Canadian Men’s Soccer Team Fail In Olympic Bid
The Canadian men’s soccer team have failed in their quest to reach the Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Goals from Uriel Antuna and Johan Vasquez saw Canada defeated 2-0 by Mexico in the semi-finals of the CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualifying Championship on Sunday in Guadalajara meaning it is now 37 years since they reached the finals.
Canada had not played in the finals since 1984 and will be forced to wait at least another three years before making an appearance.
Canada entered the game with a 0-4-2 record against Mexico at the under-23 level in CONCACAF Olympic qualifying since 1992.
Mexico had never lost to Canada on home soil but the visitors defended resolutely until the 57th minute when a poor pass from goalkeeper James Pantemis went straight to the opposition and Antuna, who has scored eight goals for the senior national side in 16 appearances, dispatched the ball into the net.
The home side doubled their lead seven minutes later when Vasquez rose highest to head home a free-kick as Mexico’s dominance paid off.
Mexico will now take their place at the finals in Tokyo, along with the other semi-final winners Honduras who defeated the United States 2-1.
Canada coach Mauro Biello said before the game that it was a ‘David and Goliath story’ and that he recognised his side were underdogs.
And that was how it proved as the Mexicans outshot Canada 19-3, and 6-1 on target.
/Stewart Sports news editor