Concacaf W Gold Cup Matchday 1 Recap

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USWNT
United States midfielder Lindsey Horan, left, and Sophia Smith, center, celebrate with forward Trinity Rodman, right, who scored in the second half of a FIFA Women’s World Cup send-off soccer match against Wales in San Jose, Calif., Sunday, July 9, 2023. (AP Photo/Josie Lepe)

The first-ever Concacaf W Gold Cup is in full swing! All 12 nations have played their first matches, and it is clear that the favorites are not going to slip up, at least at the beginning of this tournament. Let’s look at the first six matches of the tournament that took place on matchday one of the W Gold Cup!

USWNT, W Gold Cup
United States midfielder Lindsey Horan, left, and Sophia Smith, center, celebrate with forward Trinity Rodman, right, who scored in the second half of a FIFA Women’s World Cup send-off soccer match against Wales in San Jose, Calif., Sunday, July 9, 2023. (AP Photo/Josie Lepe)

Concacaf W Gold Cup Matchday 1

Group A

Mexico 0 – 0 Argentina

The game that kicked off the first W Gold Cup saw the 35th-ranked team in the world, Mexico, take on the 31st-ranked team in the world, Argentina! The match had a lot of potential to be a banger, but early on we saw that this one was going to fall short of that expectation.

In the 9th minute, Mexico won a PK, but Rebecca Bernal couldn’t convert it. This would be the theme of the match. Argentina never really got into the game and produced only two shots all game. Mexico was able to create seven shots, five of which were on target, but they couldn’t score any.

Both nations had to split the points on matchday one, they’ll be hard-pressed to pick up points in their two remaining matches against the USA and the Dominican Republic at this W Gold Cup!

USA 5 – 0 Dominican Republic

The USWNT came into this Concacaf W Gold Cup brimming with confidence and a young and hungry squad! They got off on the right foot. More on their big win can be read in our in-depth recap of the match written by Regina Ham:

The USA gets back in action tonight, taking on Argentina; the Dominican Republic plays Mexico. We’ll know a whole lot about the standings in Group A after these second matches at the W Gold Cup!

Group A Standings

  1. USA | 3 pts | +5 GD
  2. Argentina | 1 pt | 0 GD
  3. Mexico | 1 pt | 0 GD
  4. Dominican Republic | 0pts | -5 GD
USWNT, W Gold Cup
United States’ Alex Morgan takes a shot on goal during the Women’s World Cup Group E soccer match between Portugal and the United States at Eden Park in Auckland, New Zealand, Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2023. (AP Photo/Andrew Cornaga)

Group B

Panama 0 – 6 Colombia

Group B play opened up with a nation that has not had a whole lot of success in recent years in Panama, and a nation that made the quarterfinals of the last Women’s World Cup, Colombia. This was a matchup of two different teams on two different levels.

Colombia came out and dominated the game. They had 77% of possession and took 25 shots, 15 of which were on target. Some of those shots were converted into goals at the tail end of the first half. Manuela Pavi scored two goals in nine minutes, and Catalina Usme scored a third goal just before halftime.

Panama really struggled to come out and create anything after that, they only created six chances, three of which were on target. Colombia kept grinding them down, adding three more goals in the second half to win 6-0. Both nations will head into their second matches with their work cut out for them against Brazil and Puerto Rico at this W Gold Cup!

Brazil 1 – 0 Puerto Rico

The second matchup in Group B saw another giant of Conmebol, Brazil, take on a minnow of Concacaf, Puerto Rico. One would think that this match would look similar to how the Colombia-Panama game went, but they would be wrong.

Brazil did dominate Puerto Rico, but that domination did not include a goal-fest. The Brazilians held almost 70% possession and took 28 shots with 16 of them on target, but they couldn’t find the breakthrough. With 10 minutes left, Puerto Rico thought they might just find a way to get a point; however, Gabriela Da Silva scored in the 81st minute to give Brazil the lead.

Puerto Rico failed to get any real chances after that and only created three shots on target all game. They fell to Brazil 1-0. Brazil will clash for first place in Group B this weekend against Colombia, while Puerto Rico and Panama will fight to get their first points of this W Gold Cup!

