Canada selects Para Soccer squad for IFCPF Qualification Tournament
Canada Soccer has announced a 14-player roster that will participate in the upcoming 2016 IFCPF Qualification Tournament in Vejen, Denmark. Coach Drew Ferguson has selected a squad mixed with experience and youth, with the 14 players to gather for a five-day preparation camp in Toronto from 6-10 July.
The 2016 IFCPF Qualification Tournament runs 29 July to 6 August, with Canada’s three group matches plotted over four days at the start of the competition. Canada needs to finish first or second in their group to qualify for next year’s 2017 IFCPF Intercontinental Cup.
“Most importantly, we need to finish first or second in our group to qualify for next year’s Intercontinental Cup,” said Drew Ferguson, Canada Soccer’s Para Soccer head coach. “Hopefully we can win the group and get a favourable cross over in the quarter finals.”
Canada faces Denmark on 29 July, Finland on 30 July, and Japan on 1 August. From four groups of three or four nations (13 nations in all), eight will advance to the knock-out phase, with the Quarterfinals on 2 and 3 August, the Semifinals on 4 & 5 August, and the final classification matches (including the gold medal match) on 6 August.
Included in Canada’s squad are the program’s two most experienced players, Dustin Hodgson (58 international appearances) and Matthew Brown (48 appearances), as is two-time Canadian Para Soccer Player of the Year Liam Stanley. While leading goalscorer Trevor Stiles is unavailable because of injury, the program’s four next best are all featured (Hodgson 19 goals, Jamie Ackinclose 19 goals, Brown 15 goals, Samuel Charron 12 goals).
Along with Stiles, experienced goalkeeper Derek Whitson is also unavailable through injury. In goal, Canada will likely feature Damien Wojtiw and Sam Denton. Denton, Dan Benoit, Raji Kamoun, and Duncan McDonald are all looking to make their international debuts for Canada.
Canada’s Para Soccer Team is made up of athletes who have cerebral palsy or have had a stroke or brain injury. Athletes that are interested in Canada’s Para Soccer Team should contact coach Drew Ferguson at email@example.com.
Ackinclose, Jamie | Victoria, BC, CAN
Benoit, Dan | Saskatoon, SK, CAN
Brown, Matthew | Peterborough, ON, CAN
Bruno, Lucas | Calgary, AB, CAN
Charron, Samuel | Ottawa, ON, CAN
Denton, Sam | Southwold, ON, CAN
Fawcett, Chris | Kingston, ON, CAN
Heffernan, Nicholas | London, ON, CAN
Hodgson, Dustin | Vancouver, BC, CAN
Kamoun, Raji | Montréal, QC, CAN
McDonald, Duncan | Powell River, BC, CAN
Proietti, Vito | Montréal, QC, CAN
Stanley, Liam | Victoria, BC, CAN
Wojtiw, Damien | Toronto, ON, CAN