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4 minutes ago, LeoH037 said:

It's nothing but ludicrous to compare the choice of having to merely support a team during a 90 minute game with that of being an actual player and having to make a life and career impacting decision as your career as a pro is just starting. In the end it THEIR life, not yours, and THEY will have to live with whatever repercussions that come with the decision they make. If he decides to represent the USA (his reasons being his own), it doesn't stop making him any less Canadian. That's not YOUR or anyone else's call to make.

You had me right up until the bolded part.   If you choose to rep another country, it sure as hell does have an impact on how Canadian you are - at least in my eyes (and that of many others).  Like you said, you make your choices and you live with the consequences.   Sometimes those consequences involved turning your back on your country for personal gain.  Is it understandable?   Sure.  But that doesn’t negate the fact that you didn’t answer the call for this country.  

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Who's on their high horse??  If you choose to help anther nation, bring glory to their program, win trophies for them etc I think that does say something about how much or what kind of CDN you are.  I

He probably also get nailed to the bench once Altidore returns too. I can't wait until TFC loses its American influence. I've had season tickets since season 1 and I'm tired of being Team America

If he doesn't play for us, I sort of hope he does.

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Believe it or not, it may be easier for Ayo to get playing time in the US system at CF.  Altidore and Zardes have maybe one more cycle in them, and there are already calls for them to be phased out. Guys like Bobby Wood have already been phased out. Really Sargent is their main up and comer at striker, and he is not really that good. 

The existence of Jonathan David alone significantly jeopardizes Akinola's possible playing time for Canada over the next 10 years. Cavalini and Larin have a cycle or 2 left in them. Liam Millar is ahead of Akinola for now and you have Bair, Campbell and Ongaro coming up. 

 

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2 hours ago, BrennanFan said:

Believe it or not, it may be easier for Ayo to get playing time in the US system at CF.  Altidore and Zardes have maybe one more cycle in them, and there are already calls for them to be phased out. Guys like Bobby Wood have already been phased out. Really Sargent is their main up and comer at striker, and he is not really that good. 

The existence of Jonathan David alone significantly jeopardizes Akinola's possible playing time for Canada over the next 10 years. Cavalini and Larin have a cycle or 2 left in them. Liam Millar is ahead of Akinola for now and you have Bair, Campbell and Ongaro coming up. 

 

There will always be competition in a good national team setup.

David has a different game and to be honest David and Akinola have complementary games. It seems Akinola thrives with a good AM and that’s really David’s position, or as a 2nd striker.

In a 3-5-2 or 4-2-3-1 they would fit each other like a glove 

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8 hours ago, MtlMario said:

My personal view is if I grew up and lived in Canada my whole life I would not have to CHOOSE which country to represent . I am not a fan of having to CONVINCE people to wear the Maple Leaf, you are either Canadian or not ( you can't be a little pregnant). If he doesn't CHOOSE us then I hope he doesn't stay in Concacaf and CHOOSES Nigeria. Thank u thank u very much.

I was born in Scarborough but we moved when I was 1. It rarely crosses my mind that I was born there and I don’t remember anything obviously, I only have pics/videos of my old home to see what it was like. When I see Scarborough get mentioned I never think “hell yeah scarborough!”

With Ayo growing up here I’m sure he feels more Canadian, I think playing with the US had probably been more of a career choice so far. What’s the point of switching right now when you’re getting to play in all these international games? Now that he’s likely past youth level games, we just have to hope he represents the country he grew up, developed, and still plays in ;)

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7 hours ago, dyslexic nam said:

You had me right up until the bolded part.   If you choose to rep another country, it sure as hell does have an impact on how Canadian you are - at least in my eyes (and that of many others).  Like you said, you make your choices and you live with the consequences.   Sometimes those consequences involved turning your back on your country for personal gain.  Is it understandable?   Sure.  But that doesn’t negate the fact that you didn’t answer the call for this country.  

