Canada’s goal against Brazil not enough in first U-17 test away in Brazil


Canada got a goal in Brazil, but it was not enough as they lost their opener of a two-match preparation series against Brazil in the build up to the men’s FIFA U-17 World Cup Indonesia 2023. Canada lost 3-1 to the hosts in Soracaba on Friday and will go again this Sunday. Lucas Ozimec of Oakville scored the Canada goal in the second half with an assist from Kyler Vojvodic. Theo Rigopoulos earned Canada’s Player of the Match honours.

Canada, who have qualified for back-to-back FIFA U-17 World Cups for the first time in a decade, will head to Indonesia this November for the biennial 24-nation world competition. Brazil are the reigning champions from the last edition in 2019 before the global pandemic and they are the current CONMEBOL U-17 champions from South America.

“We have to be pleased with our starting point as a group after not being together for seven months since the Concacaf Men’s Under-17 Championship,” said Andrew Olivieri, Canada Soccer’s U-17 Coach. “Brazil showed us how the small margins make a difference. We now have a chance to get after it again in two days which is exactly what we need to grow towards the FIFA U-17 World Cup.”

While Canada’s young players have spent the summer playing for their clubs at the academy or professional level, this is the first time they have come together as a group with the best players from the nation. In Brazil, the squad had just two full sessions together before they went toe-to-toe with their opponents. Brazil scored two goals on set plays.

Ozimec, who plays his football at Toronto FC Academy, scored shortly after he entered the match as a substitute with Canada trailing 2-0. It was his second career youth international goal this year. Brazil had built their 2-0 lead with goals on either side of the break, then scored again just a handful of minutes before full time.

Canada will face Brazil again this Sunday when the two sides meet at the Estádio Novelli Júnior in Itu, Brazil.

Canada Soccer’s Men’s EXCEL Program channels our nation’s exceptional players into the best soccer environments. The Canada Soccer Pathway works in collaboration with our provincial and territory partners as well as the professional clubs and academies. For Canada’s elite players, the program emphasizes player development on the pathway to representing Canada’s Men’s National Team in international soccer.

Canada Soccer’s Men’s National Team are three-time Concacaf champions, previously winning the 1985 Concacaf Championship, 2000 Concacaf Gold Cup, and 2021-22 Concacaf Qualifiers. Canada most recently qualified for the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar and have previously featured at the 1976 and 1984 Olympic Games, the 1986 FIFA World Cup, and the 2001 FIFA Confederations Cup.

Canada Soccer’s Men’s National Youth Teams have won two Concacaf titles: both the 1986 and 1996 Concacaf Men’s Youth Championships. Canada have qualified for 16 FIFA men’s youth tournaments: eight editions of the FIFA U-20 World Cup and eight editions of the FIFA U-17 World Cup. Canada most recently qualified for the FIFA U-17 World Cup Indonesia 2023 in February of this year.