USA vs Mexico was a dream Gold Cup final, which fans across both sides of the border were relishing, but it all came crashing down as Jamaica defeated USA in the semifinals on Wednesday to enter their first Gold Cup final.
Jamaica will meet Mexico in the final of the Gold Cup on Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. Mexico defeated Panama in the semifinals of the competition, with the score reading 2-1.
Though Jamaica's victory against the US might be considered as a shock result, the Caribbean team have been mighty impressive in the tournament so far. Right from the group stages, they have put up some impressive performances, finishing atop of Group B, which included teams such as Costa Rica, El Salvador and Canada.
Jamaica were pitted against Costa Rica, who were the highest FIFA ranked team (14) in the competition, in the group opener and they finished the game 2-2. It was from thereon that the team attained confidence, and they have not lost a single game in the Gold Cup.
They defeated Haiti in the quarterfinals and US in the semifinals, but their biggest test is going to lie against Mexico, who are the most successful team in the Gold Cup.
Mexico have won the title six times and are favourites to clinch the title for the seventh time around as well. Mexico need to up their game in order to achieve the feat.
Mexico are yet to fulfil their potential in the 2015 Gold Cup as they have not taken the tournament by storm, as expected. Mexico only managed a single win in the group stages, which saw them finish second to Trinidad and Tobago in Group C.
They even struggled against Costa Rica in the quarterfinals of the competition, as they progressed to the semifinals only after a controversial penalty. Against Panama as well, Mexico should be considered lucky as they defeated their opponent 2-1, thanks to two penalties.
The game was once again marred by controversies with referee Mark Geiger coming under severe criticism.
The Mexican team will now walk into the final with a thing or two to prove as their defeat against Costa Rica and Panama, as some might say, have not been on exactly fair.
With Mexico yet to play their best football, it is not going to be a huge surprise if Mexico come up with their best game, top Jamaica and silence their critics.
Gold Cup Final Schedule
Match 26: Mexico vs Jamaica
Date : Sunday, 26 July
Time : 7:30pm local time (5am IST)
Venue: Lincoln Financial field in Philadelphia