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The Journey

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Caught it part of the way through. Very well produced. I was a little guy when we made the WC so it was neat to hear what their frame of mind was, how they got there and what it was like to play against Platini.

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According to an online tv guide, it looks like TSN will show it several times over the next week, with the next viewing on Wednesday, 1:30pm EST:

30 TSN Wed 7/5 1:30 PM

407 TSN Wed 7/5 1:30 PM

408 TSNHD Wed 7/5 1:30 PM

503 TSNHD Wed 7/5 1:30 PM

30 TSN Sun 7/9 4:00 AM

407 TSN Sun 7/9 4:00 AM

408 TSNHD Sun 7/9 4:00 AM

503 TSNHD Sun 7/9 4:00 AM

30 TSN Wed 7/12 12:00 AM

407 TSN Wed 7/12 12:00 AM

408 TSNHD Wed 7/12 12:00 AM

503 TSNHD Wed 7/12 12:00 AM

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Very interesting for what I saw. I love the way Tony Waiters looked at that disallowed goal against Brazil in 1984 Olympics.

It's a shame that those men have never had some kind of reunion organize by the CSA (this was stated in an article posted a few weeks ago on this board). What they did was amazing and I hope I,ll have the chance to see a canadian team in a WC in my life.

BTW, I'm not sure what's the problem with the fact that we didn't scored a goal during this WC, we're talking about soccer not basketball, teams who have a 3 games scoring drought are quite common in soccer. And it's not like we lost all games by 4 goals. I think our media are quite naive with that, always stating that our first WC appearance was a shame because we didn't scored........

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the 84 olympic flashback made the program for me. it rarely gets mentioned but the Brazil game is one of Canada's top 5 moments in football.

I had just got the football bug from seeing the 82 WC. With games such as Brazil/Italy (probably the best WC game ever) and Germany/France, I was pumped for the sport.

But these were the days of no internet and no wall-to-wall Olympic coverage. I remember waiting and waiting for CBC to show the game in between all the other Olympic stuff. Even though, in total, CBC probably only showed 20 mins of the game, it will forever remain etched in my memory. Dale Mitchell's dead ball skills hasn't been matched since by a Canadian player.

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Thankfully they are repeating it, because it is 1 hour long but they aired only the last 30 minutes (minus unusually short commercials) due to the England vs. Portugal extra time and PKs.

It was much better than I expected. But they spent a lot less time on actually being at the World Cup than I expected, not really getting into it until the last 15 minutes or so, and not giving any details about any of the games beyond a few about the first one (they didn't even give the final scores of the last two). As its title suggests, I guess this was indeed about the journey to get there; now we need another piece on actually being there.

I finally got to see the disallowed goal in the 1984 Olympics that is often mentioned here. It was a worse call than I imagined. However, I haven't seen anyone mention that the free kick was a bad call in the first place. It seems justice was served.

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Guest Jeffery S.
quote:Originally posted by loyola

BTW, I'm not sure what's the problem with the fact that we didn't scored a goal during this WC, we're talking about soccer not basketball, teams who have a 3 games scoring drought are quite common in soccer. And it's not like we lost all games by 4 goals. I think our media are quite naive with that, always stating that our first WC appearance was a shame because we didn't scored........

I have to agree, though for years I also felt badly about that. Next time we get to the World Cup we can set some modest goals for when there: score a goal, get a point. I remember the fans from Ecuador in Barcelona last WC, saying how glad they were to be there and hoping for a first point, a first goal. Well this time they got that and more. I am hoping our experience next time we make it is similar, as it is pretty well all we can reasonably aspire to, we would always be pushed to get out of the first round.

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quote:Would it be unrealistic to think that Canada could get 4 pts. in a group involving such teams as France, Switzerland, South Korea, or Spain, Ukraine, and Tunisia?

How would they have faired in the Germany or England groups?

Are you talking about the 1986 team or the current team?

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Well that was a delight to watch. I really appreciated the old clips from the Olympics and the WC qualifying.

The only beef I have is in regards to the comment about Ladbrokes offering payouts of 300-1 for Canada to score at least one goal. Those odds must be pure nonsense!

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Canada just not game enough: Soccer's appeal still arrives only once every four years

Mark Spector

National Post

1002 words

6 July 2006

National Post


S1 / Front


© 2006 National Post . All Rights Reserved.

