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@admin Again this is Robert's new account. It's actually impressive how you and TGAA can singlehandedly ruin intelligent discussion from hundreds of people and turn this forum into a frustrating

If we can't win this group, we only have ourselves to blame. I don't think anyone in our group would be favoured to make it to the World Cup, so if we think we can make a World Cup, we should have no

We can't be scared of Bermuda and Suriname ffs. It's probably a better thing we play decent teams in that round than just beat up on minnows anyway

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4 minutes ago, CanadaFan123 said:

Yes, but the point is that in the long-run one match windows won't help.  For the past window - sure it was a good call but next window we play the USA first so there's no reason we can't play another match.

I am not sure I agree.  I wouldn't be dead-set against it or anything - I am just not sure to needs to be a priority for the next window.  I am not a number cruncher so I may be wrong, but based on what I have read here it seems like...

If we lose and other results don't go our way, we are likely screwed with or without an extra friendly.  We could maybe try a full court press by maxing out friendlies and trying to get across the line, but i am not sure of that would do it.

If we win, we should be good in terms of the hex - plus we have 2 more big NL games to look forward to.

And if we draw, we may not yet be a lock for the hex but we would still win our group and have two more potentially high-point NL games to rely on.

My issue is that there is no guarantee we even win the hypothetical friendly - especially after what could be a huge and emotionally draining game against he US.  I think we can safely assume that the US will want revenge.  A lot.  They will likely come at us with everything they've got right out of the gate and push us hard all game.  We will have to be super disciplined, high energy, and 100% focused to get a result.  And while I think we can beat them, I think a draw may be the more likely good outcome for us.  If we manage that, I am not sure I would want to have them completely refocus and get re-energized for a game that could end up costing us vital points if we slipped up.  Everyone who has watched footy has seen the hangover effect after a team achieves something big.  October to November is plenty of time to refocus and reset.  I am not sure a few days after the 2nd lag against the US would be enough.

I agree that we need to start fully utilizing these windows in the long run.  i am just not sure that needs to start in the upcoming widow.

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Should the ULTIMATE goal not be to get our squad as strong as possible for WCQ?  Win or lose we have a route to the World Cup.  So why not play another match?  Try some new faces out in a competitive environment and see what we're working with.  

My fear is that we get into the Hex and then we're just under prepared, lack cohesiveness/experience and fall on our face as usual.  

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14 minutes ago, CanadaFan123 said:

Should the ULTIMATE goal not be to get our squad as strong as possible for WCQ?  Win or lose we have a route to the World Cup.  So why not play another match?  Try some new faces out in a competitive environment and see what we're working with.  

My fear is that we get into the Hex and then we're just under prepared, lack cohesiveness/experience and fall on our face as usual.  

I think a lot will depend on the result next month.  It is one of the reasons I decided to go down to watch it - it may determine if we are hex-bound or have a really high chance of missing out on 2022 (the path for teams outside the hex has a lot of pitfalls).  

I think if the team gets a result against the US, you will see friendlies prioritized in a way we haven't seen recently.  Just my intuition, of course, but the CSA would have to recognize the value of increased preparation if we actually stand a decent chance of making the WC. 

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19 minutes ago, CanadaFan123 said:

My fear is that we get into the Hex and then we're just under prepared, lack cohesiveness/experience and fall on our face as usual.  

We have a very cohesive squad, I think even the most ardent Herdman holdouts would admit that.  The team got amped and did their job and must do that again in Orlando.  Putting another less galvanizing game right after, is a recipe for a banana skin for me - a great opportunity "to fall on our face" as you say.  The numbers run something like:  an easy match that will yield us 2 points for a win, will also give us -3 for a draw and -8 for a loss. 

25 minutes ago, dyslexic nam said:

If we lose and other results don't go our way, we are likely screwed with or without an extra friendly.  We could maybe try a full court press by maxing out friendlies and trying to get across the line, but i am not sure of that would do it.

If we lose, and the worst but probably likely happens around us, we will be about 16 points behind El Salvador and 7 ish behind Curacao.

With only 4 friendly match days left before the deadline.  That would mean if El Salvador surprisingly did nothing we would have to win 4 friendlies with teams slightly below us.   And Curacao would have the two x25 Nations League finals games, guaranteed. 

If we draw it will be tight, but we will still have those Nation League games against decent opposition, one probably very winnable and the second will at the very least  not cost us anything. 

The job is only half done, and that, I think, needs to be the focus of the window. 

Edited by WestHamCanadianinOxford
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Would we not be able to schedule a friendly though and then cancel it or make it unofficial if we must?  We seemed to have no trouble doing that with Trinidad & Tobago and it looks like Panama/Curacao decided to do that this month. 

We play the USA the first match day of the window and then what?  We just have a half window and call it a day?  Doesn't seem like the greatest idea... at least train for something, even an intrasquad game.  I'm just sick of us breezing past window after window.. we haven't had a two match window in THREE YEARS and we haven't played a friendly in nearly TWO.. that's crazy and unacceptable.  Us beating the USA doesn't excuse the BS that continues.

