- Unbeaten United States hosts last-place Jamaica on Thursday, October 7th in CONCACAF World Cup qualifier
- Match will begin latest round of games, with teams playing three games in seven days
- Read on for betting odds, a full preview and the best bet for this CONCACAF World Cup qualifying match
While it can be argued that the United States sputtered in their first two qualifying games before finally bursting into life in the second half of its 4-1 over Honduras last time out, Jamaica has yet to get out of first gear. With a number of players unable to leave their club teams in Britain to travel to certain countries in the region because of COVID-19, the Reggae Boyz had to make do and fell to one draw and two defeats in their first pair of games as a result.
Sitting in last place in the final octagonal World Cup qualifying group, Jamaica now travels to Austin, Texas, to meet the United States for the first time since last summer’s Gold Cup quarterfinal, which was also held in Texas. The US won 1-0 on that occasion.
United States vs Jamaica Odds
|USA vs Jamaica||USA -1.5 (+100) | JAM +1 (-120)||USA -340 | JAM +800
|Ov 2.5 (-125) | Un 2.5 (+100)|
Odds as of October 7th at DraftKings
USA Leans On Pepi Rally
Down 0-1 at halftime against Honduras and looking down the barrel of a third straight qualifying game without a win, the US turned the game and possibly its campaign around in the second half on the boot of debutant Ricardo Pepi.Advertising Disclosure
The FC Dallas striker assisted on two goals and scored the winner in the 4-1 win, and with a host of European clubs chasing his signature, Pepi will enter his second appearance for the US national team riding high.
Interesting stuff on Ricardo Pepi from The Athletic.
Ajax are in 'the final stages of scouting' him — Bayern are interested as well. They believed he had what it takes to go pro three years ago when he trained there. They believe he fits their system. Compared to Edin Dzeko. pic.twitter.com/UBOL5KvrAD
— USMNT Only (@usmntonly) October 6, 2021
For a team that had only scored one goal in 228 minutes before Antonee Robinson broke through against Honduras, the boost of offense that Pepi provides could hardly come at a better time for Gregg Berhalter’s men.
The United States and Jamaica will be meeting for the third time already this year when they lock horns on Thursday evening. The Stars and Stripes won 4-1 in a friendly back in March, played in Austria of all places, before the US took a late 1-0 win in their Gold Cup quarterfinal, courtesy of Matthew Hoppe’s 83rd-minute goal.
However, the US has never lost to Jamaica at home in World Cup qualifying, going 4-0-2 against the Reggae Boyz over the years, and going 5-1-6 in total in World Cup qualifying. In this, their 30th ever meeting, the US holds an 18-3-8 all-time record.
Jamaica In Tough
The Reggae Boyz were facing a tough mountain to climb in their opening three games. Eight of the team’s players currently ply their trade in England, and as a result of the coronavirus travel rules, were unable to fly to away games in Mexico and Costa Rica.
MICHAIL ANTONIO has pulled out of the Jamaica squad for three qualifiers due to logistical problems.
The news will be a welcome boost for boss David Moyes, who has concerns about the effect of travelling across the Atlantic would have on Michail who has been plagued by injury dg pic.twitter.com/Xv9bUYxAwr
— David Gold (@davidgold) October 7, 2021
Chief among those missing will be the Premier League’s third-leading scorer, West Ham striker Michail Antonio, who, despite still awaiting his first goal for Jamaica, announced that he would not be making the trip to play for his parents’ birth country. In addition, the other EPL-based Jamaica player, Leon Bailey of Aston Villa, will miss this game through injury.
To make matters worse, Jamaica has conceded the first goal in the last six games that it has played in all competitions.
USA vs Jamaica World Cup Qualifying Stats
The USA will also be missing a handful of regulars. Christian Pulisic, Giovanni Reyna and defender John Brooks are all out with injuries, while Tim Ream has withdrawn due to family reasons.
During today's pre-match press conference, head coach Gregg Berhalter confirmed that Weston McKennie will start for the #USMNT vs. 🇯🇲 on Thursday. #USAvJAM #OnlyForward #SoloPalate 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/vhFGscugdR
— U.S. Soccer MNT (@USMNT) October 6, 2021
But at least head coach Gregg Berhalter will have some consistency brought over from the last World Cup games in September, with 17 of his squad having also featured in that camp. That includes Juventus midfielder Weston McKennie, who was sent home from the last camp after breaking COVID protocol.
Best bet: USA -1.5 (+100)Advertising Disclosure