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NFL CANADA


Who's to blame for Canada's poor showing?
Mon, July 9, 2007

With a 2-0 loss to Congo, Canada became the first country to be held off the scoresheet in three separate tournaments (1985, 2001, 2007).

The country that made it to one World Cup (and didn't win a game or score a goal in that one, either) brought the humiliation home as host of the biggest soccer event in Canadian history.

No wins, no goals scored



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37 Comments

Meh. It's soccer. Who cares?
evilJaze, 2007-07-12 07:31:40

The Under 20 Canadian Team results baffle me completely. I have coached students at the elementary level for over sixteen years now and many of the youths I have helped train went on to OFSA victories representing their Family High School, in this case Holy Cross, located in Woodbridge. I also coached briefly in the Mississauga with many talented Croatian youngsters. The creativity that these kids displayed on an ongoing basis game in and game out was sometimes better than looking at some of the World Cup highlights. We have the talent in this country to win at the most elite levels of this there is no doubt in my mind. The problem is political plain and simple. We do not promote the kids that actually have the talent to compete with their counterparts in other areas of the world. This is what is so sad to me. The finishing at the games was absolutely elementary and I can guareentee you that my players would have had a field day if they had the amount of corners that Canada had in the Congo game. These guys were heading the ball in an upward motion, what is with that, every major player of scoring ability knows that contact must be made in a downward fashion on a header, not only does this reposition the ball but it puts more speed on the redirect than would a ball headed upward. I have seen so many young teens with so much ball control abilities and natural goal scorers that it puzzles me to see this team constructed in this fashion. We will never win until we go scouting the talent that we truly have in this nation. Start by getting coaches with international experience of the South American and European variety and then put players on the team that have earned the right to be there. I'm tired of seeing us not succeed when I know that we could win and compete at this level if only we had the political will to put the kids on the team that have the talent to compete with their peers anywhere on the planet. To bad, we had a great opportunity to show the world that we can play the game, and we kinda blew it. No use crying over it but I swear I will stop watching Canada compete in soccer matches in the future unless something dramatic happens right now. Start by hiring a better coach and scouting the second and third generation talent that we already have in our midst.
Frank Vilardo, 2007-07-11 18:48:13

They should have had my 16 year old grandson Gary playing for them. He is a striker par excellence.Oh well....maybe in two years time do you think?

Two years ago he scored fifty goals with his Edmonton team...most in one game was six. Scouts.....where are you?

Now playing out of Sooke on Vancouver Island.
Ken McKay, 2007-07-11 17:31:04

I think Dale Mitchell blaming the player is a joke. Everyone deserve blame, coach Mitchell did not add the pieces that he thought were missing from this team. He failed and he needs to be accountable.
Trainer, 2007-07-11 17:28:11

We should absolutely be embarrassed. When a nation who has the resources we have and not to be able to score a single goal, never mind qualify for the next round is sad. This was a wonderful opportunity for soccer in this country to do what soccer is starting to do in the USA after they hosted the World Cup. A country like the Congo who has been in a state of war for the last decade or so made it to the round of sixteen; we surely need to ask what went wrong.

Canada has more children in rolled in soccer than in any other sport, the pool of talent is there. The problem is when the children reach the 11 to 13 age where they decide what sport will be their primary focus: hockey or soccer, it’s usually hockey.

CSA should start looking at their grass roots program and start implementing more progressive styles of coaching. We cannot take hockey strategies and use them for soccer as I have seen so many times on the pitch - it simply doesn’t work. Coaching hasn’t changed in 20 years here if not more; it’s time to look at a South American or European style of coaching (not England).

Start teaching the youngsters that soccer is about creating space and good passing, you create space by winning those one-on-ones, and winning those battles will open up more room. If you watch any of the 3 games this was sorely missing. Canada couldn’t get around any one and our passing was miserable.

At the end this was the result of 20 years of a flawed program, but it’s a wonderful opportunity to now start looking at the problem and start rebuilding the program so in 2 or three World Cups we as Canadians can be part of the most popular sport in the world rather than just being spectators.


Cornell, 2007-07-11 16:46:28

As a former player, and a current coach, you cant blame one aspect. Its a full effort. You can start with the administration that doesn't hire the proper coaching administration, the creative coaches, as you can see from canadian soccer in the last decade which is just not fun to watch. Gold Cup this year was actually decent, and saw some flares of creativeness. But these were against poor teams. Then you have to question the coaching itself, there is one thing to admit that you dont have the caliber of players to field a good team, but to use that as an excuse to play a game that is not attacking, and very defensive is a waste. U-20's was a perfect example, what does it prove when you can keep some possesion but you cant register any shots on the net. Then the next thing to focus on is the player development. Obviously are not providing enough competition in the country that creates a "creative player", a solid player. So the Whole System is just not up to par. That being said, its time to learn from mistakes. We cant keep failing over and over again without improvement. What does that say?

I do believe that there is hope for Canadian soccer, but it will take years, at least two world cups from now to see any vast improvement the rate that the administration is doing things now.
Sulav, 2007-07-11 16:14:58

There's no one to blame other then the boring sport itself. Ask around and see how much people really cared about an over rated sport. Bring on hockey and none of this lame kicking a ball around garbage.
Bill Beroux, 2007-07-11 16:12:58

Dale Mitchell has blamed the players for their record-breaking poor performance.

The CSA has appointed Dale Mitchell to coach Canada's hope to qualify for the World Cup.

HA HA HA HA!!!!

CSA holds most of the blame for Canada's poor showing in the U20. The players cannot help being underdeveloped. Underdevelopment is a result of poor organization.
Roch, 2007-07-11 15:35:31

Players that could not pass the ball and a complete failure of the midfield to execute. That is both embarrassing and disappointing. The players were outplayed (even schooled) by superior teams from superior systems. The coaches have to work with the players they have - they can't make a purse out of a pig's ear.

Soccer in Canada is about politics, not the game. We need to turf the lot, from the very top right down to the community level, get some real dollars and build a whole new system that is about the Canadian game. The US did approx 20 yrs ago and they look very good right now. We also need to teach our volunteer coaches the game. They have to learn it is not about yelling - there is a technical side. Our coaching courses are so watered down that a monkey could pass. Canada looses 90% of their youth players due to inadequate or inappropriate coaching and league structure. Let's just start over. Repeating something endlessly and expecting a different outcome every time is called insanity.
MDK, 2007-07-11 15:00:26

WOW - there are some pretty strong criticisms here! I had no idea that these YOUTH were paid so highly to perform! Wait.....they're not paid - they do it because they love the game???? Give me a break people - so the team tanked - so what? Plenty of room for improvement then apparently. It sickens me to read the comments that are directed towards young men who aren't paid ridiculous amounts of money to entertain us.....think NHL folks! When those players stink up the joint - okay then, complain, scream and moan - they are paid millions to play the sport. In the meantime, try and put this in perspective...it was an unfortunate outcome - one I'm sure we can improve upon.
Susan, 2007-07-11 14:38:33

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