Cuba vs Martinique Preview, Tips and Odds

Cuba will face Martinique for their second-round game in the Gold Cup at Sports Authority Field in Denver. The Cubans lost from Mexico in the first game with the massive scoreline of 7:0. Martinique also lost their opening Gold Cup match losing 4:0 against Canada and both nations are now at the the bottom of the group.

HEAD TO HEADLAST GAMELAST GAMESLAST GAMES HOME/AWAY
Cuba Loss 4 W/ 1 D/ 2 L 1 W/ 0 D/ 0 L
Martinique Win 2 W/ 1 D/ 4 L 0 W/ 0 D/ 1 L

Last game between the nations: 08.12.2012 Martinique – Cuba 1:0’ Frederic Piquionne 30’
Last game on Cuban soil: 13.12.2004 Cuba – Martinique 2:0

Worth mentioning: Only one of the seven H2H clashes between Cuba and Martinique produced over 2,5 goals, and again one witnessed goals at both ends. The Lions of the Caribbean were able to keep four clean sheets in their games against Les Matinino. Martinique have been unable to score more than once in any of the matches with the Cubans. Four times the games between the national football teams of Cuba and Martinique featured under 1,5 goals.

AS OF 16.06LAST GAMELAST GAMESLAST GAMES HOME/AWAY
Cuba Loss 5 W/ 1 D/ 4 L 4 W/ 0 D/ 1 L
Martinique Loss 5 W/ 0 D/ 5 L 2 W/ 0 D/ 3 L

Last game Cuba: 16.06.2019 Gold Cup: Mexico – Cuba 7:0; Carlos Antuna 2’, 44’,80’, Raul Jimenez 31’, 64’, Diego Reyes 38’, Ernesto Alexis Vega 74’
Next game Cuba: 24.06.2019 Gold Cup: Canada – Cuba
Last game Martinique: 16.06.2019 Gold Cup: Canada – Martinique 4:0; Jonathan David 33’, 53’, Junior Hoilett 62’, Scott Arfield 67’
Next game Martinique: 24.06.2019 Gold Cup: Martinique – Mexico

LAST 10 GAMESGF:GAOVER 2,5BTTSCLEAN SHEETS
Cuba 22:12 4 1 6
Martinique 15:15 6 3 4

Worth mentioning: Cuba will be looking for their first victory in five matches when they face Martinique, as they are are currently on a run of four straight defeats. The Lions of the Caribbean did not score in their previous three outings as they hit the back of the net against Haiti for the last time. Three of the previous five Cuba games produced over 2,5 goals, while just one witnessed goals at both ends.

The loss to Canada in their first Gold Cup game ended Martinique run of four consecutive victories. None of their previous ten matches finished in a draw. Three of the last five Martinique games featured over 3,5 goals, while just one saw both involved sides hitting the back of the net. Martinique managed to score in seven of their last ten away games, and the same number of encounters produced over 2,5 goals.

Missing players Martinique: No reports of injuries or suspensions.

Cuba vs Martinique GC2

 

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CONCACAF Gold Cup 2019: Group A Preview

The 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cup kicks off with two North American and two Caribbean teams in Group A. Mexico is the clear favorite, but the other three teams should not be overlooked. Will Cuba and Martinique break through to the quarterfinal or will Canada finally deliver on their long-promised resurgence?

SCHEDULE

Saturday, June 15

Canada vs Martinique, 7:30 PM ET

Mexico vs Cuba, 10:00 PM ET

Wednesday, June 19

Cuba vs Martinique, 8:00 PM ET

Mexico vs Canada, 10:30 PM ET

Sunday, June 23

Canada vs Cuba, 6:00 PM ET

Martinique vs Mexico, 8:30 PM ET

Cuba

FIFA Rank/Elo Rating: 174/129

Odds of winning: Dark Horse

Cuba has enjoyed relative success at the Gold Cup, reaching the quarterfinal round three times (2003, 2013, and 2015). After not qualifying in 2017, the Leones del Caribe finished in sixth place in CONCACAF Nations League qualifying with impressive wins over the Dominican Republic and Grenada.

