Jamaica beats Canada 3:0, falls short of advancing in World Cup qualifying

KINGSTON, Jamaica – Goals by Luton Shelton, Marlon King and Omar Cummings led Jamaica to a 3:0 win over Canada on Wednesday, but it wasn’t enough for the Reggae Boyz to advance to the final phase of World Cup qualifying.

The victory was Jamaica’s third straight and finished it with 10 points in Group B of the CONCACAF semifinal round. Honduras won the group with 12 points, two better than Mexico and Jamaica. Despite going winless in its last three, including a pair of losses, Mexico advanced over Jamaica on goal difference.

Shelton’s goal in the 27th minute sent the sell-out crowd of green and gold into delirium at Independence Park.

It was the second goal in as many matches for 23-year-old striker, who plays for Norwegian club Valerenga and was making his seventh appearance for Jamaica.

King, a striker with English Premiership side Wigan Athletic, added a penalty in the 58th and Colorado Rapids striker Omar Cummings, playing in his fifth game for Jamaica, tacked on the finale in the 86th minute.

Canada and Jamaica drew 1-1 in their opening game of Group B round robin play in Toronto on August 20.

Canadian had already been eliminated, but Jamaica – forced to play its first three games away from home in the semifinal round, rallied with three straight victories when Theodore Whitmore replaced Rene Simoes as manager. Former England and Liverpool hero John Barnes will now replace Whitmore for the Digicel Caribbean Championship finals which Jamaica will host December 3-14.

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