Canada responded strongly to a shock opener by Martinique with a resounding 4-1 comeback victory to open up its Gold Cup with three points in Group B.
Martinique got off to a lively start, scoring a scrambling goal in the 10th minute against Canada thanks to Emmanuel Rivière. Kevin Fortune intercepted a pass and sent in a quick ball to his feet, Rivière cut through an unprepared Canadian defense. With a touch from Rivière, the ball took a slow roll to the post and for a moment, it seemed like it might be saved off the line by defender Mark-Anthony Kaye, but he couldn’t quite hook his foot on it in time.
This marks the second time in Goal Cup history that a Martinique player has scored the first goal in a Gold Cup group stage. Fabrice Reuperne in 2013 was the other, also against Canada.
Unlike that game, however, Canada still had plenty of time to respond and did so almost immediately. On a set play in the 16th minute, Cyle Larin rose above all others in the box to knock home a sharp header to bring Canada level. It would be the impetus for Canada’s three following goals.
With some pressure off after finding the equalizer, Canada continued to string together good possession plays and soon found another goal. In the 20th minute, Tajon Buchanan charged to the goal line with a slick move to his left, passing back for Jonathan Osorio, who merely had to redirect the ball to the back of the net.
Stephen Eustaquio capitalized on some excellent ball movement by Canada to score its third goal. Eustaquio received the ball at the top of the goal area and shot to the corner, far too quickly for goalkeeper Meslien Gilles to make the save.
With Canada having asserted itself after trailing so quickly, it dominated the possession for most of the match with a 65 to 35 percent advantage.
Canada showed they weren’t quite satisfied in the second half, as Theodor Corbeanu notched yet another goal in the 89th minute. Coach John Herdman’s players got an early wake-up call by Martinique but responded with a dominant performance.