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Mitchell Announces U-20's for Porto Tourny......


Winnipeg Fury

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Canadian Soccer Association ? l‚Association canadienne de soccer

Media Release ? Communiqué

For Immediate Release ˆ Wednesday, April 05, 2006

For more information please contact:

Earl Cochrane - (613) 237-4580 ext: 239

Richard Ivan - (613) 237-4580 ext: 242

Mitchell Announces U-20 Squad for Porto International Tournament

Ottawa, Ontario ˆ Canada‚s U-20 National Team head coach, Dale Mitchell, has released his roster for the team‚s upcoming trip to the 24th Porto International Tournament from April 7-16th.

The Canadian‚s will play three games in four days against the U-20 teams from Norway, China, and hosts Portugal.

The trip will be the first real test of 2006 for the U-20s since the Chivas Cup in Guadalajara, Mexico in January of this year and will certainly allow Mitchell an opportunity to get a good look at his squad in a very competitive environment.

Several players, for various reasons, were unavailable to Mitchell for selection.

Ipswich Town‚s Jaime Peters, Hibernian‚s Keegan Ayre, and Rushden and Diamonds striker Simeon Jackson will all remain with their clubs while St. Pauli midfielder Jonathan Beaulieu-Bourgault, Ontario defender Nana Attakora-Gyan, and Fairfield University midfielder Kerr McLeod are all carrying injuries and were unavailable for Mitchell‚s squad.

Toronto-native and highly touted FC Porto defender, Steven Vitoria, was invited to attend but again declined the invitation to participate in the training camp and tournament.

"As we build towards the U-20 World Cup in 2007, our players will have great opportunities to compete against some of the top countries in world youth soccer,‰ said Canadian Head Coach Dale Mitchell. „The Kings Cup in Portugal is certainly a chance for our guys to measure themselves against some of the best from Europe and Asia."

Roster

# Pos. Name Club DOB Hometown Prov.

1 GK BEGOVIC, Asmir La Louviere (Belgium) 20-Jun-87 Edmonton AB

2 D OLIVEIRA, Kyle National Training Centre - Ontario 4-Mar-88 Oakville ON

3 D O'CONNOR, Kent 1860 Munich (Germany) 5-Mar-87 North Vancouver BC

4 D LUMLEY, Stephen National Training Centre - Ontario 16-Apr-87 Mississauga ON

5 D EDGAR, David Newcastle United FC (England) 19-May-87 Kitchener ON

6 M NUNEZ, Cristian National Training Centre - Quebec 07-Jul-88 Montreal QC

7 M LENSKY, Jacob Celtic FC (Scotland) 16-Dec-88 Vancouver BC

8 F ELLIOTT, Alex University of Portland (USA) 24-Apr-87 Vancouver BC

9 F LOMBARDO, Andrea Perugia Calcio (Italy) 23-May-87 Toronto ON

10 F JOHNSON, Will SC Heerenveen (Netherlands) 21-Jan-87 Woodridge IL

11 M BABINEAU, Olivier University of Montreal 12-Jul-87 Dieppe NB

12 M MAYARD, Pierre-Rudolph National Training Centre - Quebec 21-Feb-88 Laval QC

13 M GOMEZ, Emmanuel River Plate (Argentina) 30-Mar-87 Victoria BC

14 F REVIVO, Daniel Winthrop University (USA) 23-Mar-87 Richmond Hill ON

15 M/F D'AGOSTINO, Mike University of Kentucky (USA) 1-Jul-87 Langley BC

16 M McCALLUM, Gavin Yeovil Town FC (England) 24-Aug-87 Mississauga ON

17 D LORETH, Joey Oregon State University (USA) 19-Jan-87 Victoria BC

22 GK CAULFIELD, Stefan Lynn University (USA) 19-Jun-87 Toronto ON

STAFF

DALZIEL, Steve - Head of Delegation

MITCHELL, Dale - Head Coach

DASOVIC, Nick - Assistant Coach

MULDOON, Kevin - Equipment Manager/GK Coach

CANNON, Eddie - Athletic Therapist

NUTT, Dave - National Teams Administrator

Matches

April 12 - CANADA vs. Norway

Minicipal Stadium of Bateria - Porto, Portugal @ 3:00 PM

April 13 - CANADA vs. China

Stadium of Rebordosa - Porto, Portugal @ 4:00 PM

April 14 - CANADA vs. Portugal

Municipal Stadium of Povoa de Varzim - Porto, Portugal @ 11:30 AM

Broadcasting and PA Announcement ˆ Please note that the official title of the U-20 World Championship in 2007 is ŒFIFA U-20 World Cup Canada 2007‚. Any reference to the tournament should be made using this official FIFA title.

The Canadian Soccer Association ? l‚Association canadienne de soccer

www.canadasoccer.com <http://www.canadasoccer.com/>

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quote:Originally posted by Winnipeg Fury

Toronto-native and highly touted FC Porto defender, Steven Vitoria, was invited to attend but again declined the invitation to participate in the training camp and tournament.

