The Panama vs Cuba Gold Cup 2013 quarterfinal match will take place on Saturday, July 20 (12:30 PM Pacific) at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. Panama appears to be destined to make it to the semifinal round, as they will be facing a weak Cuban squad that was barely able to make it to the knockout stage. Will Cuba pull off a near miraculous victory?
Final Score Update
The Panama vs Cuba Gold Cup quarterfinals match ended in a disastrous performance by the underdogs Cuba. The first half had Panama play better, but Cuba seemed to have a chance at the score. The second half was a terrible performance by Cuba, as a player was red carded, and allowed 4 goals. The final score was 6-1 in favor of Panama who will now play in the semifinals against the winner of the Mexico vs Trinidad and Tobago game.
Panama ended Group A with an unexpected, yet well deserved, first place. The Canaleros opened up their first match of the group with a surprise 2-1 victory over a struggling Mexican squad. Panama defended well, scored when given the opportunity, and was by all means the superior team. This match was the first time they defeat Mexico during a Gold Cup tournament, and placed them with an excellent shot to win the group.
Panama followed up the Mexico victory, with a 1-0 win over Martinique. Panama struggled with the Caribbean side, but was able to pull out the victory in the end. With 6 points and an appearance in the quarterfinals guaranteed, Panama used an alternate squad against Canada, and tied the match 0-0. This confirmed Panama as the winner of Group A, its reward being a winnable quarterfinal match-up against Cuba.
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Frankly, I’m disappointed that Cuba made it to the quarterfinal stage, I would have preferred to have seen Martinique, which, in my opinion, played better than Cuba. Nonetheless, the structure of the tournament determined Cuba would play on. Cuba lost its first Group C match against Costa Rica 3-0. It then lost its match against the USMNT 4-1. Cuba’s last match was against Belize, and they needed to win by a four goal margin to move on to the quarterfinals.
Well, Cuba got the needed result, as a 93rd minute goal gave Cuba the 4-0 victory over Panama, sending them to the quarterfinals. Now, Cuba must prepare to face strong Panamanian squad that is hungry to make it deep in the tournament. Given both teams’ matches so far, I don’t see how Cuba will come close to defeating Panama.
Panama vs Cuba Prediction
The Panama vs Cuba match will be a one-sided encounter dominated by Panama. The Cuban squad demonstrated against Costa Rica and the USA that it is simply not at the level of the top-tier CONCACAF teams. Panama will dominate possession and create scoring opportunities, while Cuba will focus on defending and counterattacking.
The Panama vs Cuba match will end in a 3-1 victory for Panama, which will move on to play the winner of the Mexico vs Trinidad & Tobago encounter.
Panama vs Cuba Television
The Panama vs Cuba match will be televised on Fox Soccer Channel and Univision on Saturday, July 20, 2013 at 12:30 PM Pacific.