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WCQ - El Salvador vs. Canada, 17th Nov. 2015 GAME Thread


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I completely agree on the 8 points thing. I think the big boogie man Honduras of the past isn't the team we're seeing this year. Before this pair of games I thought it was a foregone conclusion Honduras would sweep El Salvador, now I'm not so sure. Also, El Salvador doesn't have the PTSD when it comes to Honduras like we do, they just see them as another central american team that's ranked 3-4 spots ahead of them.

Mexico did us a giant favor by breaking 20 years of results and winning in Honduras. Literally of all the ways things could've gone down this is basically the 2nd best way. 6 points, would've been fantastic...but 4 points with Honduras on 0...if you had told me that before these games I would've been ecstatic. It's funny how quickly expectations change.

 

First time poster, long time lurker here. Completely agree with you, if you would have told me before we'd have 4 points, I'd have taken that. Yes, the Honduras win was fantastic, but just because we narrowly beat them at home doesn't mean we suddenly turned into worldbeaters here. 

One game at a time, so far so good.

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Dejan J had a chance ( not taken) late in second half - ball fell to his feet and he seemed as surprised as anyone and didn't get a touch- that one seems forgotten too

4 points is acceptable

could have been 6 to be honest- but it could have been as easily just 2 -if we had drawn with Honduras

So, all in time to #FH and get some points from them too!

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"Dejan J had a chance ( not taken) late in second half - ball fell to his feet and he seemed as surprised as anyone and didn't get a touch- that one seems forgotten too"

That was pretty funny although I wasn't laughing at the time. Too bad he was asleep...it would have been a great goal if he just trapped it and poked it in the net. A defender's chance.

Edited by rightback
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8 points might do it or it might not. We won't know until it's over. So do we want to aim for a goal that might not be good enough? I sure don't. I also don't want to rely on Honduras fucking up because we all know what happened 3 years ago. They lost 0-2 at home to Panama and looked like crap in Toronto, yet a month later they destroy Cuba both legs including 0-4 in Havana - where we had barely scraped by.

Now don't get me wrong, i am an optimist and i think we're in the drivers seat, but i hate settling for mediocrity (ironically a fan of the MNT for 30 yrs off/on) when the chance is there to bury our opponents. MD3 will be huge, i'd like to see us beat Mexico and for ES to beat Honduras and put the Hondurans in a death grip.

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Realistically our strategy to beat Mexico is to be defensively structured and hope for a goal on a counter/set piece, which is pretty much what we do anyways.  

The goal for the next three matches is three clean sheets.  One is passable and there's like a 75% chance its enough.  Two is absolutely fantastic and 99% puts us through.

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This is so painful to watch. Playing against a bunch of amateurs and hardly any chances are being created. At Bayern Munich they have a 5 second rule which means that the ball has to be won back within 5 seconds after losing it. It takes Canada 2 minutes to win a ball back. Sitting so deep and no passion to win.

This is a must win game. 

 

 

The main objective in these qualifying matches is to get at least a point and to not give up any goals. Mission accomplished.

All the El Salvador players looked good, to me. Quick, skilful, always in position, and good on the break. I expect that there are many more that could play just as well. I wouldn't sell them short because they lost in Mexico or because they are earning big salaries.

I'm not discouraged. It's all to play for.

 

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The main objective in these qualifying matches is to get at least a point and to not give up any goals. Mission accomplished.

All the El Salvador players looked good, to me. Quick, skilful, always in position, and good on the break. I expect that there are many more that could play just as well. I wouldn't sell them short because they lost in Mexico or because they are earning big salaries.

I'm not discouraged. It's all to play for.

 

I think this is important to note. I was only able to watch the first half (on and off) and I too noticed a confident and talented Salvadorian team. Certainly they won't let Honduras walk over them, regardless of who suits up.

 

Aside from the experience level and the lack of physicality, there is really not much to choose between them and Honduras, actually.

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I have to say, during the match I thought we were the better side, but as the match wore on we started looking really gassed, so coming away with the point was huge. Steve Sandor made a good point (as he often does) that, despite being almost a totally new squad for SLV, these are younger, up and coming players who have a ton to prove and were therefore quite motivated to win. We held our own and were full marks for this result.

 

Also, Larin is due for one - the athleticism required for that header near the end of the first half was ridiculous.

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Someone should suggest to the El Salvador groundskeeper that next time, he should prep the field with lawnmowers and grass rollers, as opposed to the pickaxes and land mines he used for this one.

The dreadful pitch aside, however, I was pretty disappointed with this match.  We're all right at the back, but woeful going forward.  So many times our midfield had the chance to pass the ball but didn't, and ended up running into a blind alley and being tackled by three or four blue shirts.  This was a big opportunity missed.

