CanMNT squad announced for final slate of World Cup Qualifiers
Canada Soccer’s Men’s National Team have announced their squad for the final window in the Concacaf Final Round of FIFA World Cup Qualifiers against Costa Rica, Jamaica and Panama from 24 to 30 March. The decisive window provides Concacaf leaders Canada with an opportunity to build on their 11-match unbeaten streak against a tough schedule of three matches in three countries across seven days. The schedule features a pair of away matches against Costa Rica and Panama on either side of a sold-out home match against Jamaica on Sunday 27 March at BMO Field in Toronto, Ontario.
“There’s lots for Canada to play for as we started this journey with the mission of qualifying for Qatar 2022 and nothing has changed,”said John Herdman, Canada Soccer’s Men’s National Team Head Coach. “There is a chance to come back home to Canada and have our moment with the fans that we have always dreamed about. That’s what we are playing for in this window.
This marks the fifth and final international window across the 14-match Concacaf Final Round for FIFA World Cup Qualifiers, with Canada in first place on 25 points after 11 matches. Canada are the only undefeated squad through the Concacaf Final Round and lead by four points ahead of Mexico and USA, eight points ahead of Panama, and nine points ahead of Costa Rica.
From 14 matches, the top-three teams will qualify for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ while the fourth-place team will advance to an intercontinental playoff with an additional opportunity to qualify for Qatar 2022. While Canada are two points away from qualification through one of the top three spots in Concacaf, they have already clinched fourth place or better which means their Qatar 2022 journey is guaranteed to continue beyond the March window. Six of the eight nations in the Concacaf Final Round still have a chance to finish in fourth place (Canada, USA, Mexico, Panama, Costa Rica, El Salvador) while two nations have been eliminated (Jamaica and Honduras).
In the March window, Canada will face Costa Rica away at the Estadio Nacional in San José on Thursday 24 March, Jamaica back home at BMO Field in Toronto on Sunday 27 March, and Panama away at the Estadio Olímpico Rommel Fernández in Panama City on Wednesday 30 March. All matches in Canada’s FIFA World Cup Qualifiers campaign will be broadcast LIVE on OneSoccer (including OneSoccer.ca, Fubo.tv and Telus channel 980), Sportsnet and RDS. Fans will find extended coverage across Canada Soccer’s digital channels on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube featuring the hashtag #CANMNT.
Canada’s ongoing quest for Qatar has inspired Canadians from coast-to-coast resulting in incredible scenes of CanadaRED support for historic victories at BMO Field in Toronto, Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton and Tim Hortons Field in Hamilton. The spotlight now returns to Toronto for this final home fixture of the 20-match journey for the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers that began in March 2021.
All international matches held in Canada are subject to all public health considerations to ensure the safety of all players and fans. Notably, all fans in attendance must follow City of Toronto, Province of Ontario, and BMO Field protocols and guidelines. For more information, visit https://www.bmofield.com/plan-your-visit/back-in-action.
Canada announces March squad for the Concacaf Final Round of FIFA World Cup Qualifiers#CANMNT 🍁 https://t.co/C4k7itTgIO pic.twitter.com/90f1XJmmnX— Canada Soccer (@CanadaSoccerEN) March 20, 2022
Canada’s 25-player squad features footballers from clubs based in Canada, USA and nine other nations across Europe. The squad is led by captain Atiba Hutchinson, a six-time Player of the Year who is also the Men’s National Team’s all-time leader with 92 international “A” appearances. Midfielder Hutchinson, who plays for Beşiktaş JK in Turkey, was one Canada’s two goalscorers in the most recent 2:0 away victory over El Salvador on 2 February. The other goalscorer in that away victory was one-time Player of the Year Jonathan David, Canada’s 22-year old striker with Lille OSC in France.
Canada’s second-most experienced player is Milan Borjan of Red Star Belgrade (FK Crvena Zvezda) in Serbia, the January and February Player of the Month. Borjan is the Men’s National Team’s all-time leader with 61 international “A” goalkeeper appearances. Borjan posted three-straight clean sheets in the most recent window against Honduras, USA and El Salvador while Hutchinson, David (two), Cyle Larin and Sam Adekugbe were the goalscorers (along with an own goal which gave Canada six goals in three matches).
From Major League Soccer, recent goalscorers Lucas Cavallini (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Mark-Anthony Kaye (Colorado Rapids), Jonathan Osorio (Toronto FC) and debutant Ismaël Koné (CF Montréal) are all included in the Canada squad. Other Canadians called into the March camp from MLS clubs are Maxime Crépeau (Los Angeles FC), Cristián Gutiérrez (Vancouver Whitecaps FC), Doneil Henry (also Los Angeles FC), Alistair Johnston (CF Montréal), Kamal Miller (also CF Montréal), and Dayne St. Clair (Minnesota United FC).