Edited by CanadaFan123
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1 minute ago, CanadaFan123 said:

Would we not be able to schedule a friendly though and then cancel it or make it unofficial if we must?  We seemed to have no trouble doing that with Trinidad & Tobago and it looks like Panama/Curacao decided to do that this month. 

But if you make it contingent on the result of the game, you are literally canceling days before it would happen.  I am not familiar with the process, but i assume that could have impacts in terms of costs (stadium cancellation, opponent travel costs) and loss of good will. 

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11 minutes ago, CanadaFan123 said:

Would we not be able to schedule a friendly though and then cancel it or make it unofficial if we must?  We seemed to have no trouble doing that with Trinidad & Tobago and it looks like Panama/Curacao decided to do that this month. 

We play the USA the first match day of the window and then what?  We just have a half window and call it a day?  Doesn't seem like the greatest idea... at least train for something, even an intrasquad game.  I'm just sick of us breezing past window after window.. we haven't had a two match window in THREE YEARS and we haven't played a friendly in nearly TWO.. that's crazy.  

I think planning and cancelling, or not cancelling and coming off whatever kind of emotion the US game gives, is a distraction.  Are we going face stiffer tests in the future?  Yes but gambling with that future to prepare for it might not be the best at this stage. 

I will say, any which way, we have to make the March friendly window count.  (Watching them play, I would think a Costa Rica friendly is a no-brainer and then maybe some glamorous overrated but tough opposition from afar.  With all the problems with this format, it does reward you for dreaming big.)  

Edited by WestHamCanadianinOxford
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26 minutes ago, CanadaFan123 said:

Would we not be able to schedule a friendly though and then cancel it or make it unofficial if we must?  We seemed to have no trouble doing that with Trinidad & Tobago and it looks like Panama/Curacao decided to do that this month. 

We play the USA the first match day of the window and then what?  We just have a half window and call it a day?  Doesn't seem like the greatest idea... at least train for something, even an intrasquad game.  I'm just sick of us breezing past window after window.. we haven't had a two match window in THREE YEARS and we haven't played a friendly in nearly TWO.. that's crazy and unacceptable.  Us beating the USA doesn't excuse the BS that continues.

Umm...we literally had a two match window last month. 

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2 minutes ago, SkuseisLoose said:

I think we need a friendly against a team we can play some our players who haven’t had a lot of playing time at the international level like Millar, Crepeau, and Cordova.

Also add Adekugbe, Teibert, Eustaquio, Akindele, some CPL guys etc.  I think we would have a really hungry group of guys who have been waiting a while.  With the right opponent there wouldn't be too much of a risk.  Anyone remember our U23 team dismantling Guyana and Suriname?  I'm imagining something similar.  

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6 minutes ago, SkuseisLoose said:

I think we need a friendly against a team we can play some our players who haven’t had a lot of playing time at the international level like Millar, Crepeau, and Cordova.

For good or bad, right now I don't think we have friendlies in the normal sense.   The fact that FIFA rankings are used for the Hex and that we are on the edge, points-wise, means every game we play, or don't play, means something.

I think until we win the Gold Cup in two summers, that will be the case: FIFA rankings have long memories. 

 

Edited by WestHamCanadianinOxford
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Yeah, the idea of sending a “B” squad (definitely no disrespect, but this really would be a “B” squad insofar as they aren’t seeing game time) at this particular time doesn’t make much sense.  Maybe if you could get a game as an unofficial match, but then you would never get clubs to release them (or burn through a lot of goodwill).  And if it was official, you either pick an opponent so weak that there is no chance they beat you - in which case you gain neither useful points or the experience of tough opposition - or you run the risk of a more challenging opponent bunkering down for a draw or even banging one past you - and there go your points.  

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Just now, SkuseisLoose said:

I mean if we really can’t beat Antigua and Barbuda level team with our depth players and some of our starters we shouldn’t be in the hex in my opinion.

The US given their size and money should really beat us.  They didn't a few days ago.  What should happen, often does not; that is what is great about sports.  Unfortunately we need to guard against that for next few months. 

If all goes well, we are going to have a group of winnable but intense games in the Hex next year and beyond, things happen and people will get a chance. 

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59 minutes ago, CanadaFan123 said:

Also add Adekugbe, Teibert, Eustaquio, Akindele, some CPL guys etc.  I think we would have a really hungry group of guys who have been waiting a while.  With the right opponent there wouldn't be too much of a risk.  Anyone remember our U23 team dismantling Guyana and Suriname?  I'm imagining something similar.  

                     Crepeau 

Cordova      Henry   James.  Adekugbe 

    Eustaquio  Teibert Hutchinson

Millar             Larin            Akindele            

Thats just from people that didn't feature this week and still leaving out people like Johnson, Wotherspoon, ZBG, Ricketts and Tabla. Shows you how far we have come. 

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Re. a November friendly:

St. Kitts, Grenada and Belize all play their second CNL game on sunday the 17th.  I wonder if we could convince any of them to play a third game against us two days later on tuesday the 19th. 

