Heartbreak for Boyz ... USA edge Jamaica in Gold Cup final

July 27, 2017
Jamaica's Darren Mattocks (right) tackles the US' Omar Gonzalez during the second half of the Gold Cup final last night in Santa Clara, California. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

 

Jamaica suffered their second successive Gold Cup final defeat after they were beaten 2-1 by the United States in the final at the Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara last night.

Jose Altidore fired the US into the lead after 19 minutes, but the Reggae Boyz found the equaliser through Je-Vaughn Watson in the 54th minute. Any hopes the boys had of lifting their first Gold Cup title were dashed moments from the end when Jordon Morris fired home the winning goal.

As expected, the US dominated the early possession and looked to seize the initiative, but they found Jamaica's defence too stubborn to break down.

Their best chance came in the 19th minute, but Jamaica's man of the tournament, Andre Blake, made a great double save to deny the Americans. First, he parried Jose Altidore's ferocious shot and was quick to deny Kellyn Acosta the follow-up opportunity from six yards, before the ball was cleared off the line By Damion Lowe.

But Jamaica paid a dear price as Blake suffered a match-ending injury in his collision with Acosta and had to leave the field. He was replaced by Dwayne Miller.

The US continued to have the better of the game and pressed the Jamaicans in search of the opening goal but could found no clear path to trouble Miller.

 

Increased tempo

 

But in the last minute of the half, Altidore broke the deadlock with a superb free kick from 30 yards, that came off the bar, after Michael Bradley was brought down outside the box. To send the Jamaicans into the half-time trailing 1-0.

Minutes into the second-half the Reggae Boyz stunned the home nation with an equaliser, when Watson stole in at the back post to stab Kemar Lawrence's corner kick past Tim Howard in goal.

In the last 25 minute the US increased the tempo and had the Jamaicans on the backfoot but the Boyz kept them at bay. However, it required two excellent saves from Miller in three minutes to keep the Americans off the scoresheet. First, he had to parry Jordon Morris' shot for a corner on 72 minutes, then minutes later he tipped Clint Dempsey's header on to the post before it was cleared.

Moments afterwards, the Jamaicans broke dangerously and Oneil Fisher's cross was almost turned into his own net by a US defender.

But the host continued to apply the pressure and a minute from full time, Morris broke Jamaican hearts when he fired home a loose ball from 12 yards. Romario Williams gave the home fans a breif scare but his vicious volley from 20 yards went over the bar.

Blake was presented with the Golden Glove award becoming the first Jamaican to be named top goalkeeper for the tournament.

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