Sat | Feb 25, 2017

We haven't achieved anything yet - Panama coach

Published:Tuesday | January 13, 2015 | 12:00 AM

Livingston Scott and Shayne Fairman, Gleaner Writers

Panama's Under-20 team is still beaming from their 1-0 upset win over the United States (US) in their second Group A match of the CONCACAF Men's Under-20 Championship at the National Stadium on Sunday.

The win put the Panamanians atop the group with maximum six points, two more than Trinidad and Tobago and Guatemala and five ahead of Jamaica and the US. Aruba are pointless at the bottom of the group.

Panama face hosts Jamaica tomorrow in the last of three games at the National Stadium. The game has been labelled a must-win for the home team, while a win for the Central Americans would all but seal their place in the last four.

Before the game

Before the US game, Pipino was on record saying that his team has the quality to go all the way. Even though they are currently top of the group after two matches and their confidence sky high, the coach says they're still a far way from accomplishing anything.

"I'm happy for the players. They are good people, and they deserve this joy," the former San Francisco FC coach told reporters. "I'm happy for them, but we know that we still have not achieved anything. We are aware that we have to keep going, and we will try to recover and rest and put all of our focus on the upcoming match (against Jamaica)."

The US went into the Panama game as favourites, but Pipino said they knew they could win.

Confident in winning

"Before the match, in training, we felt like we could win, but also still respecting a good US team that has players in Europe, in MLS. We knew that if we could have more of the ball, they were going to have more problems.

"We knew that on the wings we could do damage and also be fast in the centre of attack, and it worked out," said Pipino, who became the team's head coach only last year."

He added: "Our defence played a complete game. Our goalkeeper had a great night, so I'm happy we had a very good game. The match was even, but the US looked tired at the end, so I think we were able to tire them out and then get the goal."