Canada Soccer have selected their squad for the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup, the confederation’s championship that kicks off 15 June at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. The biennial competition provides a tremendous opportunity for the Canadian squad as they face Concacaf’s top nations for the first time since reaching the Quarter-finals in 2017.
Canada will play in the first match of the tournament when they face Martinique on 15 June in Pasadena (19.30 ET / 16.30 PT) before facing Mexico on 19 June in Denver (22.00 ET / 20.00 MT) and Cuba on 23 June in Charlotte (18.00 ET). From 16 nations divided into four groups, the top two nations from each group will advance to the 2019 Quarter-finals.
“We laid a good foundation culturally and tactically through Concacaf Nations League Qualifying and the team seem focused and ready to push each other and the country as far as they can in the 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup,” said John Herdman, Canada Soccer’s Men’s National Team Head Coach. “The tournament will be tough with the quick turnaround of games, the travel schedule and playing at altitude in Denver against a very good opponent, then to the heat and humidity of Charlotte, but this is what you want as a team to be tested and then to grow from those experiences. We’ve been tested in different ways through Concacaf Nations League and now we head into a tournament setting where things will move at a rapid pace. It’s going to be great to see the team come together in this moment.”
Every match will matter as Canada continues to build momentum along their journey to the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar™. The 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup will provide Canada’s young players with an important test before Concacaf Nations League Group A begins in the Fall and then FIFA World Cup Qualifiers start thereafter.
Unlike two years ago, national teams will not be able to switch their squad after the group stage. In all, the competition runs 23 days from 15 June to 7 July, with the Final to be played at Soldier Stadium in Chicago, IL on 7 July. Ahead of the Concacaf Gold Cup, Canada will hold a training camp that opens in early June.
Canada will look to improve on their last performance at the 2017 Concacaf Gold Cup after they went unbeaten in the group stage for the first time since 2009. Two years ago, they won 4:2 over French Guiana before drawing 1:1 with Costa Rica and 0:0 with Honduras.
The Canada squad features 16 players with Concacaf Gold Cup experience, 12 of whom helped Canada reach the Quarter-finals of the 2017 edition. Four players return after missing the last edition: former Canadian Players of the Year Atiba Hutchinson and Will Johnson as well as former Canadian U-20 Players of the Year Doneil Henry and Ashtone Morgan.
Of note, Hutchinson will be making his sixth appearance at the Concacaf Gold Cup, equaling the national record held by Julian de Guzman. Hutchinson previously helped Canada reach the Semi-final stage in 2007 and the Quarter-final stage in 2009. This will be Hutchinson’s first Concacaf Gold Cup since 2011, also his first since his Summer 2013 move to Beşiktaş JK in Turkey.
Milan Borjan, Jonathan Osorio, Samuel Piette and Russell Teibert are all making their fourth appearance at the Concacaf Gold Cup. Others returning from the last Concacaf Gold Cup in 2017 are Scott Arfield, Lucas Cavallini, Maxime Crépeau, Alphonso Davies, Junior Hoilett, Mark-Anthony Kaye, Cyle Larin and Jayson Leutwiler.
Davies was a standout at the last Concacaf Gold Cup, named to the tournament all-star team and winner of the Top Scorer and Best Young Player awards. Still only 18 years old, Davies just completed his first season in the German Bundesliga.
While Borjan has recently won back-to-back Serbian SuperLig titles with Red Star Belgrade, Osorio has won a trio of Canadian Championship titles with Toronto FC since 2016. In 2018, he was MVP and Top Scorer of the Canadian Championship as well as the Golden Boot winner in Toronto FC’s run to the Concacaf Champions League Grand Final.
All seven Concacaf Gold Cup debutants are 22 or younger, including first-time call up Noble Okello of Toronto FC. Other debutants are Zachary Brault-Guillard, Marcus Godinho, Kamal Miller, teenagers Jonathan David and Liam Millar, and 2018 Canadian Youth International Player of the Year Derek Cornelius.
For the second competition in a row, Canada features a team with an average age younger than 26 (average 25.53 years across 23 players). Along with the group of 23 players selected for the Concacaf Gold Cup, Canada’s pre-tournament camp in California will feature Adam Straith of VfL Sportfreunde Lotte as a 24th player.
CANADA AT THE CONCACAF GOLD CUP
The Concacaf Gold Cup is the official national team championship of the confederation. Drawing large crowds and millions of television viewers from across the region, the Concacaf Gold Cup is a celebration of soccer, sportsmanship, and culture. For the first time, the 2019 Concacaf Gold will feature 16 participating nations, three host countries, and 17 venues.
Beyond the group phase, the top-two nations in each group will advance to the competition’s Quarter-finals to be played in Houston and Philadelphia. The Concacaf Gold Cup continues with the Semi-finals on 2 July in Glendale and 3 July in Nashville followed by the Final on 7 July in Chicago.
GK- Milan Borjan | SRB / FK Crvena zvezda (Red Star Belgrade)
GK- Maxime Crépeau | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC
GK- Jayson Leutwiler | ENG / Blackburn Rovers
CB- Derek Cornelius | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC
CB- Doneil Henry | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC
CB- Kamal Miller | USA / Orlando City SC
FB- Zachary Brault-Guillard | CAN / Impact de Montréal
FB- Marcus Godinho | SCO / Heart of Midlothian FC
FB- Ashtone Morgan | CAN / Toronto FC
M- Scott Arfield | SCO / Glasgow Rangers FC
M- Atiba Hutchinson | TUR / Beşiktaş JK
M- Will Johnson | USA / Orlando City SC
M- Mark-Anthony Kaye | USA / Los Angeles FC
M- Noble Okello | CAN / Toronto FC
M- Jonathan Osorio | CAN / Toronto FC
M- Samuel Piette | CAN / Impact de Montréal
M- Russell Teibert | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC
F- Lucas Cavallini | MEX / Puebla FC
F- Jonathan David | BEL / KAA Gent
F- Cyle Larin | TUR / Beşiktaş JK
W- Alphonso Davies | GER / FC Bayern München
W- David Junior Hoilett | WAL / Cardiff City FC
W- Liam Millar | ENG / Liverpool FC U-23