Curacao still has a chance to advance to the knockout stage
Group play continues to wind down at the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup. And as Group C wraps up, Jamaica (1-0-1, 4 points) takes on Curacao (1-1-0, 3 points) with a spot in the knockout stage on the line. Just one point currently separates these teams, as Jamaica has yet to lose while Curacao fell 1-0 to El Salvador in its opener back on June 17. Jamaica looks to reach the Gold Cup quarterfinals for the third straight time, while Curacao is hoping to earn its first trip ever to the knockout stage. This will be a fun game to watch.
Jamaica vs. Curacao
When: Tuesday, June 25 at 8 p.m. ET
Where: Banc of California Stadium (Los Angeles)
TV: FS1 and Univision
Three Things to Watch
1. What Jamaica needs to do
Simply put, win and you're in. Jamaica and El Salvador are tied for the top spot in Group C. Should both win, both will advance with goal differential (currently tied at +1) determining who gets the top seed from the group for the quarterfinals. But a loss for Jamaica would be problematic as that would put Curacao ahead in the standings and leave the Jamaicans hoping for Honduras to upset El Salvador, leaving it up to goal differential. If Jamaica takes care of business, they can watch the nightcap in a much more relaxed manner.
2. What Curacao needs to do
A victory would secure Curacao's first quarterfinals appearance in the Gold Cup and put the team in position to potentially win Group C should El Salvador lose. A loss by Curacao ends their Gold Cup while a tie keeps them alive, provided El Salvador loses. Then it comes down to goal differential, which El Salvador currently leads by just one.
These teams have split the previous two meetings with Jamaica winning the most recent one, defeating Curacao 2-0 in the 2017 Gold Cup. Jamaica enters this match with a 4-2-1 record over its last seven.
With Jamaica's consistency and Curacao's toughness in this year's Gold Cup, this game will come down to the wire. But I feel that in the end "The Reggae Boyz" find a way to pull away and advance to the knockout stage.
Prediction: Jamaica 2, Curacao 1
— Gabe Salgado is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. He's also written for NBC, Fox, The Sporting News, The Sports Journal, The Undefeated and Complex. He's a co-host of The Rewind Sports: 60. Follow him on Twitter @GabeSalgado82.