Shea's quick goal gives U.S. 1-0 victory over Panama in Gold Cup final

  • Article by: NANCY ARMOUR , AP National Writer
  • Updated: July 28, 2013 - 9:18 PM

The United States ran its winning streak to 11 matches and won the Gold Cup final in the process.

hide

The United States' Brek Shea, right, celebrated with teammates after scoring the only goal in a 1-0 victory over Panama in the CONCACAF Gold Cup final on Sunday in Chicago.

Photo: Nam Y. Huh, Associated Press

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

CHICAGO — Brek Shea sure knows how to make an entrance.

Just 42 seconds after coming into the game as a substitute Sunday, Shea pounced after Landon Donovan whiffed a shot and poked the ball into the net. His goal in the 69th minute gave the United States a 1-0 victory over Panama and the CONCACAF Gold Cup title. It is the fifth Gold Cup title for the Americans, but their first since 2007. It also is the first international title as a coach for Jurgen Klinsmann, who won the 1990 World Cup and 1996 European Championship with Germany.

"It doesn't matter who scored today," Shea said. "We won."

The U.S. is doing a lot of that lately.

This was the 11th straight victory for the Americans, four more than their previous record, and they likely will leapfrog Mexico as the best team from the North and Central America and Caribbean region when the next FIFA rankings come out Aug. 8.

When the final whistle sounded, the Americans on the field began celebrating while the rest of the team raced off the bench. Several players jumped up and down, and hugs and high-fives were exchanged. Klinsmann, who watched the game from a luxury box after being suspended for his tirade over the officiating in the semifinal, quickly made his way down to the field, pumping his fists in the air as he walked.

"They wanted to send out a signal that they are the best group in CONCACAF, and they are," Klinsmann said. "For today."

But their performance in this tournament is likely to stay with the Americans for a while. At least until the next round of World Cup qualifying in September. Not only did they outscore opponents 20-4 in the tournament — no other team had more than 11 goals — but they showed they are deeper than they've ever been, with one young player after another stepping up.

And one veteran, too.

Despite his big whiff, Donovan was selected the tournament MVP. He finished with five goals and seven assists, a particularly impressive performance considering it followed a four-month sabbatical over the winter that cost him his place on the national team.

"In terms of just having fun, it's up there," Donovan said. "I'm just enjoying being part of it, I really am."

Though Klinsmann picks his roster based on form, not reputation, he acknowledged it would be almost impossible to leave Donovan off the roster for the next round of qualifying.

"He deserves every compliment for this tournament," Klinsmann said.

The only disappointment for the Americans was the loss of Stuart Holden with another right knee injury. Holden sprained his knee early in the first half, and while he will have further tests, Klinsmann said after the game that "it's not looking good."

"We are very, very sad for him," Klinsmann said. "We are very concerned about Stuey's situation. It looks like a very serious knee injury."

While most expected a Mexico-US final, Panama had other ideas, upsetting El Tri twice on the strength of its stingy defense. Panama was just as dogged against the Americans early, crowding Donovan and Eddie Johnson and not giving the U.S. any space.

But rather than taking wild shots or trying to force things, the Americans stayed patient.

"At times it may have been a little slow or been going back and forth, but we stuck to the game plan," Besler said.

And as the game went on, the Americans began to break Panama down. They finished with three shots on goal and another eight that were off target — six in the second half alone. Their best chance came in the 56th minute, DaMarcus Beasley chipped a ball into Donovan, who was in front of the goal at the near post. Donovan got his head on the ball, but not at the angle he wanted and it flew wide of the net. As the crowd groaned, Donovan threw back his head and Beasley swatted the red flag in the corner.

"We were all hopeful, we all wanted to win," Panama coach Julio Dely Valdez said. "But we all go away feeling we gave it our all. I said I wanted to walk away from the Gold Cup feeling good, and I do."

Shea replaced Joe Corona in the 68th minute, just as the Americans were pressing forward again. Alejandro Bedoya got the ball on his left foot and crossed to Donovan, who took a mighty swing — and missed. But it was enough to throw goalkeeper Jaime Pendeo off, and when the ball rolled past Panama's Roberto Chen and on toward the net, Shea was ready. Parked inches from the goal line, Shea stuck out his left foot and tapped the ball into the net for his second international goal.

"I was there just to put it away," he said.

Asked if it was the quickest goal he'd ever had or the closest, Shea replied, "Easiest."

The Americans had a chance to double the lead in the 84th minute when Shea fed a wide-open Eddie Johnson 2 yards from the goal. But Johnson couldn't finish it, sending the ball flying over the cross bar.

But it didn't matter as Panama never threatened.

"I think they were rewarded today for the fantastic Gold Cup they played," Klinsmann said. "They put all their energy in that they had. They should be very, very proud of themselves."

