The 2023 Concacaf Gold Cup is kicking off this weekend. This is a month-long international tournament where 16 nations battle it out to win the giant Gold Cup trophy and gain supremacy over the other nations in the region! We’ll be following along with all the action, but first, let’s take a look at the groups and nations competing continuing with Group D!
Group D of the 2023 Gold Cup
The final group at this Gold Cup, Group D has a shark and three minnows of Concacaf. Canada is the new kid on the block in the region, they want desperately to show that they belong at the top. Cuba and Guatemala are smaller teams with a whole lot to prove on what will be a very big stage. Guadeloupe had a tough road to get to the group stage, but now they’re hoping to show they belong.
Will we see the shark of Group D devour the minnows? Or will one of the minnows raise their game to sneak a few punches on the shark? Canada is the clear favorite, but who will join them in the knockout rounds?
Canada is now big boys in Concacaf. Their great run in World Cup qualifying showed the region and the world who they are. This is a structured side that lives to defend and break quickly on the attack. They have star players who relish the opportunity to show that the Maple Leafs are a true powerhouse in the region.
This side will be expected to make it out of the group. However, not only making it out is good enough, winning it and making a deep run will be needed if they want to be counted as a big boy in the region. Their failure at the World Cup has hindered this thought. Fixing their reputation will fall on manager John Herdman to get the most out of his team. Can he get the most out of Alphonso Davies, Johnathan David, and company to make a run to the Cup?
Cuba is a small fish looking to swim upstream and make a splash at this Gold Cup. They know who they are; an underdog that no one expects anything substantial from them. Because of this, the pressure is off of them and all on their opponents. Can this small nation be able to play like there is no pressure and take their chances when they come?
Over their last 10 games, Cuba has been a good-to-great team. They have six wins, a draw, and three losses over this time. While the quality of the opponent wasn’t at the level of Canada, this team has found ways to create a winning culture. Could that be the foundation to push them past the group stage and onto the knockout rounds?
Guatemala is not a nation that is talked about much with the likes of even fringe concacaf nations when it comes to strong teams. That could all change at this Gold Cup. This Guatemalan side has something f to prove, not just for themselves, but also for the future generations of this team. If this version of Guatemala can get out of the group and find a way to win a knockout game, then this team could just build something.
It will take a lot for this side to make that type of impact in Group D play. Canada will be difficult for them, and Cuba is in a very similar position to them. Guatemala will be hungry but will have to feast on the chances they get to sustain any kind of success.
Guadeloupe is the final concacaf nation that had to qualify for the 2023 Gold Cup group stage through preliminary rounds. They beat Antigua and Barbuda last weekend, then took down Guyana earlier this week. Now this side will have to face off against a giant of the region, and two fringe teams. Could Guadeloupe keep their winning going?
Their recent form is promising, but this team will be predicted to finish last in the group. To not do that and possibly even make it out of the group, this side will need to be all but perfect. Guadeloupe is a team that has been bled by playing in actual meaningful matches. They’ll need to use that to their advantage to stand a chance against their Gold Cup opposition.
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Mandatory Credit: Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire & News/Panoramic/Icon Sportswire