Led by Seattle Sounders center back Román Torres, Panama kicked off its 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup campaign with a 2-0 win over Trinidad and Tobago at Allianz Field in Saint Paul, Minn.
Torres captained his national team, while Joevin Jones entered the match as a substitute for T&T in the 65th minute.
Prior to Jones’ introduction, it was a comfortable match for Torres and Panama. Los Canaleros broke the deadlock in the 53rd minute when Armando Cooper fired home his shot from inside the box.
T&T’s attack was listless through the first hour of the match, but Jones provided an immediate spark off the bench.
Playing in a wide midfield role, the Sounders utility man created the best chance of the game for Trinidad in the 68th minute. Jones beat one defender and then struck a low, driven ball across the box that was met at the back post, but the ensuing shot was cleared off the line.
Panama quickly stormed down the field and iced the match, with Édgar Bárcenas scoring a goal from close range after an impressive double-save from T&T goalkeeper Marvin Phillip.
Panama’s next group-stage match is against Guyana on June 22 (2:30 p.m. PT; FS2) while Jones and Trinidad will face the United States later that day (5 p.m. PT, FS1).