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Under 23 qualifying roster speculation

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12 hours ago, SoccMan said:

You will be surprised the exposure a men’s Canadian team would get if they made the Olympics. We all think the World Cup is it, but in Canada the Olympics are a big deal too and if a Men’s Canadian team made the Olympics it would make the Gold Cup tournament look like a house league tournament in terms of the attention a Canadian men’s soccer team playing in the Olympic soccer tournament would get in the mainstream media in Canada. Yes of course Canada’s men’s team making it to the World Cup would be huge in terms of media exposure and everything else, but don’t kid yourself people a Canadian men’s soccer team making the Olympic soccer tournament would be a close second to a Canadian men’s soccer team making the World Cup, that’s why I get so frustrated at the opportunities missed in all the past Olympic soccer qualifying tournaments where the preparation has always been a half assed approached!

I think this is true moreso for people outside of the soccer bubble.

But for bringing attention to the sport at large and Canada's place in it, the Olympics would be absolutely massive. It was the Olympics that launched the women's profile in this country.

Qualifying and doing well would finally crush the most ignorant and frustrating question out there: Canada has a men's soccer team?

That said, it would not move the needle much for those already in the soccer bubble. I am talking about your typical soccer fan who exclusively watches the EPL and Champions League. The type of fan who supports their parents or grandparents country for World Cup, or Euros, or Copa America, but scoffs at the Gold Cup and refuses to pay attention to Canada until we make a splash and prove we aren't terrible.

For those types, the Olympics will not matter one bit. That's one reason I don't get too bent out of shape for qualifying.

Obviously I want to qualify, but not if it compromises the senior team on their path to the world cup.

Edited by Obinna

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Olympics only matter if Canada does well. No one really paid attention to the women's team in the Olympics till London. Same applies to other team sports ex hockey and curling.

The group matches will make top 5 trending on twitter for a few hours but otherwise, it will get lost amongst all other events especially if a Canadian wins a medal that day.

Canada made the quarters in the 84 Olympics and lost to Brasil in penalties. Things were different but it didn't register at all.

And as Obinna mentioned, Olympics don't matter much to the core football supporters who don't pay attention to the Canadian national team.

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Can

On 8/2/2019 at 2:12 PM, red card said:

Olympics only matter if Canada does well. No one really paid attention to the women's team in the Olympics till London. Same applies to other team sports ex hockey and curling.

The group matches will make top 5 trending on twitter for a few hours but otherwise, it will get lost amongst all other events especially if a Canadian wins a medal that day.

Canada made the quarters in the 84 Olympics and lost to Brasil in penalties. Things were different but it didn't register at all.

And as Obinna mentioned, Olympics don't matter much to the core football supporters who don't pay attention to the Canadian national team.

Canada made the 1986 World Cup and you can say the same it didn’t register at all either , I was in my early 20’s and it didn’t do much for Canadian soccer either in terms of soccers’s mainstream popularity.  However, I’ll tell you the success Canada had at 1984 mens’s olympics definitely played a part in Canada qualifying for the 1986 World Cup with a lot of the same players. Moreover, times have changed soccer is much more popular now, so making an Olympics would be a big deal I’m a hard core soccer supporter I would care big time. But it’s not the few diseased individuals myself included that spent way too much time thinking about Canadian soccer that it would be good for but the casuals and even non soccer fans that might be swayed into giving Canadian soccer more of a look via CPL and MLS and the men’s national team. Qualifying for the men’s Olympic tournament would be a big deal my friend don’t kid yourself , second to the qualifying for the World Cup , this would be a big deal here in Canada no matter if other countries might not think of it as being big, it’s not about soccer in other countries it’s about helping the game grow in popularity here in Canada.

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2 hours ago, SoccMan said:

Can

Canada made the 1986 World Cup and you can say the same it didn’t register at all either , I was in my early 20’s and it didn’t do much for Canadian soccer either in terms of soccers’s mainstream popularity.  However, I’ll tell you the success Canada had at 1984 mens’s olympics definitely played a part in Canada qualifying for the 1986 World Cup with a lot of the same players. Moreover, times have changed soccer is much more popular now, so making an Olympics would be a big deal I’m a hard core soccer supporter I would care big time. But it’s not the few diseased individuals myself included that spent way too much time thinking about Canadian soccer that it would be good for but the casuals and even non soccer fans that might be swayed into giving Canadian soccer more of a look via CPL and MLS and the men’s national team. Qualifying for the men’s Olympic tournament would be a big deal my friend don’t kid yourself , second to the qualifying for the World Cup , this would be a big deal here in Canada no matter if other countries might not think of it as being big, it’s not about soccer in other countries it’s about helping the game grow in popularity here in Canada.

Sounds like it would be a big deal for you personally and you are thus assuming it would be for others, but you are not making any distinction between those casual soccer fans who care about the Olympics and those who don't - and many casual soccer fans don't care about it. 

