It’s no surprise to see Mexico gearing up for another Gold Cup Semifinal, this time against Canada. El Tri have been a perennial powerhouse in the tournament from the start, going for title number 12, ninth in the modern era, this year. USA follows in second with six Gold Cup trophies. While the start of the tournament was a bit rocky for the Mexicans, they’ve done excellent to settle in and have even begun to display their dominance.
Mexico Dance Past Honduras, Face Canada in Gold Cup Semifinal
After a shocking draw against Trinidad to open the tournament, Mexico didn’t panic, didn’t change tactics, and advanced as group winners. While they haven’t set the tournament alight with offense, they’ve proven up to now, defense can still win it. Canada, for their part, look to avenge a 2019 group stage defeat at the hands of El Tri. The Canadians were set for a semifinals clash then, but an upset minded Haitian side had other plans. Mexico eventually won the tournament, and Canada aim to ensure history doesn’t repeat itself.
Golden Goose Egg
About that Mexican defense. While they couldn’t net one of over 30 shots during their draw against Trinidad, they made sure the opposition couldn’t either. Trinidad finished with just four shots, with none finding the target. To this point, Mexico have only allowed a combined 25 shots, with only five shots on target. Luis Rodríguez and Carlos Salcedo have been great in defense, with the former even netting a goal. However, they’ll have to put in another great performance to get past a Canada side with a potent attack.
— Mexican National Team (@miseleccionmxEN) July 29, 2021
Canada can score goals. With the exception of the 1-0 shutout at the hands of the USA, Canada have netted at least two goals in each of their matches this tournament. They are tied for second in most goals for the tournament (8) and are coming off a two goal shutout win over Costa Rica. Jonathan Osorio and Junior Hoilett will be ones to watch in the attack. While Mark-Anthony Kaye can lock down the midfield, provide defensive cover, and create chaos in the final third. With the added chip of wanting to show they too can be a Concacaf power, this might be the best chance Canada have to dethrone El Tri.
The Last Word
As it stands, many are penciling in a USA v Mexico Finals match in Las Vegas. While both are respective favorites on paper, both face matchups that could play out either way. The biggest hurdle for Canada will be overcoming the Mexican defense. If they can score early, that will put a little more pressure on Mexico to find an equalizer, having to play down for the first time this tournament. However, if they sell out on attack too much, the likes of Orbelín Pineda and Rogelio Mori will have a field day, and dance their way to a Finals spot in Vegas.