Along with Hutchinson, both Larin (also with Beşiktaş JK) and Adekugbe (Hatayspor FC) are based in Turkey. Other Canadians called into the March camp from European clubs are Tajon Buchanan (Club Brugge SV in Belgium), Derek Cornelius (Panetolikos FC in Greece), Stephen Eustáquio (FC Porto in Portugal), Liam Fraser (KMSK Deinze in Belgium), Junior Hoilett (Reading FC in England), Scott Kennedy (SSV Jahn Regensburg in Germany), Richie Laryea (Nottingham Forest in England), Liam Millar (FC Basel in Switzerland), Iké Ugbo (KRC Genk in Belgium), and Steven Vitória (Moreirense FC in Portugal).
Unavailable for the March camp for medical reasons are Alphonso Davies, Samuel Piette and David Wotherspoon.
CANADA SOCCER’S MEN’S NATIONAL TEAM PROGRAM
Canada Soccer’s Men’s National Team are two-time Concacaf champions, previously winning the 1985 Concacaf Championship and 2000 Concacaf Gold Cup. Across the past five years from 2017 to 2021, Canada are one of only four nations that finished top-six across all four Concacaf major tournaments: fifth place in Concacaf Nations League A, sixth place at both the 2017 and 2019 Concacaf Gold Cups, and a semi-final finish at the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup. As part of a landmark year in 2021, Canada set Men’s National Team records with 13 wins, nine clean sheets and 55 goals scored, also reaching the Concacaf Final Round for the first time since 1997.
GK- Milan Borjan | SRB / FK Crvena zvezda (Red Star Belgrade)
GK- Maxime Crépeau | USA / Los Angeles FC
GK- Dayne St. Clair | USA / Minnesota United FC
CB- Derek Cornelius | GRE / Panetolikos FC
CB- Doneil Henry | USA / Los Angeles FC
CB- Scott Kennedy | GER / SSV Jahn Regensburg
CB- Kamal Miller | CAN / CF Montréal
CB- Steven Vitória | POR / Moreirense FC
FB- Samuel Adekugbe | TUR / Hatayspor FC
FB- Cristián Gutierrez | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC
FB- Alistair Johnston | CAN / CF Montréal
FB- Richie Laryea | ENG / Nottingham Forest FC
M- Stephen Eustáquio | POR / FC Porto
M- Liam Fraser | BEL / KMSK Deinze
M- Atiba Hutchinson | TUR / Beşiktaş JK
M- Mark-Anthony Kaye | USA / Colorado Rapids
M- Ismaël Koné | CAN / CF Montréal
M- Jonathan Osorio | CAN / Toronto FC
F- Tajon Buchanan | BEL / Club Brugge KV
F- Lucas Cavallini | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC
F- Jonathan David | FRA / Lille OSC
F- David Junior Hoilett | ENG / Reading FC
F- Cyle Larin | TUR / Beşiktaş JK
F- Liam Millar | SUI / FC Basel
F- Iké Ugbo | BEL / KRC Genk
Name | Age | Where they grew up | Active start/first club
Adekugbe, Samuel | 27 | Calgary, AB, CAN | Manchester United Grassroots
Borjan, Milan | 34 | Hamilton, ON, CAN | Radnicki JP
Buchanan, Tajon | 23 | Brampton, ON, CAN | Brampton YSC
Cavallini, Lucas | 29 | Mississauga, ON, CAN | Club Uruguay Toronto
Cornelius, Derek | 24 | Ajax, ON, CAN | Ajax SC
Crépeau, Maxime | 27 | Candiac, QC, CAN | Ligue de soccer pour enfants de Candiac
David, Jonathan | 22 | Ottawa, ON, CAN | Gloucester Dragons
Eustáquio, Stephen | 25 | Leamington, ON, CAN | Leamington Minor Soccer (house league)
Fraser, Liam | 24 | Vancouver, BC & Toronto, ON, CAN | Waterloo Ducks
Gutierrez, Cristián | 25 | Santiago, CHI | Escuela CSD Colo-Colo
Henry, Doneil | 28 | Brampton, ON, CAN | Brampton YSC
Hoilett, David Junior | 31 | Brampton, ON, CAN | Mississauga SC
Hutchinson, Atiba | 39 | Brampton, ON, CAN | Brampton YSC
Johnston, Alistair | 23 | Aurora, ON, CAN | Lakeshore SC
Kaye, Mark-Anthony | 27 | Toronto, ON, CAN | Wexford SC
Kennedy, Scott | 24 | Calgary, AB, CAN | Calgary West SC
Koné, Ismaël | 19 | Montréal, QC, CAN | AS Notre-Dame-de-Grâce
Larin, Cyle | 26 | Brampton, ON, CAN | Brampton YSC
Laryea, Richie | 27 | Toronto, ON, CAN | Club Uruguay Toronto
Millar, Liam | 22 | Brampton, ON, CAN | Brampton YSC
Miller, Kamal | 24 | Scarborough, ON, CAN | Malvern SC
Osorio, Jonathan | 29 | Brampton, ON, CAN | Toronto Futsal League
St. Clair, Dayne | 24 | Pickering, ON, CAN | Ephinay Church Soccer League
Ugbo, Iké | 23 | London, ENG | Brampton East SC
Vitória, Steven | 35 | Sudbury & Mississauga, ON, CAN | Sudbury Lions