Read over my post. What do you think? To me it seems like you are overstating the potential the Olympics would have for the Canadian program. Yes, the casual sports fan would be captivated, but not the casual soccer fan, the non-canadian supporter who watches Manchester United every week, but couldn't care less about Canada soccer. This is at least my opinion based on my experience with many such people who do not care about Olympic soccer in the slightest.

It's a very interesting subject and if you are willing to lay out your argument, I would be happy to read it. You clearly seem very steadfast in your belief it would be huge for Canadian soccer, so surely you have a good argument to share that backs up your belief.

Edited by Obinna

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Obinna: When do you think the womens team really punctured the mainstream??  Was it not the Olympics??  You said it yourself, so why wouldnt the same be true if the men could put together a run?  If we start taking these things seriously then maybe the public will as well. Instead of the tired old, canada cant even beat 3rd world countries, we always lose mantra from general public.  If we sent our best and by some miracle everyone got to see Davies, David, Tabla, Millar, Shafflebour, Borges et al getting a bronze medal, i think it would move the needle.  Those kids are going to be the backbone of the mens program for the next 10 years. They'll be at the WC in 2026....why not give the olympics a hard push??  Change the culture as the mouth pieces like to say.   

Edited by Bison44

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3 hours ago, Bison44 said:

Obinna: When do you think the womens team really punctured the mainstream??  Was it not the Olympics??  You said it yourself, so why wouldnt the same be true if the men could put together a run?  If we start taking these things seriously then maybe the public will as well. Instead of the tired old, canada cant even beat 3rd world countries, we always lose mantra from general public.  If we sent our best and by some miracle everyone got to see Davies, David, Tabla, Millar, Shafflebour, Borges et al getting a bronze medal, i think it would move the needle.  Those kids are going to be the backbone of the mens program for the next 10 years. They'll be at the WC in 2026....why not give the olympics a hard push??  Change the culture as the mouth pieces like to say.   

It wouldn’t be the same because the men’s Olympics is U23 with 3 overage players. This essentially makes it a youth tournament with a bit of extra spice if a Neymar is involved. This is not the case in the woman’s game, where the Olympics rivals the World Cup for importance. So no, I don’t think we would puncture the mainstream with a medal like the women did.

That’s not to say we wouldn’t benefit or that we shouldn’t push for it. We should want to qualify for everything. I am just not convinced it would be ground breaking to the type of soccer fan I described. It certainly wouldn’t be as big as it was for the woman.

For the average soccer fan, winning a medal in the Olympics would be similar to winning a medal at the U20 World Cup. 

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A positive showing in any global competition would be earth shattering for men’s soccer in this country. I think our biggest problem is the perception that we’re shite

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Everything related to the WC dominates Canada's men scene - from making the HEX or continental playoffs to playing in the group stage, scoring a goal, getting a win and advancing to the knockout stage. I'll take these before Olympic qualification.

Can't compare Olympics for women since it is best vs best and maybe only a few notches below the WC - though gap is widening as the recent WC has shown.

Canada women also benefitted from one of the best matches in women's history. Canada's women's rugby 7s won a medal but it hasn't registered much beyond the Canadian rugby arena. 

Other than certain fan bases like the Americans and the host country, no one else in the world gets overly excited qualifying about the Olympics. 

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You absolutely can compare it.  Our women’s team only got national love once they reached a semis of Olympics.

In Canadian culture it’s ingrained to watch olympics even if you don’t care about a sport.  If people see soccer is on they’ll watch over any other summer olympic sport.  That’s (combined with playing USA) why our women drew incredible numbers... not because the average sports fan knows it’s best on best, no one knows that much about women’s soccer. 

If our men made an Olympic semi it would be equally as massive.  

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Ummm women got 4th place in 2003 world cup very little changed, but it was only a medal in the 2012 olympics that put them over into the limelight.  Casuals that didnt care about soccer, let alone the women got interested.  Corporate canada got interested.  You dont think if Davies and David et al got a high profile medal in the olympics you wouldnt see a similar surge??  

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2 hours ago, Bison44 said:

Ummm women got 4th place in 2003 world cup very little changed, but it was only a medal in the 2012 olympics that put them over into the limelight.  Casuals that didnt care about soccer, let alone the women got interested.  Corporate canada got interested.  You dont think if Davies and David et al got a high profile medal in the olympics you wouldnt see a similar surge??  

That's the thing - it would only have an impact if they got a medal.  If they crash out in the group, no one will notice, soccer is not why people watch the Olympics.  And if you think a medal is a possibility...well, I suppose the fact that I've never seen a unicorn doesn't necessarily mean they absolutely don't exist.

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28 minutes ago, WestHamCanadianinOxford said:

My wife watches soccer at the Olympics, (among everything else) and I have tried to get her to watch other matches on TV and especially live to no avail (other than some Canada games when we were in Edmonton)

Not sure that is a large enough sample, but there you go.

