CONCACAF Gold Cup quarter-finals: Mexico meet Costa Rica for exciting clash
There are still two more semi-final spots up for grabs in the Gold Cup, after hosts the United States and Jamaica both sealed safe passage to the next round and now prepare to meet each other in Atlanta.
Impressive outsiders Trinidad and Tobago tussle with Panama, while all eyes will be on the headline duel between giants Mexico and Costa Rica. Which CONCACAF juggernaut will fall at the quarter-final hurdle?
Trinidad and Tobago v Panama
The Soca Warriors are an excellent price at 9/4 with Coral to triumph in 90 minutes, having been superb at the tournament so far, impressively holding their own against Mexico in a thrilling 4-4 draw last time out in the group stage.
Having topped Pool C with ease, and being yet to lose a Gold Cup game, Trinidad and Tobago seem smart money to progress to the semi-finals at the expense of favourites Panama (5/4 for victory), who only made it to the quarter-finals as best-placed third team.
Having split the spoils in all of their outings so far, The Red Tide have lacked cutting edge, and are 2/1 to end on even terms in normal time once again. Though Panama do boast impressive firepower in formidable frontman Luis Tejada, who is 8/1 to net first, while prolific Dallas forward Blas Perez is 7/1 to notch last.
As the in-form team, surprise package Trinidad and Tobago also hold the head-to-head record against the Canal Men, with seven wins from 14 previous meetings. Captain and cult hero Kenwyne Jones, currently on loan at Bournemouth, struck against the Aztecs, so is 7/4 to fire home again anytime, and punters can also back midfielder Keron Cummings, who bagged a brace, at a tempting 9/1 to score two or more again.
Mexico v Costa Rica
The glamour game of the quarter-final stage sees CONCACAF titans Mexico duel with Costa Rica, though El Tri are understandably odds-on favourties at 8/11 to take the spoils in 90 mins.
Despite all the clamour about being depleted in attack, Miguel Herrera’s men have clocked up 10 goals in three games, so customers can benefit from cracking odds of 15/4 for free-scoring Mexico’s marvellous marksmen to hit three or more past Central American foes Los Ticos.
El Tri certainly have history on their side, having lost to Costa Rica just six times in 49 clashes, emerging as victors in an emphatic 27 outings.
Predator Oribe Peralta (4/1 to draw first blood) is still Mexico’s top scorer in the tournament after hitting a heroic hat-trick, but Real Sociedad star Carlos Vela (5/1 to have the final say) and PSV Eindhoven attacking midfielder Andres Guardado (5/1 in the anytime market) are close behind on two apiece.
Costa Rica (4/1 for the win), meanwhile, are yet to take a game by the scruff of the neck and will need new Sporting Lisbon signing Bryan Ruiz (10/3 to hit home anytime) and Arsenal-owned attacker Joel Campbell (7/2) to be at their best.
Coral’s betting tip: back goals galore with Mexico @ 15/4 to score three or more