SPORTS

Reggae Boyz vs. Mexico 2023 CONCACAF Gold Cup Preview

Jamaica Reggae Boyz, the FIFA-ranked 63rd team, will do battle against Mexico, which holds the 14th position in soccer global ranking.

Both teams made it past the quarter-final, with Mexico beating Costa Rica 2-nil with goals from Orbelin Pineda and Erick Sanchez.

Meanwhile, the Reggae Boyz came out on top against Guatemala with a 1-nil win, thanks to a goal by Amari’i Bell.

Notwithstanding, the Reggae Boyz Head Coach, Heimir Hallgrimsson, was hoping for a better performance against the Guatemalans, and even though the men under his charge did not play up to his expectation, he was happy with the one-nil win.

“We learned a lot from this match, but still, we did enough to win but I would say this performance would probably not be enough to win Mexico in 3 days. So, we need to learn from this game, and we need to be more like a team even though we are happy with what is happening,” said Hallgrimsson in his post-match interview.

“You know we are now two games in a row without conceding a goal, which is always a good sign. When you are in a knockout competition so some things we recognize that we did not do well and the same with changes now we might suffer to have done the changes maybe a little bit late in the game but it was more important to win this match rather than thinking two steps ahead and then maybe lose and concede a goal,” added the coach.

Undoubtedly, pundits and soccer fans will be in for a treat of soccer that could easily be dubbed reggae versus salsa at the Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas on Wednesday, July 12, 2023.

The match will kick off at 10:30 p.m. ET and will broadcast live locally and internationally.

This will be the third consecutive Gold Cup semifinal between Jamaica and Mexico, with El Tri winning both previous encounters by a 2-0 scoreline in 2015 and 2017.

Jamaica’s run at this Gold Cup has been quite extraordinary.

Heading into the tournament, they had nothing much to brag about in the win column throughout the year.

But now, they’re just one win away from a final appearance since 2017.

Both teams met just a few months ago in the CONCACAF Nations League.

The match finished 2-2, but the talents of the likes of Michail Antonio and Demarai Gray were missing back then from the lineup.

Despite the fact that the last two meetings finished in draws, the Jamaicans are one-goal underdogs for Wednesday night’s match.

Mexico, who put together a steady performance vs. Costa Rica, has the better odds of winning the match, according to some punters.

However, Jamaica’s front four of Antonio, Gray, Bailey, and Reid could pose problems for Mexico and tell a different story from the punters.

The Reggae Boyz have scored in all their matches thus far, and they’d think this match should be no different.

However, Mexico has averaged over two goals per game at the Gold Cup, giving them goal-scoring bragging rights.

So far, their key stars Orbelin Pineda and Luis Romo lead El Tri have scored two goals apiece, and cannot be taken lightly on the pitch.

Still, El Tri has been missing dominant attacking play without Raul Jimenez and Hirving Lozano.

Mexico has scored at least twice in three of their four matches, but their failure to score vs. Qatar put them earlier in a spot of bother.

Jamaica will be hoping to end their losing streak against Mexico and reach their third final in four tournament editions.

Mexico will be aiming to make their ninth final appearance and defend their status.

It should be an exciting and competitive match between two of the best teams in the region.

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Readers Bureau, Contributor

Edited by Jesus Chan

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