You are not a professional player and will never have to make such a choice. So get off your high self righteous horse. You don't get to decide who is and who isn't Canadian, or get to quantify it. Your entertainment, and everyone else's here, is not on a player's list of priorities. This is a game of men kicking a ball around, you don't "turn your back on your country" because you decide to kick a ball around for someone else. You can hold as big as grudge as you want for life, but that's it. Seriously. Ridiculous.

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5 hours ago, BrennanFan said:

Believe it or not, it may be easier for Ayo to get playing time in the US system at CF.  Altidore and Zardes have maybe one more cycle in them, and there are already calls for them to be phased out. Guys like Bobby Wood have already been phased out. Really Sargent is their main up and comer at striker, and he is not really that good. 

The existence of Jonathan David alone significantly jeopardizes Akinola's possible playing time for Canada over the next 10 years. Cavalini and Larin have a cycle or 2 left in them. Liam Millar is ahead of Akinola for now and you have Bair, Campbell and Ongaro coming up. 

 

David has shown to be more than capable of playing in a 2 man front line, he's been quite successful at it at club level. Him and Akinola are different enough types of forward to be able to complement each other quite nicely. If Akinola has a good season with TFC he jumps ahead of all those guys, including Millar, whom -regardless of how talented he is - unfortunately has yet to sort out a club situation that sees him consistently playing. If Akinola keeps growing, and even ends up transferring to Europe (and chooses Canada), who's to say he can't push a 31 year old Cavallini in MLS, and a 29 year old Larin (wherever he may be) in the next 3-4 years?

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1 hour ago, LeoH037 said:

You are not a professional player and will never have to make such a choice. So get off your high self righteous horse. You don't get to decide who is and who isn't Canadian, or get to quantify it. Your entertainment, and everyone else's here, is not on a player's list of priorities. This is a game of men kicking a ball around, you don't "turn your back on your country" because you decide to kick a ball around for someone else. You can hold as big as grudge as you want for life, but that's it. Seriously. Ridiculous.

Who's on their high horse??  If you choose to help anther nation, bring glory to their program, win trophies for them etc I think that does say something about how much or what kind of CDN you are.  Is he entitled to do it?? Sure, it could mean a better life for him, more money opportunity etc sure, and everyone can do it if they want.  But dont pretend it makes him the same as a guy who reps canada, chooses to try and make the canadian team better, tries to win for canada, supports our program and by doing so gives back to the game in his country.   

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I think (could be wrong) that Leo is talking about the political discussion that has gone on about “a Canadian is a Canadian is a Canadian” or whatever that quote was. Whether from birth or as an immigrant, if you have citizenship you should be considered equal in the eyes of the law/government.

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9 hours ago, LeoH037 said:

You are not a professional player and will never have to make such a choice. So get off your high self righteous horse. You don't get to decide who is and who isn't Canadian, or get to quantify it. Your entertainment, and everyone else's here, is not on a player's list of priorities. This is a game of men kicking a ball around, you don't "turn your back on your country" because you decide to kick a ball around for someone else. You can hold as big as grudge as you want for life, but that's it. Seriously. Ridiculous.

Agree to disagree I guess (and it appears you are disagreeing with lots of folks on here) because in my mind this is precisely what a player is doing if they choose to rep another country that they have pretty minimal ties to.  It is different if their country doesn’t want them - and we have both gained players and lost players in these circumstances (Arfield and Teffler are examples of both).  I view that situation very differently.   But if your country - the one you grew up in and the one you developed your soccer skills in - calls you to play for the national team, you absolutely are turning your back on them if you make a calculated decision to play for someone else. Call it ridiculous and judge me all you want, but I still believe in national pride and loyalty to one’s country. And yes, that is true even in something as mundane as kicking a little ball around a field.  

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17 hours ago, LeoH037 said:

 That's not YOUR or anyone else's call to make.

Maybe you didn't read my first sentence.As far as I'm concerned he could could choose whatever country he wants, like I said If I have to convince you I don't want you. If he does CHOOSE the USA and he scores a goal that eliminates us from some World Cup qualification, come back and let me know how you feel.

