamaica (one unit @ $2.10) LOSE (0-0)
Nicaragua v USA/win to nil (two units @ $1.80) WIN (0-3)
Canada v Honduras DRAW (one unit @ $3.30) WIN (0-0)

 

 

• Selections are listed in three categories – 1) Suggested (likely bet but yet to be finalised); 2) Confirmed (locked in at the price listed); and 3) Leans (tips, but not recommended bets); all times quoted are Australian Eastern Time (AET); prices with thanks to Bet365 (except where markets are not available), correct at time of publication. Results/comments on today’s games/races will follow in the next post.

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