Jump to content

Recommended Posts

I find it interesting that they're starting the first round in June before the WCQ draw (which is in July).

Lots of posts already so I won't beat a dead horse, but in short bullet point form:

- Pleased to see we have meaningful WCQ games this year, opportunity to cap people and gel before the semi final round.

- Level of concern that we might be eliminated from WCQ this year on a scale of 1-10: 2 (already mentioned but if we can't get out of the first round we might as well accept the fact that we are way worse than we ever imagined).

- Overall I think this format is better than 2010 (and 2006/2002), but the net result could very well be the same. I don't see these changes being as positive as the original plan for 2014 that was scrapped.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 137
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

I find it interesting that they're starting the first round in June before the WCQ draw (which is in July).

Lots of posts already so I won't beat a dead horse, but in short bullet point form:

- Pleased to see we have meaningful WCQ games this year, opportunity to cap people and gel before the semi final round.

- Level of concern that we might be eliminated from WCQ this year on a scale of 1-10: 2 (already mentioned but if we can't get out of the first round we might as well accept the fact that we are way worse than we ever imagined).

- Overall I think this format is better than 2010 (and 2006/2002), but the net result could very well be the same. I don't see these changes being as positive as the original plan for 2014 that was scrapped.

Ideally we are going to have Gold Cup matches (hopefully going far), maybe a friendly or two and then jump into more matches vs. minnows then we'll have some prep vs. real opponents before going into our semi final group. Bottom line is that we will be playing more competitive matches than any of our semi final opponents and that is a positive for me.

If our boys play up to their potential this new format shouldn't matter, lets face it the format didn't stop us from qualifying in past years it was our piss poor performance.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't like it. Too much depends on the semi-final group draw. To those saying the "the format doesn't matter, you have to beat these teams anyway" that's not really true. There's a difference between having to play a team and having to finish ahead of a team. 2006, the only teams Trinidad had to finish ahead of throughout qualifying were Dominican Republic, St. Kitts, St. VAG, Panama, and Guatemala before playing Bahrain. Even though Costa Rica didn't qualify in 2010, their path to the intercontinental play-off only required them to finish ahead of two competent opponents (El Salvador and Trinidad) with a cupcake semi-final group. Were either of these teams any more deserving than Jamaica was in 2010 qualifying losing out to Mexico for a spot in the hex on goal difference? Failing to finish ahead of HON and MEX in one stage means elimination while finishing behind those two in another stage means a ticket to a play-off. Not really fair is it?

To be clear, I don't advocate an easier path. I advocate a fairer path. The unbalanced groups DO matter. Either make it a double hex to reduce the chances of unbalanced groups or find a way to seed the semi-final group stage using some sort of common sense index.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Don't like it. Too much depends on the semi-final group draw. To those saying the "the format doesn't matter, you have to beat these teams anyway" that's not really true. There's a difference between having to play a team and having to finish ahead of a team. 2006, the only teams Trinidad had to finish ahead of throughout qualifying were Dominican Republic, St. Kitts, St. VAG, Panama, and Guatemala before playing Bahrain. Even though Costa Rica didn't qualify in 2010, their path to the intercontinental play-off only required them to finish ahead of two competent opponents (El Salvador and Trinidad) with a cupcake semi-final group. Were either of these teams any more deserving than Jamaica was in 2010 qualifying losing out to Mexico for a spot in the hex on goal difference? Failing to finish ahead of HON and MEX in one stage means elimination while finishing behind those two in another stage means a ticket to a play-off. Not really fair is it?

To be clear, I don't advocate an easier path. I advocate a fairer path. The unbalanced groups DO matter. Either make it a double hex to reduce the chances of unbalanced groups or find a way to seed the semi-final group stage using some sort of common sense index.

Good points, I'm not a big fan of the Hex, it needs to be changed but this is what we have this time! I'm posting late in the thread and many good points have been made for and against but the bottom line is this is the way it's going to be this time so deal with it! There are many here who have advocated playing some CONCACAF minnows in friendlies for various reasons and now they're on the schedule! We can ***** and moan all we want but here are the matches, let's go out and win them, get some more experience, cap players, spread the prelim matches around and get some momentum!

Link to post
Share on other sites
Good points, I'm not a big fan of the Hex, it needs to be changed but this is what we have this time! I'm posting late in the thread and many good points have been made for and against but the bottom line is this is the way it's going to be this time so deal with it! There are many here who have advocated playing some CONCACAF minnows in friendlies for various reasons and now they're on the schedule! We can ***** and moan all we want but here are the matches, let's go out and win them, get some more experience, cap players, spread the prelim matches around and get some momentum!

Like I've said earlier in thisd thread we need to play minnows to boost our ranking before the CONCACAF draw...not after.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Like I've said earlier in thisd thread we need to play minnows to boost our ranking before the CONCACAF draw...not after.

