Gold Cup Today: USMNT face Honduras, Panama vs. Haiti kick things off – Day 1


The first day of the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup tournament has arrived.

Just when you thought Women’s World Cup fever had dissipated, it’s time for the chaps to take over.

[ LIVE: 2015 Gold Cup updates ]

Jurgen Klinsmann’s side are the reigning Gold Cup champs and they will be in action on the opening day which see two Group A games take place in Frisco, Texas.

Below is a brief primer on what to expect from both, while you can follow the action live by clicking on the link above.

Game 1: Panama vs. Haiti
When: Tuesday, 7 p.m. ET
Where: Toyota Stadium, Frisco, TX
Live updates:

After reaching the final and narrowly losing to the U.S. 1-0 in 2013, Panama will be hoping to puts its World Cup qualifying disappointment behind them and go for glory once again. With FC Dallas forward Blas Perez playing in front of his home crowd, expect the Panamanian forward to give a spirited Haiti outfit plenty of problems. In the 2013 Gold Cup the Haitians made it tough for opponents, but Group A is likely to be a three-way slog between Panama, the U.S. and Honduras for a quarterfinal berth. Expect Panama to record a win and open up its 2015 campaign in style.

Game 2: USA vs. Honduras
When: Tuesday, 9:30 p.m. ET
Where: Toyota Stadium, Frisco, TX
Live updates:

Jurgen Klinsmann wasn’t too impressed with the USA’s performance in their final friendly before the Gold Cup, but the U.S. did beat Guatemala 4-0 in Nashville last Friday. That said, the USMNT know that CONCACAF foes Costa Rica and Mexico have improved drastically since the 2013 competition and if they want to earn that spot in the 2017 Confederations Cup in Russia, they will have to be at their best this summer.

ProSoccerTalk’s Andy Edwards is in Texas with the U.S. and spoke with Klinsmann and USMNT skipper Michael Bradley on the eve of this tough test vs. Honduras. One of four CONCACAF teams who went to the World Cup last summer, Honduras have the likes of Andy Najar who could cause the U.S. problems out wide and the last time these teams met the U.S. drew 1-1 with Maynor Figueroa grabbing a late equalizer. If the U.S. gets off to a slow start, expect a large contingent of Honduran fans to get  louder and louder inside Toyota Stadium. Settling for a draw isn’t disastrous for the U.S. but they will want to start their title defense off strongly.