Canada Soccer’s National Teams are a perfect five for five at home in 2017 as the Men’s National Team won 2:0 over Jamaica to close out a Summer of Soccer Series. Anthony Jackson-Hamel and Jonathan Osorio were the goalscorers as Canada thrilled a terrific crowd of 21,724 at BMO Field in Toronto. David “Junior” Hoilett was named Man of the Match.
“This was probably the best game I’ve seen Junior play,” said Men’s National Team Head Coach Octavio Zambrano. “When they asked me about Man of the Match he was hands down the player chosen. He is an elite-type of player, he’s at the elite level. When he gets the ball the first thing in his mind is there is a goal, and I want to get there and that bodes well for us because that’s the kind of football we want to play”
It marked the second-highest crowd for a Men’s National Team international soccer match in Toronto (all competitions) and also the second-highest attendance for an international friendly since a 1994 pre-FIFA World Cup friendly with Brazil. In 2017 at home, Canada’s five wins have come across four different international opponents in four Canadian cities: the Men’s National Team won 2:1 over Curaçao in Montréal and 2:0 over Jamaica in Toronto; the Women’s National Team won 3:1 over Mexico in Vancouver, 3:1 over Costa Rica in Winnipeg, and 6:0 over Costa Rica in Toronto.
The Men’s National Team win somewhat helped exact revenge over Jamaica after a 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup quarter-finals defeat. Canada hold the all-time lead in their international head-to-head meetings, with Canada posting nine wins, six draws, and six losses in 21 matches.
Canada are two-time CONCACAF champions, having won the CONCACAF Championship in 1985 and the CONCACAF Gold Cup in 2000. In six matches under new head coach Octavio Zambrano, Canada’s international record is three wins, two draws, and one loss. In July, Canada returned to the CONCACAF Gold Cup quarter-finals for the first time since 2009. Overall in 2017, Canada’s international record is now four wins, three draws, and one loss in eight matches.
CANADA SOCCER HALL OF FAME
Ahead of the 2 September match, Canada Soccer officially honoured Paul Stalteri as a member of the Canada Soccer Hall of Fame. The CONCACAF champion and former Men’s National Team captain will be celebrated as part of the pre-match festivities at BMO Field.
A CONCACAF champion in 2000, the two-time Canadian Player of the Year represented Canada at the FIFA Confederations Cup Korea/Japan 2001. He won both a Bundesliga title and a German Cup (DPF-Pokal) with Werder Breman in 2004. From his youth soccer days in Brampton, Stalteri played in both the Bundesliga in Germany and the Premier League in England.
MEN’S NATIONAL TEAM PLAYERS HONOURED
Canada Soccer paid tribute to a handful of Men’s National Team players as part of an in-stadium ceremony after the pre-match warm ups. The tribute honoured: Marcel de Jong, Nik Ledgerwood, and Tosaint Ricketts for surpassing 50 international appearances; Alphonso Davies for winning two 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup awards and the 2016 Canadian U-17 Player of the Year award; and Atiba Hutchinson for winning his record fifth Canadian Player of the Year award.