Seems like a very specific sort of soccer viewer. I have never met a fan of the sport who exclusively watches Olympic soccer. I would guess she is an outlier for sure.

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An outlier?? The only time I watch swimming, kayaking, track and field, water polo etc is at the olympics.  The women's program is light years ahead of the mens in terms of interest is because they were able to attract those kind of outlier people by getting to and winning medals at the olympics.  With our young talent, we might have a better shot at beating the US or mexico in a u-23 tournie as opposed to a full mens national team contest.  But hey, lets just send a bunch of unprepared, poorly coached kids to another qualifying tournie and see how that works.  Its been so successful for us in the past.  

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6 hours ago, Obinna said:

Bingo 

Actually no.  We are arguing different things.  Many "soccer fans" in Canada will get Canadian fever when the Olympics come around.  If the men's team is participating, you will have a bunch of people that don't know a thing about the game in this country that will automatically assume that the Canadian team will finish last.  Any sort of result in the Olympics would give the men's team a tremendous amount of exposure.  If David played in an Olympics the way he did in the Gold Cup, he'd be a household name like Penny Oleksiak, for at least a little while.

I think, for the average soccer fan in Canada, in terms of tournaments the Olympics is behind the World Cup, Champions League, Euros, and Europa Cup (maybe).  Its not one that people seek out, but when its on, people pay attention.

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I think would have helped get more avg fans interested if Canada hosted CONCACAF U23 tourney. It’s time for Canada to host more tournaments for the men’s side. We have exciting players and the CPL, I wish the CSA would step up.

and if snow and the cold  is the problem then put it in BC Place, the big O and the Rogers centre ( skydome) 

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2 hours ago, Bison44 said:

An outlier?? The only time I watch swimming, kayaking, track and field, water polo etc is at the olympics.  The women's program is light years ahead of the mens in terms of interest is because they were able to attract those kind of outlier people by getting to and winning medals at the olympics.  With our young talent, we might have a better shot at beating the US or mexico in a u-23 tournie as opposed to a full mens national team contest.  But hey, lets just send a bunch of unprepared, poorly coached kids to another qualifying tournie and see how that works.  Its been so successful for us in the past.  

Sounds like a bad idea.

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1 hour ago, El Hombre said:

Actually no.  We are arguing different things.  Many "soccer fans" in Canada will get Canadian fever when the Olympics come around.  If the men's team is participating, you will have a bunch of people that don't know a thing about the game in this country that will automatically assume that the Canadian team will finish last.  Any sort of result in the Olympics would give the men's team a tremendous amount of exposure.  If David played in an Olympics the way he did in the Gold Cup, he'd be a household name like Penny Oleksiak, for at least a little while.

I think, for the average soccer fan in Canada, in terms of tournaments the Olympics is behind the World Cup, Champions League, Euros, and Europa Cup (maybe).  Its not one that people seek out, but when its on, people pay attention.

This is why the impact would be much lower than the women's success.

Edited by Obinna

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3 hours ago, Bison44 said:

An outlier?? The only time I watch swimming, kayaking, track and field, water polo etc is at the olympics.  

Me too. I think you missed my point bud, because that is completely irrelevant. 

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On 8/4/2019 at 10:52 AM, Bison44 said:

Obinna: When do you think the womens team really punctured the mainstream??  Was it not the Olympics??  You said it yourself, so why wouldnt the same be true if the men could put together a run?  If we start taking these things seriously then maybe the public will as well. Instead of the tired old, canada cant even beat 3rd world countries, we always lose mantra from general public.  If we sent our best and by some miracle everyone got to see Davies, David, Tabla, Millar, Shafflebour, Borges et al getting a bronze medal, i think it would move the needle.  Those kids are going to be the backbone of the mens program for the next 10 years. They'll be at the WC in 2026....why not give the olympics a hard push??  Change the culture as the mouth pieces like to say.   

@El Hombre my response was in the context of this question, which explores whether men's success would puncture the mainstream like it did with the women.

As you said, people don't seek out Olympic soccer, but will watch if it's on. It's bonus soccer content, essentially.

So if David, for example, does well and more people learn about him, he maybe becomes a household name - for at least a little while (until people forget about it because an Olympic medal in men's soccer is not very significant).

It would be brilliant if we could achieve this. It would be big for the program in many ways, but I don't think it would this ground breaking moment like for the women, but rather a big step in the right direction to establishing some credibility.

But consider what would happen if we won a medal but failed to qualify for the world cup. Would all of that credibility evaporate?

I'll pose this question to @Bison44 and @SoccMan as well.

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Olympics as we all know it is still considered a youth tournament, where the woman have no age restrictions. 

I think thats the key difference in understanding how the success will/won't penetrate to soccer fans in Canada from the results of the men vs women . The results of the men qualifying for the Olympics, will only solidify the culture shift amongst the players. Getting a medal would get mainstream attention. 

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