6 Bold Predictions for the 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup

By Ben Morris in Soccer
| June 21, 2021 6:14 am PDT

With the 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup right around the corner, it’s about time I made some Gold Cup predictions. The tournament gets underway on July 10, so we don’t have long to wait.

As you would expect, Mexico heads into this summer’s competition as the bookmakers’ favorite. After all, the CONCACAF kings have won eight of the previous 14 Gold Cups.

When it comes to making regular predictions for the 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup, backing the Mexicans to lift the trophy makes perfect sense. But in this post, I share my bold Gold Cup predictions for 2021 and look at things from a different angle.

Will Costa Rica fall at the first hurdle? Can Jonathan David claim back-to-back Golden Boots? And how far will Curaçao go under Guus Hiddink?

Here are my six bold predictions for the 2021 Gold Cup.

Jonathan David Wins the Golden Boot (Again)

 Jonathan David was just 19 when he finished as the top goalscorer at the 2019 Gold Cup. He may have only turned 21 in January, but he is a far better player now than he was two years ago.

Since swapping Belgium for France, the prolific forward has taken his game to another level. During his debut campaign with Lille, he netted 13 goals in 29 Ligue 1 starts – helping his club to secure the top-flight title.

TOP GOALSCORERS FOR LILLE (2020/21 SEASON)
Player Goals (All Competitions)
Burak Yilmaz 18
Yusuf Yazici 14
Jonathan David 13
Jonathan Bamba 7
Jonathan Ikone 7

David’s international record speaks for itself. The 21-year-old has bagged a remarkable 15 goals in 15 matches for Canada, including six goals in four outings at the last Gold Cup.

Alongside the US, Martinique, and a yet-to-be-confirmed playoff winner, Canada won’t find life easy in Group B. However, if David picks up where he left off last time around, he could find himself claiming a second straight Golden Boot.

Undoubtedly one of the best young Canadian soccer players, I simply had to include David among my bold predictions for the 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup.

Curaçao Will Go Further Than You Think

The Gold Cup hasn’t always been the most competitive international soccer tournament on the planet. I mean, nations like Mexico and the US have dominated the competition over the years – giving the smaller countries little chance of success.

Now, I’m not saying that Curaçao is going to win the whole thing this summer; that would be an extremely brave CONCACAF Gold Cup prediction. But I can see the Lesser Antilles islanders surprising a few people.

Coached by the legendary Guus Hiddink, Curaçao is on the rise. The former Netherlands, South Korea, Australia, Russia, and Turkey manager has vast experience on the international stage – and he has also coached European powerhouse like Real Madrid and Chelsea.

Of course, Mexico will almost certainly top Group A. But if Hiddink’s men can pick up positive results against the other teams in the group, there is no reason why they can’t advance to the knockout phase.

Curaçao has made a strong start to World Cup qualifying, picking up three wins and a draw so far. Following an 8-0 victory over the British Virgin Islands, the Caribbean nation will be brimming with confidence.

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Tyler Adams Will Be Named Player of the Tournament

Can the USMNT win the 2026 FIFA World Cup? Well, the current crop of American players is arguably the best the country has ever produced – and Tyler Adams is one of the poster boys.

A product of the New York Red Bulls academy, Adams joined German giant RB Leipzig in 2019. Since then, the versatile midfielder has become a household name both in the States and Europe.

Having made his USMNT debut when he was just 18, Adams already has 14 international caps under his belt. Now 22, the ex-Red Bull has become a pivotal component of Gregg Berhalter’s side and looks set to play a key role at the upcoming tournament.

He even captained his country in a recent match against Costa Rica.

Naturally, Mexico is the bookmakers’ favorite to lift the trophy. But it feels like the gap between the Mexicans and the Americans is smaller now that it has ever been.

Guys like Christian Pulisic (Chelsea), Giovanni Reyna (Borussia Dortmund), and Sergiño Dest (Barcelona) have the ability to light up the Gold Cup. But if Adams can fulfill his potential this summer, I wouldn’t be shocked if he clinched the Golden Ball.

Jamaica Wins Group C and Reaches the Semi-Finals

It’s safe to say that Jamaica has endured plenty of Gold Cup disappointment over the years. Although they reached the final in 2015 and 2017, the Reggae Boys have never been able to get their hands on the trophy.

However, I can see Theodore Whitmore’s men dominating their group and reaching the latter stages of the tournament this time around.

Led by captain and goalkeeper Andre Blake, Jamaica has developed a competitive roster in recent times. The inclusion of English-born players such as Andre Gray (Watford) and Ethan Pinnock (Brentford) has given the squad a huge boost, while regulars like Leon Bailey (Bayer Leverkusen) need no introduction.

The Reggae Boys have been drawn in favorable group this year, alongside Costa Rica and Suriname. The playoff winner heading into Group C shouldn’t cause Jamaica any problems.

With a talented squad and an impressive run of results behind them, I’m backing Whitmore’s men to win Group C and reach the last four. Who knows? They could even make it to the final.

JAMAICA’S RECENT GOLD CUP FINISHES
Year Finish
2015 Runners-up
2017 Runners-up
2019 Fourth place

Costa Rica Will Fail to Qualify for the Knockouts

The next of my bold predictions for the 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup concerns Costa Rica.

We all know that Los Ticos are one of the kings of the CONCACAF region. Not only have they qualified for four of the last five World Cups, but they have also won three Gold Cups. When you consider that record, they should do well at the upcoming tournament.

But there is no hiding from the fact that Los Ticos have failed to win any of their previous 11 matches (three wins, eight draws). Worse still, they have only managed to register one victory in their last 17 outings!

Oh, and did I mention that Costa Rica parted ways with head coach Ronald Gonzalez following a recent 4-0 thrashing at the hands of the US?

You get the picture, right? Costa Rican soccer is in a real mess. It wouldn’t be a massive surprise if CONCACAF’s fourth-highest ranked nation failed to reach the quarter-finals.

USA Defeats Mexico to Lift the Trophy

As the list below shows, the US has suffered multiple Gold Cup final losses to Mexico since 1993. In fact, the two nations have met in six of the previous 14 showpieces – and the Mexicans have won on five occasions.

  • 1993: Mexico 4-0 United States
  • 1998: Mexico 1-0 United States
  • 2007: United States 1-0 Mexico
  • 2009: Mexico 5-0 United States
  • 2011: Mexico 4-2 United States
  • 2019: Mexico 1-0 United States

Still, something just feels different about this current USMNT roster. Never before have we seen so many world-class players in one USA squad, so I’m backing Berhalter’s men to bring it home.

When I first considered making some bold predictions for the 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup, I immediately thought about the US lifting the trophy. Given that Mexico has registered some iffy results recently, I’m sticking with my prediction.

Let’s not forget that Berhalter’s side recently beat Mexico in the inaugural CONCACAF Nations League final, too. Pulisic’s extra-time penalty handed the States a dramatic victory on earlier this month, having come from behind on two occasions.

Wrapping Things Up

That concludes my bold 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup predictions.

Of course, it is highly unlikely that all six of my predictions for the Gold Cup will come to fruition. But it’s always fun to speculate, right?

With the tournament set to commence on July 10, you should also be thinking about making your 2021 Gold Cup predictions. Thankfully, we can help you with that.

Our CONCACAF Gold Cup betting guide contains expert tips and tons of useful information. So, if you need some help with your 2021 Gold Cup bets, make sure you head to that page.

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