KINGSTON, Jamaica – Nelson Bonilla came up with the lone goal to help El Salvador defeat Curacao 1-0 in the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup Group C opener on Monday night at the Independence Park Stadium in Kingston, Jamaica.
Both teams began the match with a conservative approach and proceeded to open their attacks as the first half went on.
Curacao GK Eloy Room was called upon in the 28th minute to stop an attempt on goal by El Salvador’s Jonathan Jimenez.
On the opposing side, El Salvador GK Henry Hernandez would be asked to do the same one minute later.
Things were looking to be headed for a scoreless first half when El Salvador found Curacao vulnerable right before the half. An Oscar Ceren pass found its way inside the box for Bonilla to deliver the 1-0 lead in first half stoppage time.
Bonilla would get an opportunity to double the lead in the 63rd minute, but his shot from just outside the box was delivered wide.
In the 83rd minute, Bonilla would deliver a rocket inside the box but Room reacted with a deflected save to keep his team in contention.
Gino Van Kessel nearly tied things up in second half stoppage time, but could not get it past Hernandez, as time would wind down and El Salvador would collect the full three points.