Canada have opened the 2020 season with back-to-back victories over Barbados after a Friday night 4:1 victory in California. Charles-Andreas Brym, Russell Teibert, Amer Didic and Jayden Nelson were the goalscorers as Canada won their second match in less than a week by the same scoreline.
The Friday night victory was Canada’s 12th in the past 15 matches as they prepare for an important international meeting with Iceland on Wednesday 15 January. Canadian fans can watch the Wednesday match live on CanadaSoccer.com at 19.00 ET / 16.00 PT, with extended coverage across Canada Soccer’s digital channels on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
“The players are happy with the performance as it has been a quick turnaround between games with a lot of changing faces, but the group seem to be getting stronger as we build towards the Iceland match,” said John Herdman, Canada Soccer’s Men’s National Team Head Coach. “We knew it was going to be a physical test and the players rose to that challenge. They maintained their commitment to attack and press which was pleasing given where many of them are at with their club seasons.”
Across two matches, eight different players scored for Canada and nine different players made their international debuts. On Friday, Brym, Didic and Nelson scored their first international goals while Didic, Zorhan Bassong, Jacob Shaffelburg and Tristan Borges made their international debuts. It also marked the first time in Men’s National Team history that Canada opened their international season with back-to-back wins in three successive years.
In the Friday match, Canada carried the bulk of possession and created several chances. In the second minute, Tesho Akindele put Brym through up the middle, but the chance was shot just wide of the net. Brym made no mistake on his next opportunity on the Russell Teibert corner kick in the 10th minute, scoring on a header from inside the box.
In the 28th minute, Didic nearly scored on a Liam Fraser corner, but the ball was just over the net. Then in the 36th minute, Canada made it 2-0 after a nice combination play from Samuel Piette to Jonathan Osorio to Zorhan Bassong to the goalscorer Teibert.
In the second half, Canada continued with their pressure on Barbados. In the 64th minute, a Fraser corner kick was headed in by the debutant Didic for the 3-0 lead. Just five minutes later, however, Barbados broke through after a slip up on the grass and Shamar Edwards had the Canada lead reduced to two.
In the 86th minute, Nelson became the Men’s National Team’s second-youngest goalscorer after he intercepted an attempted clearance by the Barbados goalkeeper Liam Brathwaite and fired it into the empty goal for the 4-1 Canada lead.
Canada started Maxime Crépeau in goal, Richie Laryea at right back, Derek Cornelius and Amer Didic at centre back, Zorhan Bassong at left back, and Samuel Piette, Russell Teibert, Charles-Andreas Brym, Tesho Akindele, Liam Fraser and Captain Jonathan Osorio from the midfield up through to the attack. In the second half, coach Herdman replaced Piette with Shamit Shome (46’), Teibert with Jayden Nelson (59’), Laryea with Ashtone Morgan (62’), Akindele with Jacob Shaffelburg (69’), Osorio with Tristan Borges (70’), and Fraser with Noble Okello (81’).
MEN’S NATIONAL TEAM
In 2019, Canada reached the Quarter-finals of back-to-back Concacaf Gold Cups for the first time since 2009 and finished second in their group of the inaugural Concacaf Nations League A (tied on points with USA, but second on goals difference). In FIFA/Coca-Cola World Rankings, Canada picked up the most ranking points of any nation in Concacaf Nations League A (19.74 points). Canada also qualified for the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup and the next edition of Concacaf Nations League A.