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Seventh Heaven: Mexico dominate to win 7th Gold Cup

Mexico dominates Jamaica in front of just under 70,000 in Philadelphia to win the country's seventh Gold Cup.

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Fueled by their most comprehensive performance in the tournament, Mexico defeated Jamaica 3-1 to lift the 2015 Gold Cup. A record-breaking crowd of 68,930, the largest to ever assemble at a soccer game in Philadelphia, was on hand to watch Andres Guardado and El Tri defeat an upstart Jamaica side.

As has been the case for most of this Gold Cup, Mexico stumbled out of the gate. Jamaica had the clear upper hand in the match's first fifteen minutes, exploiting gaps on the wings in Mexico's 3-5-2. The finishing touch just wasn't there for the Reggae Boyz, who failed to punish Mexico for their early struggles.

Mexico began to take control after they repelled Jamaica's initial advances. Spurred on by the cheers of their faithful, who were out in force on Sunday night, El Tri countered quickly and efficiently.  In the 25th minute, Jesus Corona's header forced a diving save from Ryan Thompson. Five minutes later, Corona lobbed one over the bar after an incisive counter.

Mexico finally broke through in the 31st minute. A cross from the right side found a forgotten Andres Guardado, in acres of space after Adrian Mariappa had turned his back on him. The Mexican talisman volleyed the ball with the instep of his left boot, sending it into the near top corner. Ryan Thompson was too stunned to even make a move, but it wouldn't have mattered.

Jamaica pushed forward with increased vigor after the goal. In the 37th minute, Garath McCleary's lofted ball found Giles Barnes, who elevated to knock it on to a teammate. Adrian Mariappa met Memo Ochoa in the air as the two competed for the ball, but the Jamaican right back was deemed offside.

Jesus Corona extended Mexico's lead not even 90 seconds into the second half. After pick-pocketing Michael Hector from about 30 yards out, Corona continued forward and struck a low shot that found the far corner.

Hector hiccuped again in the 65th, when his botched clearance teed up Oribe Peralta. He was more than happy to accept Jamaica's charity, slamming home Mexico's third with authority.

If the second goal hadn't deflated a Jamaica side that showed so much promise in the early going, the third definitely did.

In the 71st, a combination at the top of the box opened up space for Jesus Corona to add to his tally. Ryan Thompson refused to give Mexico more to cheer about, though, as he got down well to preserve the 3-0 scoreline.

Some smart passing gave Mexico another chance in the 77th, but the angle was too tight for El Tri to find a fourth.

Darren Mattocks pulled one back for Jamaica in the 80th minute, when he turned Maza Rodriguez at the top of the box and struck his team's opener into the far corner. The goal was the second of the tournament for Mattocks, with his first coming in Jamaica's shocking semifinal victory over the United States.

Sunday's triumph earned Mexico their seventh Gold Cup trophy, and their third in the last four tournaments. This is the first time Jamaica has made it to the final stage of CONCACAF's regional championship.

As champions of the 2015 Gold Cup, Mexico will face off with the United States, who won in 2013, to decide which nation represents CONCACAF in the 2017 Confederations Cup. We already know that that match will be played on October 9th, but the location is still a mystery.

Update: CONCACAF has announced that the Rose Bowl will host the Confederations Cup Playoff between the United States and Mexico.