On Thursday El Salvador could see that the iron was hot early, and they took advantage with two goals before the half-hour mark.
Gerson Mayen and Rodolfo Zelaya came through with almost back-to-back goals taking advantage of open looks on goal inside the penalty area. The win over Curacao in Denver, Colorado could go a long way toward getting the Cuscatlecos out of Group C and into the knockout stage of the tournament.
Curacao had a penalty kick opportunity that they failed to convert in the first half, with Derby Carillo making the save easily to preserve the clean sheet.
- 21' - SLV - Gerson Mayen Watch
- 24' - SLV - Rodolfo Zelaya Watch
- CONCACAF Man of the Match: Rodolfo Zelaya
- STARTING OFF HOT: Rodolfo Zelaya was involved in both El Salvador goals, as the forward used his speed to give the Curacao back line fits. On his goal, he was able to create enough space off his marker to chest down a long ball, dribble into the penalty area, and shoot without much pressure. His assist was nice as well, as he was open enough to take his time and pick out a target.
- SLOW SECOND HALF: There was concern about El Salvador’s ability to close out a game in the second half, but despite some pressure from decent Curacao looks the pace of the game was dictated by the winning side. It’s a different game if the first-half penalty goes in, but there was no less attack from El Salvador in the second half.
- JAMAICAN ME THIRSTY: The locker room will be watching the late game between Mexico and Jamaica closely, as that result will determine much of El Salvador’s fate. The Cuscatlecos have a shot at second place now, but an upset would make Group C wide open going into Sunday.
El Salvador (4-2,3,1 left to right): #18 Derby Carillo - #13 Alexander Larin, #4 Henry Romero, #5 Ivan Mancia, #21 Bryan Tamacas - #12 Narciso Orellana, #7 Darwin Ceren - #8 Dennis Pineda, #9 Nelson Bonilla, #10 Gerson Mayen - #11 Rodolfo Zelaya
Curacao (4,2,3,1 left to right): #1 Eloy Room - #17 Gillian Justiana, #5 Quentin Jakoba, #4 Darryl Lachman, #13 Jurien Gaari - #7 Leandro Bacuna, #2 Dustley Mulder - #8 Jarchinio Antonia, #18 Elson Hooi, #11 Gevaro Nepomuceno - #19 Rangelo Janga
- SLV: Sunday, July 16th - vs. Jamaica (6:00 pm ET | FS2 & UDN, TSN GO)
- CUW: Sunday, July 16th - vs. Mexico (8:30 pm ET | FS1 & Univision, TSN GO)