Some random thoughts ...

Ricketts has the first touch of Nicklas Bendtner, the ball control of a parking meter, and the football brain of Piers Morgan.  Larin had just two chances, missed them both, and looked utterly lost the rest of the match.  Hoilett was fantastic for sixty minutes, knackered after that.  Hutchinson was off his best, but still saved our bacon a couple of times.  Borjan had only one job to do, and did it very well.  The back four as a whole looked very good, that one "oops" aside.  Piette played 20 minutes, which is 20 minutes longer than he should have, he's even worse than Ricketts.  In general, we played down to the level of El Salvador; this game was there for the taking, and we simply didn't take it.  Our tactics were cowardly and our substitutions were ineffective.  The whole team should have realized after the first minute that when you're playing on a cow pasture, slow passing in close quarters is not going to win you anything.

Talent-wise, we've got half of a good team here (keeper, backline, Hutchinson), and half that is still a work in progress.  Tactics-wise and approach-wise, we're greener than Kermit the Frog.

Oh, well.  It is what it is.  Now we have to beat El Salvador at home, pick up at least a point from the other three remaining games, and hope other results go our way.  Ouch.

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To be fair, those guys seemed fairly pro-Canada throughout. I think they maybe just knew their audience.

The bein guys are generally straight shooters. They know they're talking to a sophisticated football audience and don't need to dumb it down for the unwashed masses that TSN/Sportsnet often do and don't need to be cheerleaders parroting sanctioned talking points like we see for NFL telecasts.

In their wrap up show, the panel was split on Canada like the Voyageurs. The young Irish bloke thought 4 points was incredible for Canada while Juan Pablo Angel thought ES was there for the taking. And the Canadian host Jeremy St Louis agreed with Angel.

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First off, belated thanks to the Voyageurs for creating such an incredible atmosphere for the game on Friday.  It was only my fourth time seeing the men's team play, but it was by far the best...

As for how things stand now, I am having a hard time maintaining my optimism with a lot of people already saying this World Cup campaign is lost, two games in... Re. the complaints about Canada's playing style, I heard comments on radio today relating to the Maple Leafs that made me think of the national team.  The thought was that Mike Babcock, working with a "talent-deficient" roster needed to establish a structure that would allow the Leafs to be successful.  Some of their wins would not be pretty, but they would be wins regardless.  Sound familiar?  Even with its new additions, Canada's roster is not rich in talent.  But at least now, they play within a structure that gives them a chance to win.  In the past, there's been a lot of hoofing the ball down field and simply hoping for the best...

As far as winning in Central America, how does Canada approach a team like El Salvador away from home?  I didn't see 3000 fans there supporting our team... The only player who's ever experienced a Central American win is deGuzman.  How does Canada go into a game against El Salvador, even as depleted as it supposedly was, with the confidence to take the game from them?  Knowing that a defensive lapse might cost them a goal and possibly the game?  There is a long road ahead, and to me, there's no point speculating how many points Honduras and El Salvador might take from each other.  Canada must control its own destiny, but who knows at this point, what our team will look like in March, or September? It's way too early to speculate when so much can happen in between.  I'd like to spend the winter remaining hopeful that Canada will come through this time, just because they still can...

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If Floro when in and pushed hard for a win and we lost 1-0, people here would be pulling out their pitchforks and torches.

Canada has 4 points from 2 games, sits in 2nd in the group, and Honduras (the alleged 2nd best of the group) has zero points.

I am encouraged by what i saw from El Salvador, as they look good enough to knick at least one point and maybe 2 or three, from their two Honduran games and keep them beneath us.

We close out the round with a home game against El Salvador.  It will likely be a "win and you are in" scenario.  What more can you ask for on home turf?  This is a much better situation than having our final match down in Central America needing a win to advance.

I think this is a very good way how things have unfolded so far.  I know it is great to qualify easily, or guarantee our 2nd place before the final match; however this is playing out well so far. Mexico has co operated nicely so far too, especially helping with the goal differential which may come in handy.

Edited by amanfromvancouver
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Someone should suggest to the El Salvador groundskeeper that next time, he should prep the field with lawnmowers and grass rollers, as opposed to the pickaxes and land mines he used for this one.

The dreadful pitch aside, however, I was pretty disappointed with this match.  We're all right at the back, but woeful going forward.  So many times our midfield had the chance to pass the ball but didn't, and ended up running into a blind alley and being tackled by three or four blue shirts.  This was a big opportunity missed.

Some random thoughts ...

