VIDEO: Stoke City star scores table-topping goal in Gold Cup

Brek Shea grabbed the winning goal for USA vs Costa Rica at the CONCACAF Gold Cup.

In terms of major international football competitions it is probably fair to say that the CONCACAF Gold Cup does not appear high on your agenda.

The competition sees the best of the best from Central and North America battle it out to be crowned champions of the region.

This summer’s event is being hosted by the United States of America and the USMNT were therefore installed as the pre-tournament favourites to win the competition and they faced their toughest match so far last night.

And there was Premier League interest in last night’s fixture between the USA and Costa Rica; including in the form of the goalscorer in a 1-0 victory for the States.

While many big names such as Brad Guzan, Tim Howard, Clint Dempsey and Jozy Altidore may have stayed at home for the host nation Costa Rica were equally weakened with the likes of Fulham’s Bryan Ruiz and Arsenal’s Joel Campbell not making the trip.

The fixture between the pair was practically a straight-shoot-out for top spot in Group C ahead of Cuba and Belize; who both teams had already disposed of with relative ease.

A draw would have seen USA through anyway due to them thrashing Belize 6-1 on match-day one but USA want to win the competition on home soil at a canter and winning all three group games was considered a tournament prerequisite.

And that is exactly what they did; with a Stoke City player bagging the winning goal after 82 minutes.

While Kenywne Jones has bagged a couple for Trinidad and Tobago in the tournament it looks as though Brek Shea decided to show him he can also find the back of the net.

The substitute raced clear on the counter attack to slide the ball past the onrushing keeper with his left foot to maintain the nation’s 100% record and top the table.

USA now face El Salvador in the quarter-finals as they continue their mission to be crowned the best team in their region.

Whether Brek Shea will get a chance to shine again depends on the decisions of coach Jurgen Klinsmann; but he did himself no harm with this goal…

image: © ronnie macdonald

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