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36 minutes ago, MtlMario said:

Maybe you didn't read my first sentence.As far as I'm concerned he could could choose whatever country he wants, like I said If I have to convince you I don't want you. If he does CHOOSE the USA and he scores a goal that eliminates us from some World Cup qualification, come back and let me know how you feel.

I am starting to get the feeling he would be pretty okay with that...

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18 hours ago, BrennanFan said:

Believe it or not, it may be easier for Ayo to get playing time in the US system at CF.  Altidore and Zardes have maybe one more cycle in them, and there are already calls for them to be phased out. Guys like Bobby Wood have already been phased out. Really Sargent is their main up and comer at striker, and he is not really that good. 

The existence of Jonathan David alone significantly jeopardizes Akinola's possible playing time for Canada over the next 10 years. Cavalini and Larin have a cycle or 2 left in them. Liam Millar is ahead of Akinola for now and you have Bair, Campbell and Ongaro coming up

 

I was with you until the last sentence.  Professionally,  I have seen or read nothing yet from miller that matches what Akinola has managed in just the last two games.  As for the last three,  well they are still just prospects.  There will always be prospects.  And,  prospects will always be in the eye of the beholder.

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2 minutes ago, Free kick said:

I was with you until the last sentence.  

I obviously want Akinola to play for us but have we really got more than a small sample size of what he can do? He has scored goals, mostly put on a platter by a world class player in essentially an exhibition tournament, are you saying any of those players @BrennanFan mentions aren't capable of that?

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16 hours ago, BrennanFan said:

Believe it or not, it may be easier for Ayo to get playing time in the US system at CF.  Altidore and Zardes have maybe one more cycle in them, and there are already calls for them to be phased out. Guys like Bobby Wood have already been phased out. Really Sargent is their main up and comer at striker, and he is not really that good. 

I think the US have a a few more up and comers in Akinola's age group.  Sebastien Soto had a pretty good U20 World Cup and Ulysses Llanez is a year younger and already has his first cap.

I think that this performance so far could get him a look with the USMNT in the near future, but I think him getting more than 10 caps with them could still be a long shot.

(Can't wait for this post to be revisited in 2022 with a "Well, this aged poorly.")

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3 hours ago, dyslexic nam said:

Agree to disagree I guess (and it appears you are disagreeing with lots of folks on here) because in my mind this is precisely what a player is doing if they choose to rep another country that they have pretty minimal ties to.  It is different if their country doesn’t want them - and we have both gained players and lost players in these circumstances (Arfield and Teffler are examples of both).  I view that situation very differently.   But if your country - the one you grew up in and the one you developed your soccer skills in - calls you to play for the national team, you absolutely are turning your back on them if you make a calculated decision to play for someone else. Call it ridiculous and judge me all you want, but I still believe in national pride and loyalty to one’s country. And yes, that is true even in something as mundane as kicking a little ball around a field.  

It’s easy for us to say that but everyone’s situation is different. Look at hockey for example, you see Canadians in the NHL have kids in the States and raise them there but the kids often feel Canadian because that’s how they’re raised. I’ve only ever lived in Canada and my family has been Canadian for generations so it’s hard for me to put myself in their shoes or blame them for how they feel about their nationality, particularly if they’re born in another country. If they just have ties to another country through their grandparents or something then I could maybe agree with the criticisms a little bit more.

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My parents came here from Holland, my Dad 6 and my Mom 2.  I'm not particularly Dutch, don't speak the language although grew up around a ton of people of Dutch background in Niagara Region.  Always cheered for Canada first Dutch second.  But if I had been a thousand times better than I was, in the nineties in my early 20s had both countries called, man that would have been a tough decision.  A team almost guaranteed (until recently) to be in WC with greats like Neeskens, Cruyff, Van Basten, Bergkamp. 

