The final round of group matches in the CONCACAF Gold Cup begin on Sunday night when the concluded games in Group A and Group B will be played out on what might be a nervy night for a number of teams.
USA and Mexico were expected to cruise through these sections and while the latter have already come out of their group, the former still have work to do if they are going to take their place in the quarter finals.
The first of the groups to finish on Sunday night is Group A where the big game comes from Charlotte as the USA look to hold onto top spot when they take on Trinidad & Tobago. USA will be into the quarter final if they avoid defeat in this match but a win could see them top the group depending on the other game. Trinidad & Tobago have to win and if they are able to do that it could well send USA out. That would depend on the outcome of the other match in Santa Clara where Jamaica take on Saint Kitts and Nevis. Jamaica are through if they come out of the game with a draw but a win could see them top the group should they win by three more than USA win by. Saint Kitts and Nevis are already out.
Mexico are the top dogs in Group B and they have already secured qualification for the quarter finals. It would take something pretty remarkable for them not to top the group too. They conclude their group campaign against Qatar in Santa Clara. Qatar have to win to have any chance of progressing and would then need Haiti to fail to beat Honduras in the other game. That match takes place in Charlotte where Haiti will just need to avoid defeat to go through unless Qatar pull off a shock against Mexico. Honduras know that they have to win that match and then they will be into the last eight if Mexico avoid defeat.
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I’ll go with a couple of bets over the course of the evening. I’m not really in the game of tipping up massive Asian handicap lines but I do fancy Jamaica to cover a 4.25 line against a Saint Kitts and Nevis who have looked well out of their depth in this competition. USA were 4-0 up against this opposition in barely 20 minutes the other night and while Saint Lucia kept it to six in the end I’m not sure there will be any stopping this very strong Jamaica attack. One of the reasons why I don’t think they’ll be able to stop it is because it is littered with Premier League talent but the other reason is because winning this group means you avoid Mexico, who have looked the standout side in the tournament, in the semi-final and end up in the weaker looking half of the draw so the incentive is there for Jamaica to get on the front foot and never relent. Jamaica probably need to win by five or six at least to top the group and I think that will be their aim. This line doesn’t look high enough, particularly when you consider a limited Trinidad & Tobago put three past Saint Kitts and Nevis.
In the other group I’m very surprised we can get a fair price on Haiti in the draw no bet handicap line in their match against Honduras. For all the good play that Honduras have delivered in this tournament, when it comes to putting the ball in the back of the net they have really struggled. That has not been an issue for Haiti. They have scored in both matches and have looked pretty good going forward. Honduras have enjoyed a fair bit of possession in this section so far but they get to the final third of the pitch and everything seems to come to a standstill which is the sign of a lack of confidence as much as quality in the top area of the pitch. Haiti attack with pace and quality and I think over the course of the 90 minutes they’ll have too much for a Honduras team who are struggling to replicate their good play in the first two-thirds of the pitch in the final one.
Back Jamaica (-4.25AH) to beat Saint Kitts and Nevis for a 3/10 stake at 1.98 with Bet365
Back Haiti (0AH) to beat Honduras for a 3/10 stake at 1.80 with Bet365