Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.- Curacao Manager Remko Bicentini and goalscoring hero Leandro Bacuna spoke to the media at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia on Saturday night, as Curacao prepares for the most high-profile game in national history, a 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup quarterfinal against the United States, Curacao’s first ever knockout round affair.
Bicentini spoke of balancing gratitude with focus on the task at hand.
“We are very proud to be playing in a quarterfinal,” said the manager. “Now we are here, and we want to win. We know this is not an easy game, but everyone in Curacao, the people, our players, our staff is proud. I know we will give our best tomorrow.”
Bacuna, the Cardiff City player who scored the only goal in a 1-0 win over Honduras in Group C (Curacao’s first ever win at the Gold Cup), spoke of what that win did for the team.
“I remember after I was subbed out,” Bacuna recalled, “I stood on the sideline for the last few minutes, screaming at the boys to give every last meter for the team. You look at what we did in the last game, scoring in the 93rd minute to get the draw, it was that same spirit. That’s the spirit we must have.”
“We’ve got the potential,” Bacuna said. “We’ve got the quality. And we’ve got a good manager to bring it all together.”
“We know we have to score goals to win,” Bicentini said with a smile at the end of the presser. “And we’ve got a guy right here who knows how to do it.”
Bicentini, Bacuna, and Curacao will take on the U.S. at 8 PM ET on Sunday.