Group B Standings

  1. Colombia | 3 pts | +6 GD
  2. Brazil | 3 pts | +1 GD
  3. Puerto Rico | 0 pts | -1 GD
  4. Panama | 0 pts | -6 GD
World Cup, W Gold Cup
Colombia players celebrate after Manuela Vanegas scored her side’s second goal during the Women’s World Cup Group H soccer match between Germany and Colombia at the Sydney Football Stadium in Sydney, Australia, Sunday, July 30, 2023. (AP Photo/Rick Rycroft)

Group C

Costa Rica 0 – 1 Paraguay

Another matchup of closely ranked Concacaf and Conmebol teams met to kick off Group C play. Costa Rica (43rd in the world) and Paraguay (50th in the world) played in an extremely tight game full of drama but not full of goals.

Costa Rica held the majority of possession at 60%, they also created more shots 10 to Paraguay’s eight. However, both nations put six shots on target. This game was so close in just about every aspect but lacked the quality in the final third to create goals. The lone goal in the game came early in the second half. Lice Chamorro scored in the 51st minute, and Paraguay was able to defend the rest of the way to secure a W!

Paraguay gets a huge three points and will take on group favorites Canada in matchday two. Costa Rica will feel hard-done not to get anything from this game, but the bright side is that they’ll take on a struggling EL Salvador side in their second game at this W Gold Cup!

Canada – El Salvador

The final match of matchday one at this W Gold Cup featured a Canadian side looking to show that they are one of the favorites at this W Gold Cup going up against an El Salvador team ready to shock the world. Only one of them was able to practice what they were preaching in this match.,

Canada came out swinging in this game. They scored three times before the half-hour mark and didn’t let El Salvador get into the game. The El Salvadorans only were able to create three shots all match and were already losing by the 3rd minute. Canada added three more goals in the second half to match the mark for the top-scoring team of matchday one and won this game 6-0.

El Salvador fell flat but gets the chance to right their wrongs against Costa Rica on matchday two. Canada is looking very good, and will have the chance to win the group if they can beat Paraguay in their second match this weekend in the W Gold Cup!

Group C Standings

  1. Canada | 3 pts | +6 GD
  2. Paraguay | 3 pts | +1 GD
  3. Costa Rica | 0 pts | -1 GD
  4. El Salvador | 0 pts | -6 GD
World Cup, W Gold Cup
FILE – Japan’s Jun Endo (12) and Canada’s Ashley Lawrence (10) battle for the ball during a women’s soccer match at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Wednesday, July 21, 2021, in Sapporo, Japan. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo, File)

Matchday 2 kicks off tonight!

The first matchday is in the books. The favorites are on top, but some of them will face off against each other on matchday two. Here’s a look at the upcoming matches at this W Gold Cup!

  • Dominican Republic vs Mexico | Friday, Feb. 23 | 7:30 pm ET
  • Argentina vs USA | Friday, Feb. 23 | 10:15 pm ET
  • Puerto Rico vs Panama | Saturday, Feb. 23 | 7:30 pm ET
  • Colombia vs Brazil | Saturday, Feb. 23 | 10:15 pm pm ET
  • Paraguay vs Canada | Sunday, Feb. 24 | 5 pm ET
  • El Salvador vs Costa Rica | Sunday Feb. 24 | 8 pm ET

This tournament is only beginning, and the second matchday should produce more competitive matches! Don’t miss the action streaming on Paramount+ this weekend in the W Gold Cup!

World Cup, W Gold Cup
Brazil’s Debinha kicks the ball past France’s goalkeeper Pauline Peyraud-Magnin, right, to score their first goal during the Women’s World Cup Group F soccer match between France and Brazil in Brisbane, Australia, Saturday, July 29, 2023. (AP Photo/Tertius Pickard)

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Mandatory Credit: AP Photo/Josie Lepe, AP Photo/Andrew Cornaga, AP Photo/Rick Rycroft, AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo, File, & AP Photo/Tertius Pickard.