Yes but we didn't so my point is let's move on and do the business now! We have to look at these games as opportunities and use them the best we can to our advantage! I for one as a fan look forward to more MNT matches no matter who they're against! Yes we could end up in a tricky group with the often mentioned Guatemala! I'll never forget the away leg when we gave up a rather dubious penalty in the 1990 qualifying cycle, then we gave up an early away goal and we were up against it! We have only ourselves to blame for our ranking at the present time, i'm looking forward to the extra matches!

Link to post
Share on other sites
Yes but we didn't so my point is let's move on and do the business now! We have to look at these games as opportunities and use them the best we can to our advantage! I for one as a fan look forward to more MNT matches no matter who they're against! Yes we could end up in a tricky group with the often mentioned Guatemala! I'll never forget the away leg when we gave up a rather dubious penalty in the 1990 qualifying cycle, then we gave up an early away goal and we were up against it! We have only ourselves to blame for our ranking at the present time, i'm looking forward to the extra matches!

What do you think the Guatemalans would be saying if this was their board? Probably something about not wanting to play those physical Canadians so early.

My two cents: The qualifying format is what is will be. I'm in the camp that says if we can't finish first in a preliminary group with the likes of Belize and the Caymans, then there won't be any discussion about format...it'll all be about drumming the CSA and Stephen Hart out of the country. And realistically, we might have one semi-tough side in the first group if there is a proper draw made at FIFA. Imagine the route an African or even an Asian country has to cut through to qualify?

Link to post
Share on other sites
What do you think the Guatemalans would be saying if this was their board? Probably something about not wanting to play those physical Canadians so early.

My two cents: The qualifying format is what is will be. I'm in the camp that says if we can't finish first in a preliminary group with the likes of Belize and the Caymans, then there won't be any discussion about format...it'll all be about drumming the CSA and Stephen Hart out of the country. And realistically, we might have one semi-tough side in the first group if there is a proper draw made at FIFA. Imagine the route an African or even an Asian country has to cut through to qualify?

This. At the end of the day, If Canada can't finish ahead of teams ranked below the top 6 in CONCACAF, it doesn't deserved to be the final six. At the end of the day, we have to be good enough to be there to be there. I'm sick and tired of this defeatist attitude. Oh well we might get put into a group with Guatemala. Screw that.

You know what, all the teams that made the Hex last time were able to be Guatemala and similar teams. Canada needs to be able to do the same.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I didn't realized when i first read the proposed (and posted my comments) format that it would indeed mean more game for Canada. But they are against minnow. So that goes against my arguments for the need to play more games but my overall point still stands because its not playing the minnows that you improve. Unlike Europe, South America and Africa, Concacaf has more minnows as percentage of all sides in the regions.

I agree with an earlier post about picking up bad habits when you play minnows. I might add that you also get a false read of the team and miss the opportunity to address issues or problem areas. Take the example of that game versus Belize in Kingston in 2004.

The way I recall the match unfolding was that we completely dominated the possession in the first half of the first game but failed to convert many (if any). The bulk of the goals came later in the second half. Of course no one would dare complain or question the outcome of match where you win decisively 4-0. But you would expect a minnow like Belize to be at a severe disadvantage in terms of fitness levels and preparation so as the game wears on, they will make mistakes and/wilt, and that's when we got our goals. So In retrospect, we took away the fact that we won decisively and dominated the match. What we missed was the fact that, in the absence of a huge discrepancy in fitness levels and preparation, we had trouble scoring/converting or creating high quality chance. And that was ultimately what caught up to us in the semi final, we could create in the final third, we scores only 2 goals in the first 4 matches of the semi final round.

It would have been more helpful to play a couple of friendlies against Belarus and Estonia than two matches versus BELIZE

Link to post
Share on other sites

OK, can we seriously stop with all the "if we can't beat Guatemala" ****? That's not the point of all this, the point is that our chances of getting a group of death in the SF round in this format is much higher than it is in the proposed format where there would be 4 groups of 4 instead of only 3 groups. The proposed format would have made for a better balance among the groups and given us a chance to get more meaningful games in and in a better position to catch lightning in a bottle to qualify.

Link to post
Share on other sites
OK, can we seriously stop with all the "if we can't beat Guatemala" ****? That's not the point of all this, the point is that our chances of getting a group of death in the SF round in this format is much higher than it is in the proposed format where there would be 4 groups of 4 instead of only 3 groups. The proposed format would have made for a better balance among the groups and given us a chance to get more meaningful games in and in a better position to catch lightning in a bottle to qualify.

Our lower ranking may actually help us in avoiding a group of death, remember the lower ranked sides last time around that got easier groups than us? You never know

Link to post
Share on other sites

We seem to be petrified of the Guats! There are too many what ifs and should haves and would haves on here, the format is set! As for the point of picking up bad habits against minnows, isn't that up to a good quality coach to make sure that doesn't happen? Hart has expanded the player pool and that may come in handy with some of these qualifying matches against the so called minnows due to player availability! I'm not sure some of our Euro based players will want to fly to the Antilles or wherever to help in a demolition of one of these weaker teams!

