El Salvador squares off against Canada in a Group B 2015 Gold Cup encounter at the StubHub Center in Carson, California on Wednesday, July 8. El Salvador is currently ranked number 89 in the world by FIFA and is the ninth-ranked team in CONCACAF. Canada enters the game ranked at 109 in the world and 13th in CONCACAF. The Canadians managed to win the tournament for the one and only time back in 2000. Canada and El Salvador have met 14 times in the past with Canada winning seven of them, losing five and drawing the other two.
Gold Cup Betting Preview – El Salvador vs Canada
- bet365 currently lists Canada as the favorites to win this match at 10/11 with El Salvador 16/5 and a 90-minute draw at 23/10
Canada had a brutal 2013 as the team didn’t win a game and scored just once in 13 outings, but they’ve improved and enter this contest on a four-match winning streak. Their top players are 20-year-old forward Cyle Larin of MLS team Orlando City, 23-year-old Jonathan Osorio of MLS’ Toronto FC, and 35-year-old veteran goaltender Kenny Stamatopoulos of AIK Stockholm in Sweden. Canada will be without regular number one keeper Milan Borjan for the tournament.
Benito Floro has been managing Canada since August of 2013 and the team has been laying better under the 63-year-old native of Spain. He has over 30 years of experience and has managed on five continents. His highest-profile job was back in 1992 to 1994 when he was the boss at Spanish la Liga giants Real Madrid. Along with winning the trophy in 2000, Canada finished third in 2002 after losing to the Americans in a penalty shootout during the semifinals. The country has appeared in 11 of 12 Gold Cup tournaments to date and have reached the knockout stage four times. Canada also managed to capture the CONCACAF Championship in 1985 to earn a berth at the 1986 World Cup.
El Salvador has never won the Gold Cup as Mexico, the U.S and Canada are the only three teams to hoist the trophy since the tournament began in 1991. The nation has a young squad as the average age is just below 25. However, they’ll be without top striker Rodolfo Zelaya for the event. Zelaya helped the squad reach the knockout stages in the last pair of Gold Cup events. El Salvador comes into the game in poor form with just one victory in half a dozen outings so far this year.
The top players on the team currently are 27-year-old forward Rafael Burgos of Norwegian club Fredrikstad, 30-year-old midfielder Arturo Alvarez of Videoton, and 24-year-old midfielder Andres Flores of the New York Cosmos. The team is managed by 52-year-old Albert Roca of Spain who took over last year. He’s also worked with Galatasaray, Barcelona and Saudi Arabia as an assistant. This is Roca’s first head manager job and the team has five wins, 10 defeats and a pair of draws under him.
El Salvador has qualified for eight out of 12 Gold Cup events and the furthest they’ve gone has been the quarterfinal stage on four different occasions, including the last two tournaments. The team finished as runners up in the 1963 and 1981 CONCACAF Championship.
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