If I were in the same situation now, with Davies and David and a (maybe) guaranteed 2026 WC spot with more chance of PT with CMNT I'd like to think I'd choose Canada hands down.  But if Akinola has significant Nigerian cultural ties,  or had really good experiences at USMMT camps, this won't be easy for him either.

It's why I hate Hargreaves's decision but don't bear the dude himself any ill will.  If he were in the area signing autographs I'd be there in a second (this might get me banned on this site).  Because he made a tough decision but was a major player for a great soccer nation, and regardless did a lot to improve the reputation of Canadian soccer in Germany and England.  Jonathan DeGuzman's decision I understand completely although I wish he hadn't strung us along.

Nationalism has both positive and negative connotations (see 1st and 2nd WW) and nowadays many of us have 2, 3, 4 countries to which we feel significant ties.  Playing for another soccer team does not mean you don't love your country, it can simply mean you love multiple countries.  I fail to see a problem with that.  

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On 7/18/2020 at 1:38 PM, Kent said:

The “you are either Canadian or not” line of thinking isn’t very convincing. You can be Canadian and have another nationality. People often liken the international representation decision to monogamous romantic relationships. But maybe love for a country is more like love for your children. People wouldn’t say “which one of your kids do you love? There can only be one!”

I am hoping he eventually chooses Canada, but I am assuming the chances are small at this point.

I have come around to this line of thinking over time.   I use to be as angry as the next guy everytime we would hear that someone decided to represent another country.  And we have had a humongous number of these occurance, to the point that there might a have been a few WC finals in store had we had everyone who could have represnt canada. 

But i have evolved.  International soccer is (like or not) an extension of your personal professional career or your legacy.  You have your club(s), which pays your salary and allows to to live, and then you have the team you represent internationally, which doesnt pay you anything or hardly anything.   But if there wasnt any economic or professional benefit in the caps you earn or the successes that you and your country achieves internationally,  how many players around the globe would bother playing internationally?  Your caps and your international involvement and successes is part of your work resume.   Its not like doing a public service nor is it akin to something like military service when you don the red shirt on the soccer pitch.  
 

Yes,  its a chicken and the egg thing.  And i still maintain and agree with this point. You need to be successfull (eg.: qualify for WC’s) to attract players with multiple passports but you cant be succcessfull unless you convince all those players with multiple passports to play for you.   But its not up to the professional athlete/player to solve that for us.  This can only change with someone like Davies and David, by showing to everyone we have the talent to accomplish something worthwhile.  
 

A paradigm of what i mentioned above is the case Barrett in basketball.  He took a pass at playing for canada at the world cup last year.  Yet, he lead and single-handedly carried canada to a gold at the U19 world championships.   He gives to local charities in Mississauga,  his father made his name playing basketball for canada and is the team general manager for the CND NT.  Yet he (presumably with his fathers approval) took a pass on playing for Canada at the WC.   Why, because it was the best decision professionally.

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Revisiting the case of  Hargreaves:

This might be the one or two cases where i still think some of the bitterness might be still warranted.  Here is why:  

1) He shopped his services too overtly:   Recall that initially, it was alleged and communicated through second a third channels that the choice was between Wales and Canada.   Then, the world witnessed his play at the champions league final, the English FA only then noticed he even existed and came calling.    So there were three sides and chose the one where there was the least attachment to and showed the least amount of effort to court but would give him the greatest amount of visibility.  Had he chose Wales, i might have fully understood.  The honnest thing to do would have been:  just say you are focused on you career and that the choice will be much later and it will be a personal decision based on consultation with family, agent, other representatives, coaches etc etc.   That way no one gets the senses that they are being strung along.  
 

2). He and his group let it out that the reasons for his decsion was that utterly bogus excuse that he was cut from some CND NT youth team.  Anyone should know how national NT youth teams are selected and the dynamics that go into those decisions.  And how it is not reflection of what a player can achieve or will achieve.     This one goes to the question of integrity and honnesty.  
 

3). He introduced himself to the english media with the words about “how he feels english”.   Again, total BS given what i had mentioned in the first two points above and in my post earlier.  Again this goes to the question of integritty.  Just say its a professional decision.
 

