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CONCACAF Gold Cup 2023: Everything you need to know about Canada


Canada′s CONCACAF Gold Cup 2023 fixtures:


You can read all about United States, Mexico, Jamaica & Qatar by clicking on their names here.

Canada’s major tournament record:

World Cup

Best World Cup result: Group stages- 1986 & 2022.

CONCACAF Gold Cup

Best Gold Cup result: Winners- 1985 & 2000.

CONCACAF Nations League

Best Nations League result: Runners-up- 2023.

Confederations Cup

Best Confederations Cup result: Group stages- 2001.

Canada at CONCACAF Gold Cup 2023: can Canada end their wait for silverware?

Since John Herdman’s appointment as men’s national team manager in 2018, Canada have taken giant steps forward, but are still lacking a trophy to show for their efforts.

In March, 2022, the Canucks ended their 36-year wait for World Cup qualification by beating Jamaica 4-0 on a famous night in Toronto.

Les Rouges also beat both USA and Mexico at home during this campaign, drawing on the road with both too, ultimately topping the Octagonal round table, with many crowning Canada the new kings of CONCACAF.

Well, it hasn’t quite panned out like that, not yet anyway.

At the World Cup itself, the Reds lost all three matches in an admittedly tough group, with Alphonso Davies becoming the first, and so far only, Canadian man to score at a World Cup, which is rather fitting.

As one of the co-hosts of the 2026 World Cup, the Canucks will be better for the expirence out in Qatar, hoping to win a game and possibly even make the knockout stages on home turf in three summers time.

In the more immediate term, Canada are desperate to land continental silverware, having missed out on one trophy earlier this month.

Less than a fortnight ago, they beat Panama 2-0 in Las Vegas in the CONCACAF Nations League semi-finals, Jonathan David and Davies scoring, booking their place in a first major final for 23 years.

However, three days later, they were beaten 2-0 by the United States at Allegiant Stadium, as Canada’s wait for a first title since the Gold Cup of 2000 goes on.

A mere nine days after that defeat in Paradise, John Herdman’s team will kick off their 2023 Gold Cup campaign against Guadeloupe in front of an expectant home crowd in Toronto.

Les Rouges will then fly over 1,300 miles south to Houston for their other two group games against Guatemala and Cuba, with Canada widely expected to cruise into the knockout stages.

How far will they go after that?

Canada team news

Many of Canada’s more high-profile players have been left out of their Gold Cup squad, given time to rest after their exertions at the Nations League Finals.

So, Alistair Johnston, Ismaël Koné, Tajon Buchanan, Cyle Larin, Jonathan David and Alphonso Davies will all not feature at this tournament, making the team substantially and indisputably weaker.

The rest of their Europe-based stars are here though, more on them shortly, so this is still a competitive roster.

However, the face of the Canadian men’s national team for over two decades is no longer around.

Following the Nations League Final, 40 year old Atiba Hutchinson hung up his boots, with over 100 caps to his name.

He represented his country at six Gold Cups, the first came in 2003, and finally got to play at a World Cup as a 39 year old last November.

It’s going to be weird seeing Canada play going forward without their long-time captain and talisman.

This Gold Cup squad features seven uncapped players, signalling the start of a new era.

They are: Tom McGill, Dominick Zator, Zac McGraw, Moïse Bombito, Victor Loturi, Ali Ahmed and Jacen Russell-Rowe.

Canada′s key players: Milan Borjan

The player with the most caps in this squad is goalkeeper Milan Borjan who, at the age of 35, is running out of time if he wants to lift international silverware.

Since his debut in 2011, Borjan has accumulated 75 caps, only six Canadian men have more, and continues to be a consistent performer.

At club level, he’s won a league title in each of the last eight seasons, two with Ludogorets in Bulgaria before six successive Serbian SuperLiga trophies with current club Crvena zvezda.

His time at Red Star Belgrade has seen Borjan make 41 appearances in the UEFA Champions League (including qualifiers) and his high-level expirence will be key given how inexperienced most of this squad is.

Canada′s key players: Stephen Eustáquio

The hub of Canada’s midfield is Stephen Eustáquio, who will be looking to fill the large void vacated by Hutchinson.

The 26 year old joined FC Porto just 18 months, but has already won five major trophies with the Portuguese giants, starting the Taça de Portugal Final win over Braga earlier this month.

Eustáquio likes to dictate the tempo of a game from deep, but can also chip in with a goal or two, netting against Martinique, Haiti and Costa Rica at the most-recent Gold Cup two summers ago.

Given that he is, arguably, the best outfield player in this squad, les Rouges will need Eustáquio to shine at this tournament.

Canada′s key players: Junior Hoilett

With no Tajon Buchanan, Cyle Larin, Jonathan David or Alphonso Davies in this squad, the goalscoring burden will rest on the shoulders of a selection of younger players, and one veteran in particular.

Junior Hoilett is a familiar face to Premier League fans, having made 161 appearances in England’s top flight for Blackburn Rovers, Queens Park Rangers and Cardiff City, scoring 17 goals.

Now 33, he spent last season with Reading, who were relegated to EFL League One, the third-tier.

This all means Hoilett has been one of Canada’s most high-profile male players, even since choosing to play for the Canucks, instead of Jamaica, back in 2015.

Since then, he’s scored 14 goals in 55 appearances, all of which have come in competitive internationals.

He’s netted at three different editions of the Gold Cup, aiming to make that four this summer, with Hoilett’s most-recent goal for Canada coming in the 4-0 drubbing of Jamaica that secured World Cup qualification.

Canada′s possible starting line-up for CONCACAF Gold Cup 2023

Canada′s full squad for CONCACAF Gold Cup 2023

Goalkeepers

NumberNameCapsGoalsClub
1Dayne St. Clair20Minnesota United
16Tom McGill00Brighton & Hove Albion
18Milan Borjan750Crvena zvezda

Defenders

2Zachary Brault-Guillard71CF Montréal
3Sam Adekugbe411Galatasaray
4Kamal Miller340Inter Miami
5Steven Vitória414Chaves
6Dominick Zator00Korona Kielce
14Moïse Bombito00Colorado Rapids
15Zac McGraw00Portland Timbers
22Richie Laryea411Toronto
23Scott Kennedy120Jahn Regensburg

Midfielders

7Stephen Eustáquio323Porto
8David Wotherspoon111St Johnstone
12Victor Loturi00Ross County
20Ali Ahmed00Vancouver Whitecaps
21Jonathan Osorio648Toronto

Forwards

9Lucas Cavallini3618Club Tijuana
10Junior Hoilett5514Reading
11Liam Millar170FC Basel
13Jacob Shaffelburg40Nashville
17Jacen Russell-Rowe00Columbus Crew
19Charles-Andreas Brym81FC Eindhoven

CONCACAF Gold Cup 2023 Group D table

Ben Gray

Ben Gray

Arsenal fan – follow them over land and sea (and Leicester); sofa Celtic supporter; a bit of a football '"encyclopedia".


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