Gold Cup Final Pits USMNT Against Unlikely Foe

ARLINGTON, TX - JULY 22: Clint Dempsey (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - JULY 22: Clint Dempsey (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

The CONCACAF Gold Cup saw some surprises in the later rounds, now the USMNT team will face Jamaica in the Final.

Call it an unlikely Gold Cup Final match between the USMNT and Jamaica, with both teams vanquishing difficult foes in their respective semi-final matches.

The USMNT made a Gold Cup statement with a convincing 2-0 win over a Costa Rican team supposedly ready for revenge in the semi-finals, with Sounders star Clint Dempsey tying Landon Donovan for most international goals by an American National Team player.

Next for head coach Bruce Arena and the Americans is the Gold Cup Final at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara (home of the San Francisco 49ers).

Pretty much everyone assumed Mexico would brush off the Jamaican team at the Rose Bowl, essentially a home game for El Tri, Sunday night, but the Jamaican defense helped unseat the North American soccer power in the semi-finals with a 1-0 victory.

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It’s time to stop underestimating this Jamaican side. Two years ago, Jamaica beat the USNMT in the Gold Cup semi-finals on their way to hoisting the trophy. This year, a Kemar Lawrence free kick sent them to a rematch with the Americans in the Final. Calling the Jamaicans’ win over Mexico an upset is perhaps appropriate, but one shouldn’t be shocked at their effectiveness at quietly taking out opponents left and right.

It would have been Poetic Justice for the USMNT to face El Tri in the Final for a chance to knock off their rivals to the south for just the second time in a tournament final, but Arena and his players aren’t sweating it. Even though Mexico hasn’t been playing its best soccer recently, Jamaica shut the Mexicans out twice on their way to the Final, and the Reggae Boyz are surely preparing hard for their time in the spotlight.

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Will Sounders forward Clint Dempsey break down the staunch Jamaican defense for his 58th international goal and the USMNT record? Will the favored Americans win their sixth Gold Cup? Find out at 6:30pm tomorrow night on FS1 and Univision.