He would have been viewed  very differently IMO,  without the three points above.  In others words:  1) dont hint at anything until you make you final decsion,   2) Dont make up bogus excuses but rather convey that the decsions is entirely based one professional circumstances.   3). Yes its ultmately about opportunity but you have to leave a small part for sentiment.  Even if it is a small part.  Choosing Wales would have addressed this.  But dont hypocritically suggest that it was all or mostly about sentiment.

Edited by Free kick
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2 hours ago, Free kick said:

mentioned above is the case Barrett in basketball.  He took a pass at playing for canada at the world cup last year.  Yet, he lead and single-handedly carried canada to a gold at the U19 world championships.   He gives to local charities in Mississauga,  his father made his name playing basketball for canada and is the team general manager for the CND NT.  Yet he (presumably with his fathers approval) took a pass on playing for Canada at the WC.   Why, because it was the best decision professionally.

He took a pass, a tournie off etc....he didnt help another country win.  BIG DIFFERENCE. 

 

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18 minutes ago, Bison44 said:

He took a pass, a tournie off etc....he didnt help another country win.  BIG DIFFERENCE. 

 

And he was committed to play at the Olympic qualifying tournament for Canada. The majority of Canadian NBA players did not participate in the World Cup but will be participating in the Olympic qualifying tournament.

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I think Nigeria would be a distant third choice for Akinola right now, so I don't really worry too much about it. Two words: World Cup. Canada and the U.S. are hosting 2026, so he's guaranteed to be in one when he's entering his prime. Even with expansion to 48 teams, Nigeria getting there isn't a certainty. If 2026 was somewhere else, I would have been more iffy on this.

If he does choose the U.S., I would be disappointed but I wouldn't be angry. He was born there, grew up here but played for their youth setup, and now plays and lives in Canada for a team in an American league. Even allowing for other factors, that would make his choice harder.  It's a little different from others, who forgot where they grew up as soon as they went overseas.

 

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3 hours ago, Free kick said:

Revisiting the case of  **********:

This might be the one or two cases where i still think some of the bitterness might be still warranted.  Here is why:  

1) He shopped his services too overtly:   Recall that initially, it was alleged and communicated through second a third channels that the choice was between Wales and Canada.   Then, the world witnessed his play at the champions league final, the English FA only then noticed he even existed and came calling.    So there were three sides and chose the one where there was the least attachment to and showed the least amount of effort to court but would give him the greatest amount of visibility.  Had he chose Wales, i might have fully understood.  The honnest thing to do would have been:  just say you are focused on you career and that the choice will be much later and it will be a personal decision based on consultation with family, agent, other representatives, coaches etc etc.   That way no one gets the senses that they are being strung along.  
 

2). He and his group let it out that the reasons for his decsion was that utterly bogus excuse that he was cut from some CND NT youth team.  Anyone should know how national NT youth teams are selected and the dynamics that go into those decisions.  And how it is not reflection of what a player can achieve or will achieve.     This one goes to the question of integrity and honnesty.  
 

3). He introduced himself to the english media with the words about “how he feels english”.   Again, total BS given what i had mentioned in the first two points above and in my post earlier.  Again this goes to the question of integritty.  Just say its a professional decision.
 

He would have been viewed  very differently IMO,  without the three points above.  In others words:  1) dont hint at anything until you make you final decsion,   2) Dont make up bogus excuses but rather convey that the decsions is entirely based one professional circumstances.   3). Yes its ultmately about opportunity but you have to leave a small part for sentiment.  Even if it is a small part.  Choosing Wales would have addressed this.  But dont hypocritically suggest that it was all or mostly about sentiment.

I was pretty young when all this happens so I don’t have the strong feelings that many of you have about this. Seems to me though that he really didn’t have a choice but to say he felt English. How would he win over English fans if he said he doesn’t care about England, it’s just a professional decision. That’s not a realistic thing to expect someone to do IMO.

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