Other than that, if we cant play British Virgin Islands, not playing a friendly at all is a reasonable option in the circumstances. 

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Eyes on the prize which is the USA game IMO. We don't need a distraction of another game. The goal is clear, get a result in Orlando and we do ourselves a huge favor in making the Hex. The fact that CNL knockout games mean we can't lose points is just playing with house money. 

If we lose to the USA and need friendlies to get us into the Hex, schedule them in the new year.

Edited by king1010
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RE: March Friendly

I keep thinking that everyone is waiting until after the November window, and only then there will be some large incentives to be risky.

Between Canada, El Salvador, Curacao, and Panama there will be 2 to 3 teams trying to get points and the team sitting in sixth scared to lose ground.

Honduras is sitting pretty already qualified for Nations League Finals.

Canada and Curacao have decent chances to move onto the Nations League Finals. If either of these teams makes the Nations League Finals , they will likely not need friendlies and will pin their hopes on Nations League in June. If either of those two don't make the semis, then they are in the mix.

For everyone not in the Finals, (El Salvador, likely Panama, and possibly Canada and Curacao), the best coarse of action may be playing each other in a neutral site and laying it all on the line over March and June. A nice mini-tournament with four games each and all the other external factors eliminated may be the best. I these two to four teams are all scheduling friendlies across the globe with random countries there is no way to even guarantee that if you win four games you will be in. The mini tournament at least gives one of these countries a chance.

One other thing to think about is location of the Nations League A Finals. Canada is really nice in June. If the USA is not in the Finals, perhaps the CSA will bid a good chunk of money to host this thing. Is anyone outside of USA, Mexico, and Canada likely to have the bid necessary to stage four matches with only two of them involving the home nation? Could anyone else net enough tickets at the gate to cover costs? If concacaf wants to make money (or a least break even) then I think those three are the best choice. Hopefully it is in Canada.

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Let's just all take a moment to realize how insane it is that teams will need to schedule friendlies to beat up tiny nations in order to acquire FIFA points and qualify for the HEX. The qualifying format is so flawed everyone here is calculating FIFA points instead of celebrating the fact that we beat USA. If we advance to the final 4 in Nation League and don't get a spot in the HEX it would be the dumbest thing ever

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9 minutes ago, canadafan101 said:

Let's just all take a moment to realize how insane it is that teams will need to schedule friendlies to beat up tiny nations in order to acquire FIFA points and qualify for the HEX. The qualifying format is so flawed everyone here is calculating FIFA points instead of celebrating the fact that we beat USA. If we advance to the final 4 in Nation League and don't get a spot in the HEX it would be the dumbest thing ever

I have mixed feeling and that definitely is the down side, I agree.  On the flip side, there are no garbage games for a while and I care about a whole lot of games during the international window, which from an entertainment standpoint is nice.  And for good or bad, we are at a point where one win over the States is not something we can rest on. 

If we do make the Finals, the Hex is ours to lose, even if we are still slightly behind (ie with a draw against the US).  I think.  

34 minutes ago, ardsa said:

For everyone not in the Finals, (El Salvador, likely Panama, and possibly Canada and Curacao), the best coarse of action may be playing each other in a neutral site and laying it all on the line over March and June.

Some great points in the post.  If we can get a friendly against Costa Rica, we would be crazy not to, in my opinion.  They have little to lose, and we have a lot to gain by beating them.

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The last little while has really convinced me (or rather, cemented my belief) that the hex is the better path to the World Cup. The region seems to be getting more competitive, or maybe Nations League is just highlighting it.

Lets say El Salvador takes the 6th spot and the top 5 remains unchanged. That means Canada, Curaçao, Panama, and Haiti (not to mention teams like T&T and Guatemala) will all be vying for that playoff against the 4th place hex team. That is 4 really solid teams, seemingly about as good as everyone in the hex with the exception of Mexico.

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1 hour ago, Kent said:

The last little while has really convinced me (or rather, cemented my belief) that the hex is the better path to the World Cup. The region seems to be getting more competitive, or maybe Nations League is just highlighting it.

Lets say El Salvador takes the 6th spot and the top 5 remains unchanged. That means Canada, Curaçao, Panama, and Haiti (not to mention teams like T&T and Guatemala) will all be vying for that playoff against the 4th place hex team. That is 4 really solid teams, seemingly about as good as everyone in the hex with the exception of Mexico.

If they all started on even footing today, i believe Curacao and Canada are the strongest of the teams you mention, also sounds like a really fun tournament to watch! 

Once we factor in CONCACAF refs, no VAR, and all that, i agree that i'd rather not play that tournament if high stakes are involved.  However, if we're worried about playing those 6 teams, why exactly are we looking to go to the World Cup?  Maybe we're better off having fun with Nations League and be done with it. 

Its an awful long drive to the restaurant just to see it if you can't afford and enjoy a drink, meal and dessert once you arrive.  I feel we can out play these guys, just depends on if CONCACAF can give us a fair and even playing field.

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