Curacao falls to Jamaica, then loses captain Martina
Curacao captain Cuco Martina (white jersey, #3) left the CONCACAF Gold Cup after the loss to Jamaica on July 9, 2017, reportedly to join a club in England. (Photo: AFP Services)
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SAN DIEGO, California -- Curacao played its first-ever CONCACAF Gold Cup match Sunday, a 2-0 loss to Jamaica at Qualcomm Stadium.  Now, it will finish the competition without its captain.

Defender Cuco Martina played a full match, got dressed and was on his way out to Europe.  Reports had him flying to England to join Everton.

Curacao head coach Remko Bicentini confirmed that Martina was set to leave after facing Jamaica.

“He is leaving after this game,” Bicentini said during the post-match news conference.  “But we still have to play 11 on 11.”

The 49-year-old declined to say who would be handed the captaincy, commenting: “I’ll tell you in a later stadium.”

Two weeks ago, Bicentini was smiling after his side defeated Jamaica, 2-1, in the 2016/17 Scotiabank CFU Men’s Caribbean final.  The rematch proved to be a different story, with the Reggae Boyz making six – impressively valuable -- changes to its starting lineup.

“We knew it was going to be a tough game,” expressed Bicentini.  “Overall, we created some good chances and we played well.

“In these sort of games, effectivity is very important and it must be better,” Bicentini said.  “We lose the game because we don’t finish our own chances.  Jamaica’s goal came off a set piece and we were not in good position.”

Curacao now travels to Denver, where it will face El Salvador on Thursday at Sports Authority Field.