Soccer Picks: USA vs. Panama Fighting for Gold Cup 3rd Place

Steven Suarez

Friday, July 24, 2015 4:59 PM GMT

Friday, Jul. 24, 2015 4:59 PM GMT

After a shock loss to Jamaica in the semi-finals, the United State will try to bounce back with a victory in the third-place match against Panama. What sort of soccer betting odds are on offer?

Odds Overview
Despite a poor showing in the semi-finals, the Americans will still enter Saturday's match as the favorites, with soccer odds makers quoting them at right around -150 to win and thus finish third in the Gold Cup.

If you instead think Panama is the right way to go with your soccer picks, you can find a nice plump number across the board at the top sportsbooks. The numbers start at +450 or so and go up to as high as +550 at some sites.

 

USA
Well, that wasn't exactly how the Americans envisioned things going down. After an excellent start to their Gold Cup campaign, and following a 6-0 drubbing of Cuba in the quarter-finals, it was widely expected that the US would be able to get the better of Jamaica in the semi-finals and therefore book a spot in the finals.

It wasn't meant to be, however. Jamaica was well up for the occasion and went up 2-0 in the first half to stun the hosts. The US was able to peg one back just a couple minutes into the second half, but they were unable to find the back of the net again, falling 2-1 inside the Georgia Dome as the soccer odds-on favorites.

There's no other way to put it but to say it was a complete and utter failure for Jurgen Klinsmann and his men. He sent out a strong starting XI, but it didn't pan out, meaning the Americans now have to fight for third place in a tournament many expected them to win.

 

Panama
Just like their upcoming counterparts, Panama had to suffer through some immense heartbreak in the semi-finals

Against a favored Mexican outfit, the Panamanians were in shock when Luis Tejada was shown a red card in the 25th minute. It was a big blow, but Panama responded brilliantly, even managing to go up 1-0 despite having only 10 men on the pitch. There was more controversy to come, though, as Mexico was awarded a dubious penalty in stoppage time and then another penalty in extra time, both of which Andres Guardado dispatched. Panama was left wondering what the heck had just happened in a gut-wrenching 2-1 defeat.

It's hard not to commiserate with the team, considering how well they've played all tournament. They had a legitimate chance of overcoming Mexico and making an unlikely trip to the finals, but instead have to now settle for this third-place decider against the US. 

 

Gold Cup Pick
To be fair, we were a little hesitant to back the Americans after that massive letdown against Jamaica, but the truth remains that they're the more talented team overall and still have a huge home-field advantage.

Panama has to get a lot of credit for battling so hard in each and every match of the Gold Cup so far, and we expect nothing less again in this third-place decider. The Panamanians have been extremely upset with some of the refereeing decisions in the competition so far, but they need to put that aside and focus on this match with the US first and foremost.

Thing is, we just don't see Panama winning this match. The Americans may mess around a little bit with their starting XI, but either way we should see a strong team, a team ready to make it up to their faithful supporters following the early exit. With your soccer picks, we recommend backing the favorites to do just enough to earn third place.

Soccer Pick: USA 2 Panama 1

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