Link to post
Share on other sites
This. At the end of the day, If Canada can't finish ahead of teams ranked below the top 6 in CONCACAF, it doesn't deserved to be the final six. At the end of the day, we have to be good enough to be there to be there. I'm sick and tired of this defeatist attitude. Oh well we might get put into a group with Guatemala. Screw that.

You know what, all the teams that made the Hex last time were able to be Guatemala and similar teams. Canada needs to be able to do the same.

To reiterate. Its not about looking for the easiest path to success for Canada. Its about development and growth of the game in Canada. The format has a lot to do with how you progress as a side from world cup cycle to the next. And, it has a lot to do with growing the fan base.

1) You are not going to grow the fan base by playing the minnows in tournament one year before anybody is even thinking about World cup soccer

2) Our up and coming players will not get the experience (to carry over to 2018) and the development as a player because they will play fewer games against quality sides.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Seriously....we're discussing "what if" we beat Guatemala. Non discussion. Beat them or we don't deserve it. For the love all things good I hope the CMNT pool players are not reading this. They are going to start wondering "what do they know about the Guats that we don't????". For crying out loud....yer either good enough or you are not.

We have NOT been good enough. No we have a chance again to show we are.

Link to post
Share on other sites
To reiterate. Its not about looking for the easiest path to success for Canada. Its about development and growth of the game in Canada. The format has a lot to do with how you progress as a side from world cup cycle to the next. And, it has a lot to do with growing the fan base.

1) You are not going to grow the fan base by playing the minnows in tournament one year before anybody is even thinking about World cup soccer

2) Our up and coming players will not get the experience (to carry over to 2018) and the development as a player because they will play fewer games against quality sides.

I don't disagree with the goals you've stated. However, there is no easy way to do it. Qualifying for a World Cup and doing respectably would help. The steps in place to grow grassroots soccer help. A large Voyageurs' and club supporters groups' presence at home matches help.

But FIFA and CONCACAF formats for World Cup Qualification have little bearing on it and frankly, I'd be worried if they cared about little ol' Canada when they think these things up. As a nation, we need to be accountable for how we do as a soccer playing nation. If that means we have to beat up on Anguilla to get to play Mexico or the US, then let's do it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

But FIFA and CONCACAF formats for World Cup Qualification have little bearing on it and frankly, I'd be worried if they cared about little ol' Canada when they think these things up.

Its not about only Canada. Its also about sides like Jamaica, El salvador, Guatemala, Panama, Haiti, Surinam and Honduras (what I call the middle class of the region). Look what happened in 2004, all of these sides got pitted in two groups whereas T&T got mex, St. Vincent, and St.Kitts. As a result of the easy path, T&T got to play 10 more valuable games in the hex. Think of what that means for player experience and how it hinders in the long term those sides that I mentioned by not playing those extra games. Most of those sides were better than T&T.

Edited by Free kick
Link to post
Share on other sites
Its not about only Canada. Its also about sides like Jamaica, El salvador, Guatemala, Panama, Haiti, Surinam and Honduras (what I call the middle class of the region). Look what happened in 2004, all of these sides got pitted in two groups whereas T&T got mex, St. Vincent, and St.Kitts. As a result of the easy path, T&T got to play 10 more valuable games in the hex. Think of what that means for player experience and how it hinders in the long term those sides that I mentioned by not playing those extra games. Most of those sides were better than T&T.

Exactly. whoever in the 7th to 12th spot will be drawn with Guatemala will be at risk of playing only 2 meaningfull game in the whole WCQ process, because TBH the quality of the 3rd and 4th teams in every group will be so weak that you can't consider it meaningful games (unless you are talking about giving them a good beating because of a potential tie for the #1 spot).

So, it's not about Canada but about the middle class teams like us who needs to play more quality games.

Of course, the format is set now so the players have to live with it but we can still discuss it.....

Link to post
Share on other sites

The new format sounds better to me. Obviously there's a risk that it would be worse if your team goes out after 6 games, but I have no doubt that CONCACAF will find a way to rig the draw to make sure that Guatemala, Canada, T&T, Costa Rica, Panama, and El Salvador aren't drawn in the same group. They want these countries in the final twelve. Worse case we'll get Haiti or Nicaragua.

To me, 6 prep matches for the semis -regardless of opposition- as much better than 2. The last few cycles we've had a real problem getting settled with so many players coming in from Europe. Now with more domestics available, we should have much better chemistry to start the semis. We shouldn't need to integrate as many Euro players as a result.

Link to post
Share on other sites
For those fearful of Guatemala, I would expect they should be cracking the top twelve by virtue of their Gold Cup qualification. If the second stage is seeded after Gold Cup, we should be looking even better as T&T may have fallen out of the top 12 -which would mean they would end up in a group with Grenada. :)

It's not that people are fearful of Guatemala but we don't like the prospect of Guatemala or T&T (or a similar team in term of strenght) being in the 13 to 18 position and potentially being drawn with Canada.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...