Experience has served Canada well

Canada’s men’s national team has performed well at the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup. Through the group phase, Canada is undefeated and confident before its quarter-final stage match against Honduras this 18 July in Philadelphia. The team traveled from Miami to Philadelphia on Saturday 11 July after finishing first in Group A.



This Saturday’s Canada-Honduras match will be broadcast live on Rogers Sportsnet (all four channels; 17.00 ET / 14.00 PT). The winner of the quarter-final match advances to the semi-final stage on 23 July in Chicago.

Canada’s men’s national team has performed well at the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup. Through the group phase, Canada is undefeated and confident before its quarter-final stage match against Honduras this 18 July in Philadelphia. The team traveled from Miami to Philadelphia on Saturday 11 July after finishing first in Group A.



This Saturday’s Canada-Honduras match will be broadcast live on Rogers Sportsnet (all four channels; 17.00 ET / 14.00 PT). The winner of the quarter-final match advances to the semi-final stage on 23 July in Chicago.



In terms of international appearances, the 2009 squad is Canada’s second-most experienced team ever to compete in a CONCACAF Gold Cup. Before the competition began, the 19 Canadian players had accumulated an average of 22.3 national appearances per player. Captain Paul Stalteri was of course the most experienced player with 74 appearances (he has added two more in the competition); Dejan Jakovic, Simeon Jackson and Joshua Wagenaar were the least experienced with two appearances each.



Canada’s most experienced team was the 2003 squad which had accumulated an average of 24.4 appearances per player before the CONCACAF Gold Cup. That team, unfortunately, did not advance beyond the group phase. By contrast, the 2000 championship team had an average of 16.6 appearances per player before the 2000 CONCACAF Gold Cup.



Canada’s 2009 squad features 12 players that have taken part in previous CONCACAF Gold Cups. Only seven players are taking part in their first CONCACAF Gold Cup, the same “rookie” total that was featured on the 2007 squad. The 2000 squad had 12 new players, in part because there were four years in between Canada’s participation at the 1996 and 2000 CONCACAF Gold Cups.



By age, Canada’s 2009 team features an average age of 26 years and seven months. Greg Sutton and Richard Hastings are the two oldest players at 32 years; Marcel de Jong, Simeon Jackson, Will Johnson and Jaime Peters are the youngest at 22.



By contrast, the 2007 squad was Canada’s oldest team at the CONCACAF Gold Cup (27 years, three months). That team had a 39-year old Pat Onstad, but also a 20-year old Roberto Giacomi. The team featured an average of 18.2 national appearances per player before the competition began. At the end of the day, the team reached the semi-final stage.



The 2000 squad was younger at 26 years, one month. Its oldest players were Onstad and Craig Forrest (both 32 at the time); its youngest player was 21-year old Dwayne De Rosario.



So what was Canada’s least experienced team at a CONCACAF Gold Cup? In 2005, Canada featured an average of just 9.9 national appearances per player. The 19-player squad featured 13 rookies taking part in their first CONCACAF Gold Cup. The team was also very young at 25 years, two months.



To date, Canada has participated in nine CONCACAF Gold Cups. Should Canada win its 2009 quarter-final match on Saturday, it will be Canada’s fourth trip to the semi-final stage. It previously reached the final four in 2000, 2002 and 2007. Canada won the CONCACAF Gold Cup in 2000.

Guidelines for the Return to Soccer

Canada Soccer outlines return to soccer guidelines. The return to soccer guidelines provide member organizations with a five-step process, including a checklist of weighted questions known as the Return to Soccer Assessment Tool.