Ricketts has the first touch of Nicklas Bendtner, the ball control of a parking meter, and the football brain of Piers Morgan.  Larin had just two chances, missed them both, and looked utterly lost the rest of the match.  Hoilett was fantastic for sixty minutes, knackered after that.  Hutchinson was off his best, but still saved our bacon a couple of times.  Borjan had only one job to do, and did it very well.  The back four as a whole looked very good, that one "oops" aside.  Piette played 20 minutes, which is 20 minutes longer than he should have, he's even worse than Ricketts.  In general, we played down to the level of El Salvador; this game was there for the taking, and we simply didn't take it.  Our tactics were cowardly and our substitutions were ineffective.  The whole team should have realized after the first minute that when you're playing on a cow pasture, slow passing in close quarters is not going to win you anything.

Talent-wise, we've got half of a good team here (keeper, backline, Hutchinson), and half that is still a work in progress.  Tactics-wise and approach-wise, we're greener than Kermit the Frog.

Oh, well.  It is what it is.  Now we have to beat El Salvador at home, pick up at least a point from the other three remaining games, and hope other results go our way.  Ouch.

Except for that late foul against Honduras, I thought Piette did well both times he came in.

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Except for that late foul against Honduras, I thought Piette did well both times he came in.

Totally agree! I often find Piette very inconsistent, but he looked strong last night.  

As for Larin, he is not the finished product yet. Keep in mind that he gets much better service at Orlando. He is stronger with his face to goal, not his back. He played most of the last two games with back to goal. He WILL need to add that sort of hold up play to his repertoire, mind you.

 

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Except for that late foul against Honduras, I thought Piette did well both times he came in.

I agree, he also made a couple of real nice passes that started good attacking plays which isn't really his niche, I think Umpiredice was way too harsh with his observation!

Edited by gator
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Aside from De Jong being a complete wild card at times we play a tight game at the back.  I'm confident we can get 2-4 points off our 3 matches left against Mexico and Honduras.  Of course El Salvador at home remains a must win.

Feels like Floro has reeled de Jong in a bit doesn't it?  Shortened the leash after a period of free reign.  Probably the right choice yesterday but I'll be disappointed if it becomes the new norm.  Warts and all de Jong as a wingback does assist our attack on a number of levels and we need that.

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Feels like Floro has reeled de Jong in a bit doesn't it?  Shortened the leash after a period of free reign.  Probably the right choice yesterday but I'll be disappointed if it becomes the new norm.  Warts and all de Jong as a wingback does assist our attack on a number of levels and we need that.

Most of the time we have our best attacking set up threat (Hoillet) on his side, so if he is going to do more attacking support alongside him, than Floro needs to have a holding mid minding the store while he's on walkabout.  I wonder if that's why he did a lot of stuff with Straith or sometimes Edgar in that holding mid spot.

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When is the last time that Honduras even scored goals in three consecutive games? I think people should calm down.

I think a lot of us are suffering PTSD from the 8-1 schalacking and that H will come back to haunt us.

They're still a team that has qualified for recent world cups so them getting 6pts vs ES next round is not impossible.  

Edited by Moldy9
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Yes we wasted 2 extra points. Yes Ricketts should not start.Yes Larin is not ready to be our saviour. BUT I saw the Mex-Hon. game and I think a win @ home vs Mex. is very possibleThey probably will play the counter game like they did yesterday and if we could put away a couple of chances early(Cavallini), our defensive play should hold out.Ater that all we need is a win vs ES @ home. Away game in Hon. we can cap tie 14 players.

I got the 2 last game in reverse order it seems. Hopefully by our last game vs ES we are already qualified.

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The beIN sports commentators didn't hold back their punches with their criticisms of the Canadian team ( mostly Ricketts) and the refereeing, Geiger, saying he made lots of bad calls and didn't dish out yellows when merited.

I don't know what the Bein guys expected from Geiger. Im the first one to always bitch and complain about refs. But I thought Geiger called a really good game.

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The beIN sports commentators didn't hold back their punches with their criticisms of the Canadian team ( mostly Ricketts) and the refereeing, Geiger, saying he made lots of bad calls and didn't dish out yellows when merited. 

I would agree, but really, based on past history with Latino refs (especially Archundia) it could have been worse.  While he could have dished out more yellows,  I'm glad no phantom calls were made in the box that normally goes against us.

Playing in that f-upped pitch was a disgrace. It's almost like when Canada played in Estonia under poor playing conditions:  getting a point is not a bad result.

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Playing in that f-upped pitch was a disgrace. It's almost like when Canada played in Estonia under poor playing conditions:  getting a point is not a bad result.

True, but we're using artificial turf and cold weather to try to gain the same type of home field advantage, aren't we?  I have no doubt that El Salvador maimed their pitch on purpose, just to make it as difficult for us as possible.

Edited by umpiredice
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