Gold Cup 2013: Most Impressive Performances of Tournament so Far
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The 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup is underway, and it's been wild. The Gold Cup happens every other year and determines the best teams from North America, Central America and the Caribbean. Already this year we've seen a few surprising wins and losses and some great individual performances.
As teams continue to fight and claw their way to the eventual meeting in the finals in Chicago and a shot at winning the 2013 Gold Cup. Here are a few of the most impressive performances in this year's CONCACAF Gold Cup.
Panama vs. Cuba
Panama has had a great run in the tournament so far, as it sits at the top of Group A with two wins and one draw and a total of seven points. Panama leads Mexico, six-time winner of the Gold Cup, Martinique and Canada in the group.
On its way to an early first-place bid in Group A Panama was matched up with Cuba and put on one heck of a show. Panama beat up on Cuba 6-1 and were just dominant in almost every category. Panama outshot Cuba 19-6 and recovered 64 times to Cuba's 14.
Manuel Torres and Blas Perez were the stars for Panama as they each put up two goals in the contest, Torres with the first two goals of the game and Perez with the last two. The other goals were netted by Carlos Rodriguez and Jairo Jimenez.
Panama sits atop Group A with a plus-2 goal differential and three total goals.
Cuba vs. Belize
While they did get destroyed by Panama, Cuba hasn't had it all bad in the 2013 Gold Cup. Last week they beat up on Belize, shutting it out 4-0. Cuba scored four of their five tournament goals in this game and looked good doing it.
Cuba got 34 shots off to Belize's nine and was treated to a hat-trick by midfielder Ariel Gonzalez. The fourth goal came from Jenier Marquez in extra time.
Cuba might not be dazzling audiences a ton, sitting in third place in Group C behind Costa Rica and the U.S., but when the Cubans took the field against Belize they were looking to send a message. Unfortunately for Belize, the message was received loud and clear.
USA vs. Everyone
The USA national team have been on a tear. They are 3-0 with wins coming over Belize, Cuba and El Salvador, whom they didn't just beat, they destroyed. The U.S. first took on Belize and won 6-1 with three goals from Chris Wondolowski, and one apiece from Landon Donovan, Stuart Holden and Michael Orozco.
Can the U.S. win the 2013 Gold Cup?
Their next game wasn't as dominant but it was pretty darn close as the U.S. roughed up El Salvador 5-1. This time the U.S. would spread it around; five different players contributing goals this time, including another goal from Landon Donovan.
The Americans faced two less than formidable opponents, but good or not, they still had to put the ball in the net, and they did...a lot. The U.S. sits at the top of Group C with nine total points, more than anyone else in the tournament. The U.S. has been outscoring opponents by a total of nine goals and has allowed just two goals.
The USA national team have a long way to go before they can take home the Gold Cup title, but if they keep playing like they have, they won't have much trouble.
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