The last two Cuban Gold Cup squads were solely comprised of domestic players, making this year’s team a bit of an outlier; eight of the 23 players are on the rosters of clubs in the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, and Panama. Cuba is led by young attacker Luis Paradela (Universidad SC) who has five goals in six international appearances, while maintaining a similar strike rate at the club level in Guatemala’s Liga Nacional. Sandy Sánchez (Don Bosco-Jarabacoa) will be the likely number one at goalkeeper, having earned 13 caps. Thirty-one-year-old midfielder-defender Yasmany López (Ciego de Ávila) provides a veteran presence on the squad with 29 caps.

Cuba plays Mexico in its first match, which gets the hardest test out of the way early. The defense has struggled to prevent dynamic dribblers from slaloming through their compact final third (particularly against Haiti), but most teams would find it difficult to stop El Tri’s attackers. Manager Raúl Mederos’ side will head into the second match confidently in control of their own destiny or harshly subdued on the heels of a demoralizing loss.

Martinique

FIFA Rank/Elo Rating: Ineligible (Not a member of FIFA)/89

Odds of winning: Dark Horse

Les Matinino earned a spot in the Gold Cup by finishing CONCACAF Nations League qualifying in third place. The country’s best finish in six competition appearances is a 2002 quarterfinal showing. Martinique is not eligible to qualify for the World Cup, as they are not a member of FIFA, so the Gold Cup is essentially their biggest competition.

The bulk of the roster is comprised of players from the two dominant sides in the Martinique Championnat National (top division), Club Franciscain and Golden Lion FC, with an infusion of talent playing abroad. Defenders Jordy Delem (Seattle Sounders), Jean-Sylvain Babin (Sporting Gijón), and Samuel Camille (Tenerife) comprise a very serviceable defensive line. Domestic striker Kévin Parsemain has 34 goals in 51 caps, and will be expected to be the attacking linchpin; he finished as one of co-leading goal scorers at the 2017 Gold Cup with three tallies. There’s also the trio of players based in France – Wesley Jobello (Gazélec Ajaccio), Joris Marveaux (Gazélec Ajaccio), and Kévin Fortuné (Troyes) – who are still integrating into the squad, but could make an impact.

Martinique’s mission is to advance out of the group, which will likely require at least four points. If they’re able to secure a draw against Canada in the tournament’s opening match, it would set the tone for a brutal fight for second place.

Mexico

FIFA Rank/Elo Rating: 18/17

Odds of winning: Favorite

Mexico enters the tournament as the top seed, under the leadership of newly hired manager Gerardo “Tata” Martino. El Tri has won a record seven Gold Cup competitions, most recently triumphing in 2015, and routinely enjoys strong fan support with a decided home field advantage. The program – having once again failed to advance past the Round of 16 at the World Cup – is in a state of flux, caught between relying on the serviceable old guard and integrating young talent. This isn’t the strongest Mexican side, but the expectations have been and will always be winning the Gold Cup.

As one would expect, the roster is comprised of talented players from Liga MX and abroad. Experienced mainstay veterans will carry the side through the group stage; physical striker Raúl Jiménez (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Jonathan dos Santos (LA Galaxy), captain Andrés Guardado (Real Betis), and Héctor Moreno (Real Sociedad) are included in the 23-player roster. However, Mexico was hit with the injury bug and will be without the services of dynamic attacker Hirving “Chucky” Lozano (PSV Eindhoven) and midfielder Marco Fabián (Philadelphia Union). Additionally, Carlos Vela (Los Angeles FC), Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez (West Ham), and Jesus Corona (Porto) are also skipping the tournament for various reasons. Martino is unperturbed,telling ESPN, “The important absences that we have... opened the door to see some young players that we wanted to see.”

Despite worries about the tenacity and fluidity of the attack, Mexico looks primed and ready for the Gold Cup. They defeated Venezuela, 3-1, and Ecuador, 3-2, in pre-tournament friendlies, with Rodolfo Pizarro (Monterrey), Carlos Rodriguez (Monterrey), and Roberto Alvarado (Cruz Azul) looking ready to be serious contributors.

Canada

FIFA Rank/Elo Rating: 78/66

Odds of winning: In the Running

John Herdman’s squad stormed through Nations League qualifying with a 4-0 record, easily reaching the Gold Cup. Canada remains the only nation other than Mexico or the United States to capture the tournament, triumphing in 2000. While this is probably not their year to return to the winner’s circle, don’t be surprised if Les Rouges make a push for the semi-finals and springboard into a strong showing in World Cup qualifying.

