Canada will have the chance to see some of the nation’s brightest young talents and notable veterans in action in Toronto this coming Tuesday 16 October. Canada Soccer have announced their Men’s National Team squad for their first home match in 2018-19 Concacaf Nations League Qualifying featuring some familiar heroes as well as some emerging international talents.
“We want to play for the fans and win for the fans, it is that simple,” said John Herdman, Canada Soccer’s Men’s National Team Head Coach. “We hope the fans can join us on our journey towards the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar™.”
Canada will face Dominica in Matchweek 2 in 2018-19 Concacaf Nations League Qualifying, the second of four matches from September 2018 to March 2019. The upcoming home match is Tuesday 16 October at BMO Field in Toronto.
KEY PLAYERS AT BIG CLUBS
An exciting mix of youth continue to push their way into the Canada lineup, including teenagers Jonathan David of KAA Gent, Alphonso Davies of Vancouver Whitecaps and soon FC Bayern, Liam Millar of Liverpool FC, and first-time call up Ballou Tabla of FC Barcelona. Stars like Scott Arfield, Junior Hoilett, Jonathan Osorio and Atiba Hutchinson are also featured in the Canada squad.
Davies made his debut in 2017 (he was Best Young Player at the Concacaf Gold Cup), David made his debut with a two-goal performance in September while Millar made his debut with a man-of-the-match performance in March.
The squad features plenty of skill from professional clubs in Canada, USA, Mexico and across Europe. Amongst the European stars are midfielder Arfield from Glasgow Rangers FC, winger Hoilett from Cardiff City FC in England’s Premier League, and six-time Canadian Player of the Year Hutchinson from Beşiktaş JK. North American-based veterans include Lucas Cavallini from Puebla FC and Jonathan Osorio from Toronto FC.
“We want to be in that top-6 of qualifying to get into Group A of Concacaf Nations League, so we won’t be putting any result at risk and we won’t be taking anything for granted,” said Herdman. “We will be working harder than any other team to make sure that, when we get to Toronto for the 16 October match, those fans will get another positive performance from our players.”
Canada’s Hutchinson returns to the Canada lineup for the first time since last year’s 2:0 home victory over Jamaica at BMO Field. Hutchinson has made 78 career international “A” appearances, fifth most on Canada’s all-time list. The Brampton talisman has recently led Beşiktaş to back-to-back Turkish Süper Lig titles.
Along with Hutchinson, other Ontario players making a “homecoming” on 16 October include Hoilett, Cyle Larin of Beşiktaş, Manjrekar James of FC Fredericia, Doneil Henry of Vancouver Whitecaps FC, and Jay Chapman, Ashtone Morgan, and Osorio of Toronto FC.
Other notable veterans are Russell Teibert of Vancouver Whitecaps FC, Samuel Piette of Impact de Montréal, Tosaint Ricketts of Toronto FC, and Simon Thomas of Kongsvinger in Norway.