Here’s the thing about third place matches: THEY SHOULD NEVER, EVER, EVER EXIST.
Teams don’t go to a tournament hoping to finish third, and definitely not after they’ve already made the semifinals. Narrowly missing the final leaves them heartbroken and all they want to do is go home, but instead they have to stick around and play in a match that nobody cares about.
The no-third-place-game rule is doubly true for the Gold Cup, a tournament that is flawed at best and an abomination at worst. CONCACAF abolished the third place game more than a decade ago, but apparently someone got really drunk and was allowed to make a decision so the confederation decided to bring the third place game back this year.
And if the idea of a third place game isn’t bad enough, imagine going to extra time in the meaningless match. That’s what happened when the United States and Panama met on Saturday. When the Americans equalized to put the dreadful match on track for extra time, Twitter responded accordingly.
At least England had some common sense: