Our prediction for this Gold Cup match:
El Salvador will be looking to kick off their 2021 Gold Cup campaign in style when they take on Curacao at Toyota Stadium (Frisco). La Selecta have been producing fine displays in the 2022 World Cup qualifiers, but they were anything but impressive in July friendlies. It has to be noted that El Salvador head into the match following back-to-back losses to Istra and Qatar. Talented Vitesse attacker Enrico Duenas Hernandez has been omitted.
Curacao, on the other hand, missed out on a place at the next year’s showpiece tournament in Qatar. The nominal visitors still rely on Huddersfield Town midfielder Juninho Bacuna, but the game against El Salvador will be anything but a walk in the park for Guus Hiddink’s troops. Taking everything into account, a close encounter is on the cards in the Group A opener, and we are tempted to put our money on draw.
Highlighted Player (Andres Flores):
Nicknamed Ruso, Andres Flores joined River Plate youth academy in 2006. Flores played for River Plate’s Reserves from 2006 to 2008 and he was producing terrific displays with los Millonarios. However, he began his professional career in his homeland club Isidro Metapan, scoring ten goals in 95 appearances for the Salvadorian outfit. In 2012 he signed a loan deal with Danish club Viborg, but he played only one game for the Greens.
Andres Flores was then sent on a loan to New York Cosmos and after making eight appearances for the MCU Park outfit, he signed a permanent contract with the club in 2015. The El Salvador midfielder, who is capable of playing as a striker as well, made his debut for New York Cosmos on August 2, 2014 in a 1-0 loss to Carolina RailHawks.
Speaking of his international career, Andres Flores received his first call-up for the El Salvador national football team in March, 2008 in a friendly against Trinidad & Tobago.
Highlighted Team (Curacao):
Curacao national football team made their debut on the international stage back in 1924 under the name of Territory of Curacao national football team. The team recorded a 4-0 win over Aruba in their first ever friendly match and 30 years later the Territory of Curacao became the Netherlands Antilles, the country which included the islands of Bonaire, Aruba, Sint Eustatius, Saba and Sint Maarten as well.
In 2011 Curacao played their first game as an independent country, with the team suffering a 1-0 loss to Dominican Republic. Curacao have yet to book their place at the FIFA World Cup finals, but they made it to the finals of the CFU Carribean Cup on three occasions (1998, 2014, 2017). Speaking of their participation at the CONCACAF Championship, the team won bronze medal at both the 1963 and the 1969 tournaments.
In 1959 Curacao recorded their biggest win, with the team outclassing Puerto Rico 15-0. Stadion Ergilio Hato is the home ground of the Curacao national football team.