USA Knocked Out, Panamanian Controversy, and What's Next
Our boys are out... In a thrilling game the USMNT fell 2-1 vs Jamaica in the 2015 Gold Cup Semifinal. Jamaica played an excellent game and we should all be proud of our national team. Also Michael Bradley's valiant attempt at a comeback cannot go unrecognized either. He left his heart out on the field for us but was it too little too late?
At P. Wexford's Pub there were rumblings that the team began to play too late in the game. "The team was flat for the first 30 minutes." one Outlaw said.
"Defensive mistakes is what's killing us!" said another early on.
One thing that I felt was the crucial moment of the match was the handling of the ball outside of the box by Brad Guzan that drew the free kick for Jamaica and which ultimately led to the second goal. Although many mistakes were made Jamaica played extremely well.
Over the last 24 hours I have heard comments in regards that US Soccer and Jürgen Klinsmann have failed. But have they? Was the USMNT not good enough? Or is this a sign that the CONCACAF region is on the rise? Personally I would assume the ladder.
On the other side of the coin we witnessed a circus of a game in the Panama vs Mexico game. As I watched the game on UniDeportes I listened closely at the announcers whom were upset at not only the Mexican national teams' performance but with their character.
When Mexico was awarded the second penalty in the 88th minute of the game on what was an extremely questionable play; the UniDeportes announcers called for Andres Guardado to miss the penalty in honor of fair play.
"Penalty for Mexican National team. Watch this; the player is falling down with no intention to touch the ball. He didn't even touch it with his hand! He didn't even touch it!!! Please ref! A disgrace! I'll say it! An absolute disgrace!!! What did I say? If something like the Costa Rica game doesn't happen, Mexico doesn't go through. An absolute disgrace."
"Cover yourself in glory Andres and miss the penalty!!! Immortalize yourself and kick it out of bounds!!!"
"He doesn't have the character..." The two announcers exchanged.
They went on to say that the Panamanian team should have walked off the pitch with their heads held high over the injustice they clearly were served.
During extra time play was once again stopped due to players on the Panamanian bench pulling out their wallets and throwing money onto the pitch.
"Now the Panamanian players opening up their wallets and throwing money on the field insinuating that the game has been bought. This must be very uncomfortable for the Mexican players because they know. They know..." said the UniDeportes announcers.
After the game Andres Guardado was interviewed by UniDeportes and asked about the penalty kick and call where he openly admitted that the call was bad one.
"Andres why the discrete celebration after the PK?"
"Because it was a very uncomfortable situation for me. For all of us in general. At the end of the day you'll be held responsible for it. They would treat you like a player with no ethics or loyalty to your team. It's not your fault, it's a strange situation."
Today it was revealed that Andres Guardado went on to say that he initially thought about intentionally missing the penalty.
So what's next for us? Well we now will be cheering on our boys against a deflated Panamanian team on Saturday at 1PM! It may not be the Gold Cup final but our team is still playing.
We are also not out of the 2017 Confederations Cup just yet! No sir! The USMNT will be playing the winner of the 2015 Gold Cup in a playoff that will mostly likely be held at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA this fall on October 9th! So pack your bags, put your vacation requests in, and get ready AO Modesto! Because where they go! We'll follow!
What were your thoughts? Did US Soccer and Jürgen Klinsmann fail us? Is it time for a new manager? Remember Bob Bradley was fired after his loss to Mexico in the 2011 Gold Cup final.
Did CONCACAF fail Panama? Are you interested in going to the Confederations Cup playoff game in Pasadena, CA?
Let us know your thoughts below!