The two group-stage matches in the CONCACAF Gold Cup scheduled to be played in Houston are just 50 days away.
The doubleheader, which features the national teams of Costa Rica and Canada squaring off at 6:30 p.m. CDT followed by Honduras and French Guiana at 9:00 p.m. CDT, is set for Tuesday, July 11 at BBVA Compass Stadium.
The Houston matches will be the pivotal second game of the group stage for all four teams in Group A. They open group play on July 7 at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J. The second game in group play is vital, as it provides an opportunity for teams to secure their spot in the elimination rounds if they won their first match, or keep their tournament hopes alive if they dropped the opener.
Tickets for the doubleheader include admission to both matches, and prices start at $33. Tickets are available for purchase online at BBVACompassStadium.com, by phone at 713-547-3000 or in person at the BBVA Compass Stadium box office (open Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.).
Honduras headlines the group, and may be led by as many as four Houston Dynamo players, including forwards Romell Quioto and Alberth Elis. The duo, each in their first season with the Dynamo, have combined for nine goals and three assists already this year. Longtime Dynamo midfielder and Honduran legend Boniek García along with Dynamo winger José Escalante may also be called in to the team.
Costa Rica has been one of the most consistent sides in recent Gold Cup history, having advanced to at least the quarterfinals in every tournament since 2005. Los Ticos are led by the goalscoring duo of forwards Bryan Ruiz and Joel Campbell, both of whom play for Sporting CP in Portugal. Major League Soccer fans will also recognize midfielders Christian Bolaños and David Guzmán of Vancouver and Portland, respectively.
Canada will feature arguably the brightest young striker in Major League Soccer, Orlando City SC forward Cyle Larin. Larin has terrorized MLS defenses to the tune of 38 goals in the last two-plus seasons. Larin is joined up front by Toronto FC forward Tosaint Ricketts, whose 15 goals for Les Rouges are the fifth-most in Canadian history.
French Guiana will be making its Gold Cup debut after qualifying for the first time. Representing a nation of just over 250,000 people, the team played its way into the Gold Cup through its performance in the 2016-17 Caribbean Cup. Two years ago, the French Guianese missed out on a Gold Cup berth after they fell 4-3 on aggregate to Honduras in a two-game playoff. They will have an opportunity for revenge on July 11 in Houston.