Jamaica tops Panama to punch ticket to semifinals

Jamaica defeated Panama 1-0 in the first of two 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup Quarterfinals at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia on Sunday night.

A 75th minute penalty conversion from veteran FW Darren Mattocks was the difference in the match. Jamaica Manager Theodore Whitmore substituted Mattocks into the game just two minutes prior.

The first half saw a handful of chances for Panama, all of which were handled with relative ease by Jamaica GK and Captain Andre Blake.

Panama enjoyed some crisp attacking flurries in the first 45, the lovely link-up play leading to one major opportunity, MF Abdiel Arroyo blasting a shot into the side netting at the near post from close range in the 26th minute.

Jamaica weathered the storm for much of the night before finding the breakthrough from 12 yards out. Mattocks went low and to the right with the right foot, sending Panama GK Luis Mejia the wrong way to give Jamaica the lead.

The game’s lone goal was the fifth in Gold Cup play for Mattocks, the most in Jamaica history.

Jamaica will now play the winner of the United States vs. Curacao in a semifinal in Nashville on Wednesday night.