Canada can rely on a few different players to score goals and won’t be locked into any specific playing style. Lucas Cavallini (Puebla), Junior Hoilett (Cardiff City), Alphonso Davies (Bayern Munich), and 19-year-old talent Jonathan David (Gent) can keep pace with dynamic CONCACAF attacks, whether through possession or Route 1 counter attacking; if caught on the right day, Beşiktaş striker Cyle Larin can add target man abilities off the bench. The defensive group is less reliable and relatively inexperienced, with MLS defenders Doneil Henry and Mark-Anthony Kaye playing key roles. Goalkeeper is a mild question mark, with Waking the Red noting that number one Milan Borjan (Red Star Belgrade) will likely split time with the rapidly improving Max Crépeau (Vancouver Whitecaps).

This is a team that absolutely should advance, but Canada has a history of failing to meet expectations in a most dismal fashion. They have the benefit of playing Cuba in their third group play match, which could require three points. Avoiding Mexico in what could possibly be a must-win scenario is in every CONCACAF team’s best interest, so look for this side to pull off four-to-six points and advance from the group.

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Gold Cup contenders banking on youth

The 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup is all set to begin, with 12 teams vying for regional glory in the United States over the next three weeks. 

The tournament looks set to uncover some new talent, with most sides opting to pack their squads with youngsters, while some of the region’s lesser lights have the opportunity to pick up valuable experience at the highest level. FIFA.com previews the tournament, which starts on Friday 7 July and ends on 26 July.

Group A: Canada, Costa Rica, French Guiana, Honduras
Group B: USA, Martinique, Nicaragua, Panama
Group C: Mexico, El Salvador, Jamaica, Curacao

The format
The top two from each section in the group phase will advance to the quarter-finals, along with the best two third-placed sides. The winners of the four last-eight ties will progress to the semis, with the tournament concluding on 26 July with the match for third place and the final.

Three things you need to know

1 Mexico will be pitching up in the USA with a much-changed squad to the one that appeared at the recent FIFA Confederations Cup Russia 2017, not that anyone should be mistaken about their intentions. Featuring the country’s most promising players, the Tri squad will not be short of pace and has the ability to trouble any defence. Led by Rodolfo Pizarro and Jesus Gallardo, the young Aztecas will be determined to acquit themselves well and take a big step forward in their careers.

2 Down on their luck lately, Costa Rica are anxious to return to prominence. Beaten quarter-finalists at the last three Gold Cups, Los Ticos are hungry for glory. Coach Oscar Ramirez has picked virtually a full-strength squad, though he will be without keeper Keylor Navas. Can they make up for the absence of the Real Madrid custodian?

3 Since taking charge of Nicaragua nearly three years ago, Costa Rican coach Henry Duarte has injected some belief into their cause. Narrowly beaten by Jamaica in the third round of qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™, Los Pinoleros now have the perfect opportunity to continue their recent improvement, with their goal being to advance beyond the group phase for the very first time in their history.

Players to watch
Rodolfo Pizarro (MEX): A mainstay with Mexican champions Guadalajara, the 23-year-midfielder is in the form of his life and has his sights set on a dream move to Europe. An intelligent, pacy player with an eye for goal, Pizarro will be the cornerstone of this Tri side. His ability to dictate the play will be crucial in channelling the energy of his young team-mates.

Ismael Diaz (PAN): Though only 20, Diaz has picked up plenty of experience already, having represented his country on the FIFA U-17 and U-20 World Cup stages. With seasoned campaigners Blas Perez and Luis Tejada both absent, Diaz will be one of the men Panama will be looking to for goals.

Romell Quioto (HON): Spearheading Honduras’ new breed, the 25-year-old attacking midfielder is sure to be one of their trump cards in Group A, having formed part of the side that finished fourth at the Men’s Olympic Football Tournament Rio 2016.

Did you know?

  • Panama have conceded no more than one goal in 15 of their last 16 Gold Cup matches. The man charged with maintaining that record in the USA is Jose Calderon, who takes over goalkeeping duties from Jaime Penedo, a veteran of six Gold Cups but absent from this tournament.
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