Saturday, July 23, 2005

Gold Cup final

Ok, we seem destined to win this thing. Panama is up next, and they are not as good as Honduras, hex or no hex. Some people have been saying to watch out for them, but I see little to worry about. They've played five games, and only won two, both over Colombia. Let's take a look so far:

1-0 vs Colombia. Very lucky to win this one. They were outplayed and Colombia should've scored several times but couldn't finish.

2-2 vs Trinidad. The Soca Warriors didn't get a win in three games, and they couldn't beat them. Let them equalize at the end.

0-1 vs Honduras. Kind of a meaningless game, didn't play well.

1-1 vs South Africa. Decent game, but South Africa probably was the better team.

3-2 vs Colombia. Best game of the tournament, and fully deserved to win. But it doesn't make up for the rest of the tournament.

We haven't been playing that well either, save for the Jamaica game, but we have moments of brilliance, and it'll take only one to beat Panama. They lost to Honduras earlier, and we just beat them. And they couldn't score on Honduras. It's interesting to note that in all seven Gold Cup finals, the losing team did not score. So I think Panama is going to be shut out.

We'll be missing Pope and Mastroeni thanks to injuries suffered on Thursday, as well as Casey and Cherundolo from earlier. I would expect to see Hejduk in the lineup, and possibly Vanney as well for a four man backline with Onyewu and Conrad. Who knows. Armas has played well, but Dempsey could take his place. Although, Dempsey seemed to be a spark as a sub, and I think Bruce would like to have that off the bench. Wolff hasn't been great, but Noonan is untested and is unlikely to start.

Prediction: USA 2-0 Panama

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