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Gold Cup Group A time, TV channel, and how to watch online

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The Gold Cup kicks off with Group A action featuring Canada and Costa Rica vying for supremacy.

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Welcome to Sounder at Heart’s daily Gold Cup coverage. Again this year during the tournament we will have daily posts with information and commentary about the games. The Gold Cup is CONCACAF’s Championship.

This is the final Gold Cup to be held with a 12-team format of three groups of four teams. Starting in 2019, the Gold Cup is expanding to 16 teams. Qualification for the Gold Cup is a long process for some teams and automatic for Canada, the United States and Mexico. Four spots are allocated to the Caribbean decided by the top four finishers from the 2017 Caribbean Cup (Curacao, Jamaica, French Guiana and Martinique). Four spots are allocated to Central America and are decided by the top four finishers in the 2017 Copa Centroamericana (Honduras, Panama, El Salvador and Costa Rica). Three spots are allocated to North America (Canada, United States and Mexico) and the last spot is a playoff between the fifth place team in the Caribbean zone and Central America (Nicaragua defeated Haiti 4-3 on aggregate to claim the last spot).

French Guiana vs. Canada:

Expect to see the full debut of 16-year-old Alphonso Davies for the Canadian national team. Davies was a refugee from the Liberian Civil War that came to Canada at 5 years old and has featured in Canada’s youth national teams before passing his Canadian citizenship test on June 7, 2017. Davies will officially be cap-tied to Canada when he steps on the field during the Gold Cup. The Vancouver Whitecaps product was the second youngest player to ever play in MLS, behind Fredy Adu, and looks to be a budding star for the Whitecaps. Davies will be looking to break Canada’s six-match scoreless run in the Gold Cup.

Cyle Larin is not with the Canadian national team due to the fallout from his recent DUI arrest. Larin is expected to be added to the roster during the knockout stages should Canada advance from the group.

French Guiana featured 37-year-old Florent Malouda in their Caribbean Cup qualification run. Malouda, who was born in Cayenne, French Guiana, has represented France 80 times at the senior level and even started the 2006 World Cup Final. But due to vagaries of CONCACAF and FIFA rules, Malouda was eligible to play for French Guiana in that tournament because it is a non-FIFA nation in World Cup qualifying, but CONCACAF uses FIFA eligibility criteria for the Gold Cup and has deemed Malouda ineligible for the Gold Cup. French Guiana has added Malouda to their 23-man roster and it is unclear if they intend for the former Chelsea and Lyon star to play, thus deeming their matches a forfeit.

Honduras vs. Costa Rica:

With Canada’s historic struggles at the Gold Cup and a French Guiana team making it’s Gold Cup debut, this looks to be the battle for Group A supremacy.

Honduras currently sit fifth out of six teams in CONCACAF’s final World Cup Qualifying group, the Hex. With the top three teams making the World Cup, they will be hoping to use a successful run at the Gold Cup to jump start their World Cup campaign. Look for MLS veterans Maynor Figueroa (FC Dallas) and a trio from the Houston Dynamo of Boniek Garcia, Alberth Elis and Romell Quioto to lead the team.

Costa Rica sit second in the Hex and look likely to take one of the three automatic World Cup spots. Costa Rica were CONCACAF’s best team in the most recent World Cup. They beat Uruguay and Italy and drew England in the group stages, and advanced to the quarterfinals by eliminating Greece in a shoot-out, before losing one step away from the semi-finals in a shoot-out with the Netherlands.

The Gold Cup era of CONCACAF championships started in 1991. Costa Rica has yet to win a title. The closest they came was a final loss in 2002 to the USA.

From a Sounders Point of View:

No Seattle Sounders in action today. Overall Jordan Morris, Christian Roldan (both USMNT) and Jordy Delem (Martinique) are current Sounder taking part in the tournament. Former Sounders Kevin Parsemain (Martinique) and Mario Martinez (Honduras) figure to play important roles for their teams.

National TV Listings:

French Guiana v Canada

Date/Time: Friday, 4:00 PM

Location: Red Bull Arena, Harrison, New Jersey

TV: FS2 & Univision Deportes

Streaming: Fox Sports Go & Univision Deportes

Honduras v Costa Rica

Date/Time: Friday, 6:30 PM

Location: Red Bull Arena, Harrison, New Jersey

TV: FS2 UniMas & Univision Deportes

Streaming: Fox Sports Go & Univision Deportes

This is your Sounder at Heart Gold Cup gamethread. Watch with us.