Panama knock US out of CONCACAF Gold Cup, to play Mexico in final

The United States, champions of the CONCACAF Gold Cup with their junior team two years ago, lost to Panama 5-4 via penalties. The match went into penalties after a 1-1 draw. Panama will play the Gold Cup final against eight-time champions Mexico.

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Panama took the lead in the 9th minute of extra time through Ivan Anderson, who scored his first international goal. However, Jesus Ferreira equalised for the US six minutes later. This is Panama’s third appearance in the final, having previously lost to the US in 2005 and 2013. This is the first time since losing their 2015 semifinal match to Jamaica that the United States has failed to reach the Gold Cup final.

After the kickoff, the closest the US came to scoring was when Cade Cowell’s shot hit the post in the first minute. It wasn’t until extra time that Panama took the lead after Carrasquilla made a pass to Anderson, who controlled the ball, beat goalkeeper Matt Turner, and found the back of the net for his first international goal.

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Ferreira equalised for the US six minutes later after a long pass from Matt Miazga to Jordan Morris, who headed the ball into the penalty area. Ferreira volleyed the ball into the net from 16 yards, beating a diving Orlando Mosquera. This was his 15th international goal and his seventh of the tournament.

In the penalty shootout, with the US taking the first shot, Mosquera saved Ferreira’s attempt. Fidel Escobar and Ismael Diaz scored for Panama, while Djordje Mihailovic and Morris successfully converted for the United States. Turner made some crucial saves against Christian Martinez and Julian Gressel, before Miazga converted his shot, resulting in the Americans leading 4-3.

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But Panama’s Cecilio Waterman equalised with his team’s fifth shot, while Mosquera saved Roldan’s attempt by diving to the right. Carrasquilla then secured the victory for Panama by placing his shot inside Turner’s right post.
The final will be played in Inglewood, California.

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