PHILADELPHIA.- Panama Manager Julio Dely Valdes spoke to the media for the final time at the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup following his side’s 1-0 quarterfinal loss to Jamaica at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.
While disappointed with the result, Dely Valdes had no problems with the effort shown by his players.
“We didn’t lose this game because of a lack of passion or energy,” the manager said. “We gave our all, our players, our coaches, our supporters.”
“We just didn’t do enough to finish the chances we created,” Dely Valdes continued. “They (Jamaica) have a great goalkeeper. He played very well, but we could have done better in this area.”
After dominating possession and having the lion’s share of the chances throughout most of the game, Panama conceded a penalty kick to Jamaica in the 75th minute which was converted by veteran FW Darren Mattocks.
It would prove to be the only goal of the match, pushing Jamaica through to the semifinals and sending Panama home.
“There’s nothing that comes easy on the football pitch,” said Dely Valdes. “They defended well and have one of the best goalies in the tournament. We had shots and opportunities on goal. We earned those. We just didn’t finish them. There’s no excuses from Panama.”
Dely Valdes was also asked about the national team future of Captain Roman Torres, who just wrapped up his seventh Gold Cup.
“Roman wasn’t here for sentimental reasons,” Dely Valdes said with a smile. “He was here with this team because he still had a very important role to play.”
“I thought he was one of the best players on the field today. For as long as he can perform like that, he’ll be welcome on this team anytime.”