In the hour before yesterday's France-Portugal semi-final, TSN aired a documentary on the Canadian team that made our only World Cup appearance back in 1986.

Bob Lenarduzzi took us back to the time we took Brazil to penalty kicks at the 1984 Olympics, before losing. Coach Tony Waiters discussed the big win over Honduras the next year that qualified Canada for World Cup '86. Then our goalless trip through Mexico, with losses to France, Hungary and the Soviet Union that were tougher than anybody thought they would be. A plucky, emerging soccer nation went down with a fight on its first trip to the big show, complimented by gracious winners all along the way.

It was the kind of mosaic that should have served as perfect pregame for World Cup 2006, the way the CBC plays vintage Grey Cup games during Grey Cup week involving the two teams in that year's CFL final. A celebration of the past before the celebration of the present.

There is, of course, this one little problem that Canadian soccer has. There is no present, you see. We are so deep in the world's soccer rankings at No. 83, that oblivion has set in. The rest of the world doesn't care about us, and frankly we don't care much either, perfectly content to tune into the European Championships, World Cups, and whatever other soccer we can find being played by a country that has a clue how to play it.

So that Team Canada pregame show from 1986 hangs there, with nothing to follow outside of a win at the Gold Cup one year, a pretty good women's team, and a list of men's team head coaches that rivals the Boston Bruins.

Meanwhile, they're building a new soccer stadium in Toronto, where Toronto FC will be the newest team in Major League Soccer. The World Cup continues to get fantastic television ratings in Canada. And is there a kid on your block who doesn't tie on cleats and pull on a shiny soccer uniform twice a week?

There is a dichotomy there that's hard to figure. The more kids play, the worse we get internationally. The more international soccer turns on Canadians, the less we care about our own struggling side?

Perhaps it is that even though Canadians enjoy watching soccer at its zenith in the World Cup, we have little interest in watching it at the level our national team plays at. In Toronto, where the national team will call its new stadium home beginning in 2007, a Canada v. Jamaica match -- or Costa Rica or Trinidad and Tobago or any CONCACAF team -- traditionally draws a small crowd, with 90% cheering the country from which they came.

So even at home, Team Canada is often treated like the road team. Which they are, really, when you realize that our best players must all fly in from Europe to congregate under the national team banner. This is a malady that may never be solved, though the hope is that with an MLS team in Toronto some of our pros will stay home and play.

But will the top Canadian pros stay? They have professional hockey in all the major European countries, but don't all of their best players come to North America to play in the National Hockey League? So why would a top Canadian turn down an invite to Europe to stay home in the MLS?

To be closer to his 83rd-ranked national team?

So the cycle continues: Our national team coach has to beg and borrow to free up all of his players who are dispersed across the soccer world, then get them home to Canada where they can usually only find mediocre competition for Canada to play. The players get here, jet-lagged after a six- or seven-hour time change, and before they have adapted they're on a plane back home to Middlesbrough or Everton, where the transAtlantic travel leaves them fatigued for days -- and their club teams hinting that a trip home might not have been such a good idea, not when it affects their paying gig.

So it gets harder and harder to get players for tune-up games, the team can't prepare the way it would like to, and another Olympic or World Cup cycle passes with Canada failing to qualify.

Is that why we care just enough to tune in every four years, but like the Olympic sports, Canadians can turn off their interest through the rest of the quadrennial? In a culture where our hockey heroes can take a puck in the face, get stitched up, and come back after missing just one shift, does the pleading and diving that has polluted the beautiful game keep us from falling in love with soccer?

I'll admit it. Just as the back and forth of Germany-Italy really began to grab hold of me --"Look at the action," the commentator marvelled. "There's no midfield!" -- some princess in a soccer uniform got a boot in the shin pad and fell to the ground, writhing and clutching his head.

Or perhaps it's our problem. Maybe, like Americans and hockey, we can't get used to the camera angles that show the build-up that true soccer fans want to see. Like the Fox Puck, maybe we can't get our heads around the fact that you don't have to watch the player with the ball (or see the puck), but the flow of the players can tell you what direction the action is flowing.

It's easy to love soccer for a month every four years. But in Canada, it's clear that the game isn't lovable enough the rest of the time to hold our attention.


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