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Detroit 51 3rd Qtr 1:57
Philadelphia 66
Portland 62 3rd Qtr 3:33
Cleveland 69
Sacramento 54 3rd Qtr
Toronto 54
Boston 27 2nd Qtr 9:20
Minnesota 34
Dallas 25 2nd Qtr 10:43
Houston 26
Denver 32 2nd Qtr 10:07
New Orleans 19
Brooklyn 27 2nd Qtr
Atlanta 30
Oklahoma City 21 2nd Qtr 10:25
New York 22
Charlotte 7:30 PM
San Antonio
LA Clippers 8:00 PM
Utah
Washington 9:30 PM
Phoenix
Toronto 0 2nd Prd 17:22
New Jersey 0
Pittsburgh 0 1st Prd 4:27
Washington 1
Chicago 9:30 PM
Los Angeles
Temple 70 2nd Half 6:30
UCF 38
Winthrop 54 2nd Half 7:14
Coastal Carolina 57
Lafayette 42 2nd Half 10:00
Colgate 45
Northeastern 45 2nd Half 4:44
Drexel 49
Wake Forest 53 2nd Half 8:36
Florida State 50
Rhode Island 47 2nd Half 9:20
Fordham 50
Delaware 73 2nd Half 2:53
James Madison 75
South Carolina 51 2nd Half 6:27
LSU 48
New Hampshire 50 2nd Half 4:55
Maine 39
Seton Hall 67 2nd Half 5:52
Marquette 52
Binghamton 33 2nd Half 13:00
UMBC 24
American Univ 46 2nd Half 4:23
Navy 62
Elon 45 2nd Half 8:43
UNC-Wilmington 73
Wright State 49 2nd Half 5:37
Oakland 46
Minnesota 48 2nd Half 5:08
Penn State 53
Duquesne 41 2nd Half 7:30
Richmond 72
SMU 56 2nd Half 5:30
South Florida 47
Hartford 48 2nd Half 9:25
Stony Brook 42
Albany 31 2nd Half 8:00
Vermont 24
Hofstra 60 2nd Half 7:16
William & Mary 75
UNC-Asheville 46 2nd Half 12:00
Longwood 41
Radford 45 2nd Half
Char Southern 35
Holy Cross 0 Postponed
Loyola-Maryland 0
Duke 46 2nd Half 16:49
Notre Dame 47
Texas Tech 17 2nd Half 15:38
Oklahoma 53
Oregon State 18 1st Half 3:48
Arizona State 35
Morehead State 29 1st Half 3:47
Austin Peay 27
Drake 36 1st Half 3:59
Bradley 24
Lehigh 17 1st Half 6:11
Bucknell 13
Rice 15 1st Half 3:50
Houston 20
Missouri State 17 1st Half 5:32
Illinois State 16
Loyola-Chicago 12 1st Half 7:50
Wichita State 14
Nebraska Omaha 23 1st Half 6:20
South Dakota St 31
Northern Iowa 21 1st Half 3:17
Southern Ill 22
Louisville 8:00 PM
Boston College
St Johns 8:00 PM
Creighton
East Carolina 8:00 PM
Memphis
Georgia Tech 8:00 PM
Miami-Florida
Miss State 8:00 PM
Ole Miss
Clemson 8:00 PM
NC State
Indiana 8:00 PM
Purdue
Kansas 8:00 PM
TCU
Oregon 9:00 PM
Arizona
Air Force 9:00 PM
San Jose St
Stanford 10:00 PM
Washington
Rider 56 FINAL
Siena 49
Dayton 76 FINAL
Richmond 62
Eastern Kentucky 53 FINAL
Jacksonville St 73
Saint Josephs 0 Postponed
Saint Louis 0
Fordham 66 FINAL
Davidson 45
UMBC 58 2nd Half 7:05
Binghamton 44
Akron 53 2nd Half 5:19
Ohio U 60
Ball State 67 2nd Half 4:41
Miami-Ohio 49
Memphis 49 2nd Half 4:50
Cincinnati 39
East Carolina 23 2nd Half 9:51
(2) Connecticut 65
Murray State 57 2nd Half 0:48
Eastern Illinois 73
Kent State 58 2nd Half 1:47
Central Michigan 63
UT Martin 62 2nd Half 4:21
Tennessee St 50
Eastern Michigan 50 2nd Half 5:32
Western Mich 74
Bucknell 59 2nd Half 0:22
Lehigh 76
Indiana 49 2nd Half 3:44
Michigan State 72
Colgate 54 2nd Half 2:59
Lafayette 51
Duquesne 64 2nd Half 5:30
St Bonaventure 54
George Mason 49 2nd Half 5:57
VA Commonwealth 58
Detroit 55 2nd Half 0:49
Youngstown St 53
Army 0 Postponed
Boston U 0
Loyola-Maryland 0 Postponed
Holy Cross 0
SMU 24 1st Half 5:12
Tulsa 28
Oklahoma St 15 1st Half 3:58
Kansas State 18
West Virginia 19 1st Half 4:38
Texas Tech 24
Denver 37 1st Half 3:15
South Dakota 35
Northwestern St 21 1st Half 0:34
Central Arkansas 26
Austin Peay 28 1st Half 1:18
SIU-Edwardsville 44
Kansas 18 1st Half 4:08
Iowa State 17
Bowling Green 12 1st Half 4:27
Northern Ill 27
Penn State 27 1st Half 3:46
Minnesota 27
San Jose St 8:00 PM
Air Force
Boise State 8:00 PM
Colorado State
Utah State 8:00 PM
Wyoming
San Diego State 9:00 PM
Fresno State
Nevada 9:00 PM
UNLV

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: What chance does the Wild have of making the playoffs?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close