(...)

13 M GOMEZ, Emmanuel River Plate (Argentina) 30-Mar-87 Victoria BC

So much for Jeffrey's accusations.....

Interesting to see how this team does against some quality opposition, good preparation for the Brazil games in may too.

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quote:Originally posted by El Hombre

Really</u> happy to see Lensky, O'Connor and Edgar there.

And the CSA, for all their faults, are getting better at giving a little more information in these releases (vis-a-vis situations like Vitoria).

Agreed El Hombre, on both counts. This saves the obligatory two pages of speculation after any roster is announced. Great news about Lensky. Looks like Vitoria is (ahem) "keeping his options open".

Also explains the absense of 89 staple Nana Attakora from the Scotland trip.

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It looks like Mitchell has a carrot and stick thing going here. With the tournament in Canada next year the players want to be on the team and from the looks of the squad and the six others mentioned (Peters, Ayre, Jackson, Beaulieu-Bourgeault, Attakora-Gyan and Mcleod) and the two decline/not yet interested ( Vittoria, DeGuzeman) it is going to be difficult to make the team. That in turn is pushing players to come when asked, such as Lensky and McCallum ( both of whom I am very pleased to see).

It looks like a strong team for this tourney and an even stronger team next year, all to the good.

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quote:Originally posted by loyola

So much for Jeffrey's accusations.....

In the case of Vitoria, I am not sure that these accusations are put to rest, the lad has all but committed to Portugal and i see no indication taht tis is not simply a matter of closing the barn door after the horse has bolted.

I will say that I am not convinced that Jeffrey is entirely off base - although in some cases i'd agree he is on very thin ice - in his assertions that the CSA ignore latin players, although I think it is more a matter of having a preference for a certain style of play, a phsyicality (is that a word?) more in keeping with the British style. This would work against latin players who are more likely to fit outside that sterotype and players like Hargreaves who were cut - admittedly a half dozen or more years ago - not because of skill but because of size and strength.

I'd like to think that we are moving away from that, but I am not convinced that this has not been the trend, nor that Jeffrey is completely off base in identifying it. Overstating, certainly in some cases IMO, but I thnk there is at least a kernel of truth there.

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Guest Jeffery S.

Am I a subject of conversation in this thread? That would seem off-topic to me.

I am glad to see Manny Gómez, we have no idea how he's been doing. Also Lensky, another curiosity with a lot of promise.

Vitoria was already called and accepted to go with Portugal, if had not already committed he would have kept his options open a bit longer.

Some completely unfamiliar names in there too, interesting to see.

Can't tell you how tempted I am to take a trip to Portugal, but my Easter flights are a bit steep...

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quote:Originally posted by youllneverwalkalone

Looks like a strong squad. One name I wonder about is Vincent Cournoyer. My understanding is that he's an 87 and he's training with the reserves at his club team in Belgium.

I was also wondering about Cournoyer who's with Mouscron reserve side and he's an 87. His father said on the Impactsoccer.com forum that the U-20's coaches were aware of him and they were following him closely. He also said that Vincent is having some papers/Visa problems and he can't play at the moment but he's training with the team.

So it's up to Mitchell if he wants to call him, but I must say that i'm surprise to see that Caulfield kid get a call since it's the first time we've heard of him and he didn't play NCAA soccer in 2005.

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quote:Originally posted by loyola

Jeffrey S. was suggesting that Vitoria was ignore by the CSA in this thread : http://www.canadian-soccer.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=9027

And it has been said that Vitoria was invited to at least 2 camps with the U-20's. If the guy refuse, what can the CSA do about it?

There was nothing in that thread that I would take as any indication that young Mr. Vitoria was actually called in the past. A few vague mentions of a rumour, an fuzzy IIRC but nothing to take as anything more significant than internet gossip.

And I do agree that the player is always responsible for his choices, whether the CSA has behaved bady or not. But that does not absolve the CSA from criticism if - and I use the word "if" deliberately - they have been incompetent in the matter. To me the question of whether or not Vitoria pick Canada or Portugal is secondary. The question is did the CSA do the job and identify him as a prospect, give him the opportunity to feel that the CSA was interested in him and his development as a player and give him opportunity to succeed on his own merits as a player. If - and again I use the word "if" deliberately - they did that, then they are blameless. But if they did not, then it raises the question of competence and they should be held to task.

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Well, just for fun I decided to take a look at how many players D. Mitchell has seen since the England Camp and it gives me 40 players were invited at least once to one of these camps: England, Toronto during the Christmas break, Chivas Cup and the Porto tournament.

I think it's an impressive pool of players and DM might find a few others before the tournament starts.

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It must sound funny, but they're certainly not the youngest crop are they? Mitchell is bringing the older lads out (as available) for this wee tourny with an eye for 2007 it seems. Should be a quite interesting watch.

