CANADA BEAT TRINIDAD & TOBAGO, PUNCH TICKET TO COPA AMERICA

2024-04-05 · 1 min read · Copa América/Soccer
Canada defeats well-organized Trinidad

Concacaf | Getty Images via The Globe and Mail

Canada defeated Trinidad and Tobago 2-0 at Toyota Park in Frisco, Texas on the weekend, booking their spot at the 2024 Copa América that will be staged in the United States from June 20th to July 14th. Goals from Cyle Larin and Jacob Shaffelburg, and a clean sheet from goalkeeper Maxime Crépeau were the difference.
The Canadian men had 63 percent possession and an 11-1 edge in corners in the first 45 minutes but could not make anything of it. The breakthrough finally came in the 61st minute when Tajon Buchanan cut in towards the penalty box. He played the ball into a teammate in traffic, and it landed at the feet of Larin, who beat goalkeeper Denzil Smith a low shot for his Canadian men's record 29th goal.
It was a job done for Canada, although it took a while to get there. And there were some tense moments as Trinidad pressed late with goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau stopping danger man Levi Garcia in the 85th minute. Shaffelburg hammered a shot off the goalpost with Smith beaten in the 86th minute. And he eased the pressure in the 91st minute, roofing a shot for his second Canada goal as the Trinidad defense was caught short.
What does this mean for Canada? With qualifying, The Canadian men’s team will line up against World Cup champion Argentina and Lionel Messi this summer in one of the biggest international tournaments. This is South America’s version of the Euro’s which allows outside countries, such as Canada, to qualify and participate in the highly anticipated, historical tournament. Qualifying for the South American championship was vital for Canada as it has to consistently play top-tier opponents if it has any chance of putting on a competitive showing on home soil when it co-hosts the 2026 FIFA World Cup with the U.S. and Mexico.
Ranked No. 50 in the world, Canada will compete in Group A at the Copa América against No. 1 Argentina (June 20 in Atlanta), No. 33 Peru (June 25 in Kansas City) and No. 42 Chile (June 29 in Orlando). The Canada-Argentina contest is the opening match of the 16-nation tournament.
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By: Aaron Cantin

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