Canada Loses Friendly as Montreal Wins Cup

IMFC wins their 8th cup and qualifies for the CCL as Canada falls to Costa Rica
by Henrik Lonne   |   Thursday, May 30, 2013

Made in Canada - coverage of the Canadian MLS, NASL & USL Clubs, CSL, PCSL, Canadian Championship & Canada National Teams

A very young Canada squad welcomed Costa Rica in a friendly match in Edmonton on Tuesday, but ended up losing the game, 1-0.

Canada controlled possession, passed well and stood firm in defense, but a lack of sharpness in front of goal and an inability to deal with the gamesmanship of Jairo Arrieta, which led to the decisive Costa Rican penalty, downed the Canadians.

The CMNT also wasted the opportunity to play with a 1-man advantage, as Canada’s Nik Ledgerwood didn't keep his cool when Costa Rica’s Christopher Meneses shoved him in the face. The entire episode led both players to a red card. Had Ledgerwood not reacted so hastily, it might have been a different story.

Losing always sucks. But Canada’s defensive effort has improved and Costa Rica needed a penalty to win. Other than the obvious need for target practice, dealing with the play that led to the penalty and the red card should be a part of Canada’s biggest priorities. Without the penalty and the red card for Ledgerwood, who knows what Canada could have done with the game?

Voyage over for Vancouver

Yesterday, the Montreal Impact and the Vancouver Whitecaps battled it out at BC Place for the Voyageurs Cup. While Vancouver went into the game rested as it had a bye-week, Montreal came out red-hot from a 5-3 win over the Philadelphia Union.

Vancouver pressed forward, knowing that it had to win the game in order win the cup, and created the majority of chances throughout the game. The Caps also managed to take the lead twice, through goals by Camilo and Diego Kobayashi, but Felipe and Hassoun Camara tied it up each time for Montreal.

While Vancouver had almost double the attempts on goal than Montreal, it only had 1 more shot on target, showing the Impact’s defensive skill at dealing with the Whitecaps’ attacking pressure.

With the 2-2 tie, Montreal won the tournament due to the away goals, and won its first Voyageurs Cup as an MLS team, while Vancouver has never won it in any incarnation.

Given Vancouver’s difficulties in MLS, not playing in the CONCACAF Champions League might be blessing in disguise, as the roster won’t be stretched thin. Yet that will still be a bittersweet comfort for the Vancouver faithful.

Similarly, it will be interesting to see how Montreal deals with the extra games and whether or not it will become a distraction from its successful run in MLS. Regardless, the extra games should be to the benefit of Karl Ouimette and Maxim Tissot, who played well and should have a better chance of getting more playing time either in MLS or the CCL.

Women’s team welcomes USA

The Canadian women’s national team will welcome the US Women’s National Team to Toronto this Sunday in a match labelled as “The Rematch."

While the US is a better team, it will be interesting how a proper home field advantage for the Canadians – and the fact that both teams now have members playing regularly in the NWSL – will affect the game.

Given how the Olympic semi-final ended, there is plenty of pride at stake, especially for the Canadians. And with the support of a Canadian crowd, I think Canada’s women can win the game.

Henrik LONNE

Copenhagen Business School
Club Domestic:
AGF Aarhus
Club Foreign:
Toronto FC
Born and raised in Denmark, the US performance in the 2002 World Cup dragged Henrik into the world of North American soccer. Subsequent trips to Canada made him a Toronto FC fan from abroad. The passion he now has for MLS outshines most European leagues.