By Samindra Kunti in New Jersey
July 4 – Guadeloupe coach Jocelyn Angloma says his team have nothing to fear ahead of a crunch clash against Guatemala and are already writing history with the winner guaranteed a spot in the quarter-finals.
Group C has been a wildly chaotic, with 2026 World Cup hosts Canada sitting in third place behind both Angloma’s charges and Los Chapines, with four points apiece, but the North Americans are hot favourites to defeat a depleted Cuba to move to five points, which makes Guadeloupe – Guatemala a tournament-defining contest.
“We don’t need to be afraid, we played unafraid against Canada, that team is also stronger than us,” said Angloma at a news conference. “But we deeply believe in ourselves. We are always the underdog, and the team is very proud of what they have done so far.”
Guadeloupe have enjoyed an outstanding tournament with a dazzling 4-1 win over Cuba, starring brilliant goals from both Matthias Phaeton and Anthony Baron. In their opening match, they drew 2-2 with Canada, and so after a win and a draw they are on the cusp of qualification for the last eight for the first time since 2009. Their opponents have not reached the knockout phase since 2011.
“Guatemala have the bulk of the pressure,” said Angloma. “We know where we have come from. We will do everything to qualify but the truth is it is a very difficult task. The players are writing pages of history, they are living great moments and I hope this going to continue.”
Angloma rates Guatemala higher than when the two teams met in the qualifiers for the 2021 Gold Cup when the Central American team eliminated Guadeloupe from the penalty spot. “It’s a strong team, with high-level players,” explained Angloma. “They have been impactful, but it is not a reason to be fearful.”
“We have been level-headed and, like I said, we have confidence in ourselves. The players have grown throughout these matches.”
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