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A great looking lineup even without the likes of Peters, Jackson, JBB, etc.

Our 2007 U20 squad looks to be the deepest and most talented in history. I can't wait to see the boys live in a little over a year's time.

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Always nice to see a lot of big club names next to those of our young players. The addition of Jacob Lensky was a pleasant surprise, and nice to see our River Plate player in the squad too. Have to figure the latter must be a wizard the ball on his feet to be a part of that organization.

Very much looking forward to seeing the Brazil matches later on in the Spring on Sportsnet.

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quote:Originally posted by loyola

Well, the rumour plus the "again" in the CSA article seems to indicate that he was at least call for the England camp in October 2005. Before being with FC Porto, he was training at the NTC in Ontario

That is a reasonable surmise, but unless I've messed up my timelines, Vitoria went to Portugal's U-20 camp in the fall. I don't think he was capped - obviously he wasn't if Canada is still barking up that tree.

In any event, this is a side tangent, and largely irrelevant to the thread so my apologies for taking it further along than it needed to have gone. This does look like one of the strongest youth teams Canada has put together and when you factor in the players who are not there I am thinking it becomes the strongest.

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Guest Jeffery S.

I will say this though: it is totally unusual for the CSA to point to a specific person who has refused a call-up, especially as this person has not been in the news, as it looks like they are covering their butts and their image at the expense of the individual. It also looks, seen from here, that they are responding to criticisms on a fan forum. If not, it is like answering a question that has not been asked. That is poor sportmanship on their part, and an abuse of their position of privilege.

Why have they not specifically come out and said that they did not call up Jonathan de Guzman for this tournament because he refuses to commmit to Canada yet? Or that they did and that once again he feels he needs to be with his club? I think the reasons are clear: they don't want to alienate him, they are going soft on him. Which is good. With Vitoria they don't really give a damn about alienating him as they already have, it seems, and know he has opted for his chances with another nation that has welcomed him. So they take a shot at him.

That looks a bit cheap to me.

In the same line of argument: the CSA specifically mentions Vitoria, who has only been a topic of conversation here and on a few Big Soccer threads referring to Canadian-Portuguese (some good ones there too). Which implies they are responding to us fans (they single out no other refusal/doubter). Couldn't we just as well argue that the call-ups of Gómez from River and others also are a reaction to criticisms that they are discriminating?

Ie, this does not "prove" they do not discriminate, as some are arguing, it "proves" that if you call them on their discriminations they'll react to rectify.

This is not too unusual. Every national program in the world reacts in call-ups to press pressure and fan pressure. Clubs do it as well, with press and fans virtually putting certain players in a squad that a coach is not so sure about. So it is a good thing I'd say. Maybe we are getting somewhere.

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you are losing your mind Jeffrey....i imagine you surfing the net, scanning images of the JFK assination and looking for Pipe on the grassy knowl..

The CSA has frequently mentioned in the pass that they have invited De Guzman to participate and been in contact with him...and that he has said no.

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quote:Originally posted by Jeffrey S.

I will say this though: it is totally unusual for the CSA to point to a specific person who has refused a call-up, especially as this person has not been in the news, as it looks like they are covering their butts and their image at the expense of the individual. It also looks, seen from here, that they are responding to criticisms on a fan forum. If not, it is like answering a question that has not been asked. That is poor sportmanship on their part, and an abuse of their position of privilege.

Why have they not specifically come out and said that they did not call up Jonathan de Guzman for this tournament because he refuses to commmit to Canada yet? Or that they did and that once again he feels he needs to be with his club? I think the reasons are clear: they don't want to alienate him, they are going soft on him. Which is good. With Vitoria they don't really give a damn about alienating him as they already have, it seems, and know he has opted for his chances with another nation that has welcomed him. So they take a shot at him.

That looks a bit cheap to me.

In the same line of argument: the CSA specifically mentions Vitoria, who has only been a topic of conversation here and on a few Big Soccer threads referring to Canadian-Portuguese (some good ones there too). Which implies they are responding to us fans (they single out no other refusal/doubter). Couldn't we just as well argue that the call-ups of Gómez from River and others also are a reaction to criticisms that they are discriminating?

Ie, this does not "prove" they do not discriminate, as some are arguing, it "proves" that if you call them on their discriminations they'll react to rectify.

Perhaps they have not specifically mentioned DeGuzman in this release because he has been discussed in the media ad nausea (radio, press,TV), etc...). I think everyone associated with Canadian soccer knows his situation. They have also done so much more extensively than with Vitoria. Vitoria is relatively unknown to the Canadian public, but the mere fact that he is with Porto does make him high profile, regardless whether the casual fan is aware of him at this point. Obviously many coaches and insiders across Canada know of him.

To suggest that the CSA are acting 'unsportsmanlike' by providing transparency is ridiculous. When nothing is said you slander them with baseless accusations of bigotry. When they provide transparency and state that a player has 'again refused,' you call them 'unsportmanlike and a 'cheap shot.'

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