It was a night for records as Canada won their opening match of Concacaf Nations League with a 6:0 victory over Cuba. Jonathan David set Canada’s single-season goal scoring record with his 8th goal of the year while captain Junior Hoilett scored a hat trick in front of his hometown crowd. Jonathan Osorio and Doneil Henry added to the tally as Canada set a Men’s National Team record with six goals in a home international match.
Canada will play the return leg against Cuba on Tuesday 10 September at Truman Bodden Sports Complex in George Town, Cayman Islands. The match will kick off at 18.15 local (19.15 ET / 16.15 PT) and will be broadcast live on OneSoccer.ca.
“It’s a dream come true to captain my country and top it with a hat trick,” said Hoilett. “We worked hard for it all week and we came out as a team, and there is more to come. We just have to keep working as we worked in training this week, with the same intensity, the same positivity. We are going out as a team, you can see we are all trusting each other, we know how to work with each other. You’ve seen the performance today, we came out strong and we have to do it again.”
Canada have now won eight of 10 matches in just under two years with Head Coach John Herdman, including a home unbeaten record of three wins. With 24 goals scored in 2019, Canada have tied the Men’s National Team record for goals in a calendar year (previously set in 2011).
Canada’s starting XI featured Milan Borjan in goal, Richie Laryea at right back, Doneil Henry and Derek Cornelius at centre-back, Kamal Miller at left back, Samuel Piette, Mark-Anthony Kaye, Jonathan Osorio, Alphonso Davies, Junior Hoilett, Jonathan David from the midfield up through to the attack.
With the clean sheet, Borjan moved into second spot on Canada’s all-time list with nineteen.
In the second half, Herdman replaced Kamal Miller with Liam Millar (62’), Jonathan David with Cyle Larin (64’) and Doneil Henry with Steven Vitoria (68’).
Canada’s two September matches against Cuba are part of a four-match series that will include a highly anticipated home match against USA on Tuesday 15 October as well as an away match against USA on Friday 15 November. From the three-nation group, the winner will qualify for the Concacaf Nations League Final Four playoff in June 2020 with the first and second place teams in the group automatically qualifying for the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup.
Tickets to the Canada v USA match at BMO Field on 15 October are available via Ticketmaster.ca with prices starting as low as $25. A special ‘Me+3’ ticket offer is available for this match. By purchasing three tickets in Price Category 2, fans will receive the fourth one free. Fans can visit canadasoccer.com/tickets for complete ticket information.
Canada are two-time Concacaf champions, having won the Concacaf Championship in 1985 and the Concacaf Gold Cup in 2000. In winning the 1985 Concacaf Championship, Canada qualified for the 1986 FIFA World Cup Mexico™; in winning the 2000 Concacaf Gold Cup, Canada qualified for the FIFA Confederations Cup Korea/Japan 2001.
Canada Soccer’s Men’s National Youth Teams, meanwhile, have won two Concacaf titles: both the 1986 and 1996 Concacaf Men’s Youth Championships. Canada have qualified for eight editions of the FIFA U-20 World Cup and seven editions of the FIFA U-17 World Cup.
CONCACAF NATIONS LEAGUE
At stake in 2019-20 Concacaf Nations League is a spot in the Concacaf Hex for FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ Qualifiers. Canada will need to win their group and advance to the final four in Concacaf Nations League in order to narrow the mathematical gap behind Concacaf’s top-six nations in the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Rankings. After the June 2020 rankings, 35 Concacaf nations will be divided onto two pathways to Qatar 2022: the top-six nations in the Concacaf Hex (from which three nations will qualify for Qatar 2022) and the other 29 nations in series of group stage and knockout phase matches (from which one nation will face the fourth-place finisher from the Hex after which that winner will represent Concacaf in a FIFA intercontinental playoff for a spot at Qatar 2022).
As announced this week, Concacaf Nations League will equally serve as a pathway to the Concacaf Gold Cup and ultimately the FIFA Confederations Cup. The top-two nations from each group in League A will automatically qualify for the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup (eight nations) along with the group winners in League B (four nations). From there, a two-round qualifier featuring third-place finishers in League A, second-place finishers in League B and first-place finishers in League C will determine the last four nations to qualify for the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup.
Through Concacaf Nations League, Canada will host USA in a competitive match in Canada for the first time since 1997. The two sides have since faced each other four times in the Concacaf Gold Cup including the 2007 semi-finals. In 2012 and 2013, the two sides played to 0:0 draws in each nation’s respective centennial match.
Source: Canada Soccer