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USMNT Faces Crucial Gold Cup Semifinal Against Panama in Quest for Title Defense

 USMNT Faces Crucial Gold Cup Semifinal Against Panama in Quest for Title Defense

USMNT Faces Crucial Gold Cup Semifinal Against Panama
USMNT Faces Crucial Gold Cup Semifinal Against Panama(Image-Getty)

The United States looks to secure their spot in the Gold Cup final on Wednesday evening in San Diego as they defend their title. A victory over Panama is crucial for their advancement to the final on July 16 in Los Angeles.

Here's how you can watch and stream the match:

- English: FS1

- Spanish: Univision, TUDN

Date and Time:

Wednesday, July 12 | 7:30 pm ET/4:30 pm PT


Snapdragon Stadium | San Diego, Calif.

The winner of this match will face either Jamaica or Mexico in the regional title match. The USMNT aims to add the Gold Cup to their recent Nations League triumph, completing a clean sweep of confederation honors.

While the USMNT may be confident in their pursuit of an eighth Gold Cup title, Panama should not be underestimated. They gave the United States a scare during the 2022 World Cup qualifying, defeating them 1-0 in Central America before suffering a 5-1 defeat in the return leg.

Adding an intriguing element to this matchup is the fact that it takes place at the future home of MLS's yet-to-be-named 2025 expansion team, offering a glimpse into the soccer culture of the Southern California city.

The USMNT topped Group A with 2 wins, 1 draw, and a +12 goal difference. In the quarterfinals, they faced a dramatic 2-2 draw against Canada and secured a victory through penalty kicks. Goalkeeper Matt Turner, formerly of the New England Revolution, emerged as the hero of the shootout, exemplifying his leadership as the tournament's captain.

While Jesús Ferreira of FC Dallas did not score against Canada, he remains a player to watch after recording two hat tricks in the group stage. Other key players include DeJuan Jones of the New England Revolution and James Sands of New York City FC, who have provided stability to the team.

Considering the short turnaround between matches, it remains to be seen how much interim head coach B.J. Callaghan will rotate the lineup. He has emphasized the importance of players stepping up and making the most of their minutes.

Panama, who finished first in Group C with 2 wins, 1 draw, and a +2 goal difference, secured an impressive 4-0 victory over Qatar in the quarterfinals. Forward Ismael Díaz's hat trick propelled them to victory. With an extra day of rest and less travel to the West Coast, they hope to gain a competitive edge.

Panama's central midfield features MLS players Coco Carrasquilla (Houston Dynamo FC) and Aníbal Godoy (Nashville SC). Both players provide stability, while the attacking presence of Díaz and Liga MX standout Yoel Bárcenas adds depth in the final third.

Historically, head coach Thomas Christiansen and his team aim to reach Panama's third-ever Gold Cup final. They previously reached the final in 2005 and 2013 but lost on both occasions to the USMNT.

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