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Group G - Panama Team Review

Started by FastGoal, Jun 05, 2018, 01:06 PM

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FastGoal

Panama


FIFA World Ranking: 55
Qualifying Average Goals Per Match: 1.00
Qualifying Average Goals Against Per Match: 0.94
Qualifying Top Scorer: Abdiel Arroyo, Roman Torres, Luis Tejada, Gabriel Torres and Blas Perez (2)
World Cup Best Performance: First Appearance

Group G Opponents: Belgium, England and Tunisia


The Manager: Hernan Dario Gomez
Vastly experienced as a manager on the international stage, Colombian Gomez has previously led both his home nation and Ecuador to the World Cup Finals. Guiding lowly Panama to the first finals in their history though may well be his finest achievement to date. So pleased was the President  of Panam with the unexpected qualification that he made the next day a national holiday. Already a national hero, should Gomez mastermind a way out of this group, it would be no surprise should there be a statue erected in his honour. Gomez has proved adaptable in the past but is likely to stick with the hard running 4-4-2 formation which got his side here in the first place.


The Squad:
Just about the least glamourous of all the squads in the competition, there's not a star name to be found here. The vast majority of the players are drawn from the North American leagues, with only four plying their trade in Europe. The US Major League is about as high profile as it gets when it comes to where these players play their club football.

Dinamo Bucharest keeper Jaime Penedo brings plenty of experience in goal and in general it is at the back where the strength of this team lies. Five of the defenders called up hail from MLS clubs and the back four seems to have gelled particularly well under Gomez.

A veteran of 143 caps now, Gabriel Gómez won't be seen too often in the opposition half, but does effectively patrol in front of the back four, providing an additional layer of defence.

Scoring goals is likely to be the area in which the squad struggles, with no player managing to strike more than twice in qualifying. Blaz Pérez and Luis Tejada are the joint top scorers in the squad with 43 goals apiece, but have a combined age of 73 now and likely wont be scaring too many opposition defenders with their pace.


Star Man: Román Torres
Together with captain Felipe Baloy, Torres leads and organises from the heart of the defence. Good in the air and tough in the tackle, Torres has also proven to be a goal threat at the other end of the pitch, particularly from set pieces. Scorer of the goal which dramatically secured Panama's qualification for the finals, he will be just about the first name on the team sheet in Russia.


Outlook:
Likely to put up a fight in each of their games, the fact remains that Panama only just managed to escape one of the weaker qualification sections and face a far tougher test here. Likely to be on the back foot throughout the majority of their matches, they may be tough to breakdown but ultimately don't look to possess sufficient quality to pose enough of a threat at the other end of the pitch.


Group G Prediction: 4th


FastGoal

Panama


FIFA World Ranking: 55
Qualifying Average Goals Per Match: 1.00
Qualifying Average Goals Against Per Match: 0.94
Qualifying Top Scorer: Abdiel Arroyo, Roman Torres, Luis Tejada, Gabriel Torres and Blas Perez (2)
World Cup Best Performance: First Appearance

Group G Opponents: Belgium, England and Tunisia


The Manager: Hernan Dario Gomez
Vastly experienced as a manager on the international stage, Colombian Gomez has previously led both his home nation and Ecuador to the World Cup Finals. Guiding lowly Panama to the first finals in their history though may well be his finest achievement to date. So pleased was the President  of Panam with the unexpected qualification that he made the next day a national holiday. Already a national hero, should Gomez mastermind a way out of this group, it would be no surprise should there be a statue erected in his honour. Gomez has proved adaptable in the past but is likely to stick with the hard running 4-4-2 formation which got his side here in the first place.


The Squad:
Just about the least glamourous of all the squads in the competition, there's not a star name to be found here. The vast majority of the players are drawn from the North American leagues, with only four plying their trade in Europe. The US Major League is about as high profile as it gets when it comes to where these players play their club football.

Dinamo Bucharest keeper Jaime Penedo brings plenty of experience in goal and in general it is at the back where the strength of this team lies. Five of the defenders called up hail from MLS clubs and the back four seems to have gelled particularly well under Gomez.

A veteran of 143 caps now, Gabriel Gómez won't be seen too often in the opposition half, but does effectively patrol in front of the back four, providing an additional layer of defence.

Scoring goals is likely to be the area in which the squad struggles, with no player managing to strike more than twice in qualifying. Blaz Pérez and Luis Tejada are the joint top scorers in the squad with 43 goals apiece, but have a combined age of 73 now and likely wont be scaring too many opposition defenders with their pace.


Star Man: Román Torres
Together with captain Felipe Baloy, Torres leads and organises from the heart of the defence. Good in the air and tough in the tackle, Torres has also proven to be a goal threat at the other end of the pitch, particularly from set pieces. Scorer of the goal which dramatically secured Panama's qualification for the finals, he will be just about the first name on the team sheet in Russia.


Outlook:
Likely to put up a fight in each of their games, the fact remains that Panama only just managed to escape one of the weaker qualification sections and face a far tougher test here. Likely to be on the back foot throughout the majority of their matches, they may be tough to breakdown but ultimately don't look to possess sufficient quality to pose enough of a threat at the other end of the pitch.


Group G Prediction: 4th


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