USMNT - Gold Cup - Power Rankings
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Power Rankings: How do Concacaf nations rank entering Gold Cup?

Ahead of the Concacaf Gold Cup kicking off on Saturday, here's a special edition of Concacaf Power Rankings. The rankings here only include countries that qualified for the Gold Cup, but Guatemala, French Guiana and Suriname were among the other countries to receive votes from our panel.

Rankings are voted on by MLSsoccer.com editorial staff; words by Alicia Rodriguez.

1

 

BEST FINISH: Won

Mexico have won more titles in the Gold Cup era than any country (seven to the USMNT's six), and they're the favorites here, despite missing a slew of stars. But with Tata Martino at the helm, the voting panel thinks they have an edge on the competition.

2

 

BEST FINISH: Won

The defending champion, the US men's national team enter with a mix of hope and trepidation. Coming off the first two losses of the Gregg Berhalter era, voters are certainly concerned, but they have every chance of matching the number of Gold Cup titles with Mexico, who are themselves looking somewhat vulnerable.



3

 

BEST FINISH: 2nd

Jamaica enter this tournament as darkhorse contenders, and why not? They've reached the finals the last two tournaments, and they thoroughly outplayed the USMNT in a tune-up friendly. The pressure of hosting a group-stage game could get to them, but if they play well, they could surprise Concacaf by winning it all.

4

 

BEST FINISH: 2nd

Costa Rica enter this tournament going through a transitional phase, and are a wild card. The collective strength of the program means they can strike for a win over one of the big countries at any time, but they also have the potential to lay an egg in this edition.

5

 

BEST FINISH: 1st

When was the last time Canada was this high in the reckoning around Concacaf? It's been awhile. Expectations are higher than they've been in decades. But with much promise is a side short on experience overall -- hopefully John Herdman can use his tournament experience to guide them to a good showing.

6

 

BEST FINISH: 2nd

Honduras are another team in the "high potential/high risk" tier coming into the Gold Cup. Their forward corps and goalkeeper are entering their best years, but there are some questions over how well the defense and midfield will perform. Don't be surprised if they push the big countries in the knockout stage.

7

 

BEST FINISH: 2nd

Panama also seem to be in a transitional phase, and a lot of their players seem to be close to their last go-round on the international stage. That said, this is the best generation of Panamanian players yet, and they've proven to be a difficult opponent for the USMNT in years past.

8

 

BEST FINISH: 7th

Haiti leads the group of teams that don't seem to have a shot of winning the Gold Cup, but could spring a surprise along the way. Their group seems to be quite favorable, and a roster based around the world shows the steps they've taken of late. Gone are the days of this squad being a mystery come tourney time.

9

 

BEST FINISH: 3rd

Trinidad & Tobago's roster is mostly based in either the US or T&T. Expect plenty of nerves around the group stage game against the USMNT with the specter of Couva hanging over the Americans, but the voting panel considers the current  T&T group to be in line for a short stint at this Gold Cup.

10

 

BEST FINISH: 6th

El Salvador are coached by former Chicago Fire boss Carlos de los Cobos, and while the program remains in reset mode, there's enough guile to possibly claw and bite their way to a knockout round ticket.

11

 

BEST FINISH: 11th

Curacao return to the Gold Cup with the same coach and much of the same roster, including a few players with high-level European experience. A favorable draw avoiding the two big favorites means they could make waves if they get off to a good start in the group stage.

12

 

BEST FINISH: 6th

Martinique, on the other hand, have recent Gold Cup experience but got a tough draw for the group stage. They seem more likely to potentially swing their group for the other countries than make a run themselves.

13

 

BEST FINISH: 8th

Cuba enter once again as quite an unknown quantity around Concacaf, for primarily geopolitical reasons. That said, they have plenty of experience, and if Martinique and Canada aren't fully ready, could take a result off either one of them, given their track record.

14

 

BEST FINISH: N/A

Bermuda make their debut at the Gold Cup this year, with a squad made up of a mix of mostly Bermuda-based and British-based players. In many ways, they're hoping this kick-starts their program, along with the Concacaf Nations League. Given their draw, they could pick up some points in the group stage, too.

15

 

BEST FINISH: 11th

Nicaragua lean heavily on Real Esteli and Managua players for their roster this Gold Cup, and we've seen before in global soccer that a team with a core of players from the same club can do big things. Coming in, however, Nicaragua seems to be on the outside looking in for the knockouts.

16

 

BEST FINISH: N/A

Guyana have done work to build the program in recent years with players from the diaspora. Under head coach Michael Johnson, they have a loose feeling of playing with house money coming in, but they also got a tough draw for their first Gold Cup, and could face a rude awakening.

Series: 

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