The United States Men’s National Soccer Team is aiming to pull of a feat it has only achieved once before: win back-to-back CONCACAF Gold Cup championships.
In order to accomplish this goal not done since 2007, the Americans will have to take on their biggest rival as they meet Mexico on Sunday evening at Soldier Field in Chicago. Unlike the women’s installment of U.S. soccer, who are massive favorites in the Women’s World Cup final, betting on the men’s side in the 2019 Gold Cup Final has tons of value at all the best PA sportsbooks, including SugarHouse as they come into the match as underdogs on American soil.
The United States and Mexico have a long and storied rivalry that includes several meetings in the Gold Cup, and the latest chapter is sure to provide more fireworks as the two clash once again for the trophy. In total, the USMTN and El Tri have previously met five times in the Gold Cup Final, with Mexico winning the cup four times, including the most recent matchup in 2011 (USMNT won in 2007). This year, in the United States’ tournament-record 11th appearance in the final, it has an uphill battle against the PA sports betting odds to exercise some of its demons against its North American neighbor.
What Is the CONCACAF Gold Cup?
The Gold Cup is the premier tournament of CONCACAF (Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football) to determine the international soccer champion of the region. CONCACAF was formed in 1961 with the championship beginning in 1963 until it was restructured as the CONCACAF Gold Cup and modified to its current form in 1991. The tournament is played every two years at a rotating venue, though each of the last eight finals have been played in the United States. In 2019, four new teams were added to the field, making it a total of 16 countries.
USMNT Home Underdogs In 2019 Gold Cup Final
Despite being in peak form and playing on home soil, the United States are underdogs against Mexico heading into the final in Chicago. According to SugarHouse Online Sportsbook PA odds, the USMNT is +250 to win the trophy in full time, which includes only the first 90 minutes and injury time.
If you’re looking for a great payout AND a reason to root for the Americans, this line is perfect for you. After all, the last six Gold Cup final matches have been decided before extra time, including all five between these two countries. The issue, however, can be that a tight-knit match forced into extra time equals a loss regardless of the ultimate result.
When we remove a draw from the equation and stretch the competition to encompass the entire match and any extra time/penalties that come along with it, the United States is +150 to win the Gold Cup trophy for a second consecutive time (Mexico is -186). Using other lines like total goals (under 2.5 is favored at -150), we can put into context that oddsmakers expect a low-scoring, tightly-contest game.
While some of the value has been chipped away, the convenience of having no time limit on a USMNT victory in is what attracts bettors to picking the full match as opposed to regular time.
2019 Gold Cup Prediction: Golden Opportunity For United States
Both El Tri and the Americans are on five-match winning streak since breezing through three fixtures in group play and another two in the knockout stages. Believe it or not, however, the USMNT has been the most in-form country at this Gold Cup. A lackluster quarterfinal performance was followed by a much more convincing semifinal victory over Jamaica, while Mexico needed extra time to slot a penalty kick against Haiti and advance to the final.
Strong performances from star striker Christian Pulisic along with veterans Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore have helped inspire belief in a group that now feels as though it’s the country to beat. Even United States coach Gregg Berhalter described Mexico as vulnerable, providing some insight about the confidence level of the USMNT heading into the final match. There’s reason to feel good if you’re the USMNT. In addition to scoring goals in bunches, the defense has been suffocating for the entire tournament, and a victory in the Gold Cup final doesn’t require anything extra from the USMNT, just more of what it’s already proven itself capable of.
For our prediction, we will simplify things and remove the possibility of a draw as we select the United States to win the match and raise the Gold Cup trophy for a second consecutive time. Taking into account the USMNT’s form and the fact that El Tri does not have its level-one roster at this tournament for a variety of reasons, this is a golden opportunity for the United States re-assert itself on a huge international while winning some money for PA sports betting players.
2019 Gold Cup Final Pick: United States Wins (+155 on SugarHouse Sportsbook PA)