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Salcido and Beasley meet in Gold Cup final (

22 jun 2007 - Source:

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Archrivals Mexico, with Carlos Salcido, and the United States, with DaMarcus Beasley, will meet on Sunday in the final of the Gold Cup, the Northern and Central American equivalent of the European Championship, after sneaking past Guadeloupe and Canada respectively in Thursday's semi-finals.
A thunderbolt of a shot Guadeloupe bravely held out to favourites Mexico in front of 50, 000 spectators at the Soldier Field Stadium in Chicago until the 68th minute, when Pavel Pardo unleashed a thunderbolt of a shot that sailed past Franck Grandel into the roof of the net; 1-0. The FC Utrecht goalkeeper had pulled off a great save after 26 minutes from Carlos Salcido, who played the full 90 minutes. Minutes before Salcido had been in a one-to-one with Grandel and tried to round the keeper, but Grandel kept his composure and the PSV defender had his effort thwarted.
Title contenders
The Mexicans created some fine chances before the break, while Guadeloupe threatened only once. As Mexico were not able to break the deadlock, Guadeloupe bravely carried on, but their hopes of pulling off a stunning result were shattered after all and the Mexicans are still in contention for the title thanks to Pavel’s super strike.
A furious start
Hugo Sanchez’s team, playing in green/white colours, will meet current title holders USA in the final on Sunday. The United States of America had some sweating to do in their semi-final. DaMarcus Beasley played the full 90 minutes for the USA, but the PSV striker did not get his name on the score sheet. Coach Bob Bradley’s team started furiously and at half time they seemed to have already booked a place in the final. The Canada goalkeeper had to stretch at full length to push away a powerful shot delivered by Landon Donovan for a corner in the opening stages. Frankie Hejduk struck first after 39 minutes, while Donovan converted a spot kick on the stroke of half time, after Beasley had been hauled down in the penalty area.
Final in Chicago, Sunday at 21:00
The Americans continued to play attack-minded football in aggressive style after the break as well and immediately created a fine chance. Donovan, however, failed to kill off the game and then Canada staged a brave fight back. Iain Hume reduced the deficit after 76 minutes, when he scored a left-footed goal from 18 yards out. After USA head coach Bob Bradley's son Michael had been dismissed, Atiba Hutchinson thought he had scored a last-minute equaliser, but the referee controversially ruled out his goal for offside. The final between host and holders USA and four-time champions Mexico takes place at Soldier Field in Chicago on Sunday, with kick-off at 21:00 (Dutch time).