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Free kick

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  1. https://www.sportsnet.ca/soccer/alphonso-davies-rise-altering-perception-canadian-soccer/ Paragraph 4, 5 and 6 in the above article is significant. Because it is the first piece that i have seen that affirms what may of us (myself included) have been saying for many years of following the “Goings on” of our players who go overseas to play in the UK. Its pretty irrefutable now, your career will not progress and your game will not progress by going to play in england. Moreso if you go to the lower divisions. yes, i get that many of those guys probably didnt have what it takes (talentwise) to succeed beyond where they ended up. But numbers cant lie. Deguzman, Hargr**v** (if we want to count him), Davies, Staltieri etc when to play in Germany and ended up on good clubs, and even played in europe. They even pawned their experience to end up at other first division top clubs in spain and England. But in england, everyones careers stalls. They might get a quick stint in the prem but little more than that. Would stalteri’ have ever played at Tottenham if he would started his route in the championship instead of at Bremen? What about Harg**eav** Cant help but think about those two kids who stupidly left the TFC academy prematurely to for that dead end opportunity at QPR. It looked like dead end at the time, it smelled like a dead end, it was indeed a dead end. Now these kids are not even on the MNT depth charts anymore. They are not even on TFC’s radar anymore.
  2. Looking at the western conference draw now. The draw is supposed to be random but the balls are miraculously falling into place so that regional rivals are grouped together.
  3. TFC draws NE, Mtl, DCU whitecaps.: so far: Sea, FCD, SJ
  4. Yes. Thank you. It was 2003, not 2007. 2007, was to be forgotten unfortunately.
  5. What you say is very likely true. But, to me, there is something to be said for qualifying honnorably. Beating the sides that you are suppose beat in your region, gaining respect as national team from opponents and home fans, proving that you are good, going to the world cup with confidence.....etc. This is as important as being granted a spot for the WC IMHO. As much as i hated the previous (Pre pandemic) format because it was unfair mathematically, i also hated the fact that we would never of gotten to play the good sides in the region and it would have been a tough sell at home when your qualifying sched is almost entirely full of oppoenents that are tiny island nations that for logistical or population reasons cannot be expected to ever be internationally competetive. Fortunately, this new format finally allows us to qualify honnorably.
  6. Yes. He played CB for Canada at CB in the U20 WC in 2007. He was ultimately named to the tournament best eleven. We have never had that kind of achievement since. And that 2007 squad arguably achieved the greatest performance by a mens NT team since qualifying for the WC by the senior team in 1986. CB is our achilles heel on the NT. There is no real standout at that position so what is there to lose by playing him at CB. The position doesnt require the greatest mobility and its about smarts, he would fit the bill. Its a gamble worth taking IMHO. Edit: it was 2003, not 2007, the year that Cnd made to the quarterfinals and lost 2-1 to Spain at the U20 WC.
  7. In that interview he gave to (i think it was) TSN. He pretty much said, he was leaning towards a Bundesliga club. He seems to have a right attitude. He wants to go to big club that will play in europe (CL). But at the same time, he doesnt want to go to some club where he will be forced to sit on the bench in favour of some past-his-prime-glamour-guy. RB Leipzig and Bayer Leverkusen, really fit the bill. Hope these go through. RB leipzig is hated by other clubs in Germany because of their rapid assension and that their ownership structure resembles a north american franchise. But other than that, i believe its a perfect fit for him. They favour talented young players, they they will spend generously on young players, they are very talented but overloaded with name-players up front, they are doing really well in CL, and it looks like they will be back in CL next year.
  8. Not sure about that, qualitywise, we are much better now than we were at that time. In 1986 there was a bigger gap between the top sides at the WC and the bottom 4-6 sides in the 24 team tournament. Since then pretty much most of the global super powers remained in tact at top of the pecking order but a lot more sides have clustered themselves in that next tier and the one after that. And the gap has closed between the top tier and the next tier. There is more quality talent comming from african nations. The top clubs in europe have opened themselves up to the world to look for talent but wasnt the case 1986. So the problem is that everyone got better at a faster rate, and not that we got worst. I watched all the games in 1986. We played not to embarrased ourselves and it was fine at the time because the thinking was that this was practice run for the next 4-8 years. But now that we know what happened in the next 30 years, 1986 it leaves a bit of bitter taste. We have had much better teams than that 1986 squad but still never managed to qualify so that tells me that the problem is that the world improved (especially concacaf) much faster than we did and not so much that we were good in 1986.
  9. Might have been a better result for Montreal had they been able to play at Stade Saputo. Honestly, i think that the hardness of the surface and ensuing high bounces and difficulty in the controlling the ball, hurt Montreal much more than the Honduran side. I dont think that there is any question that talent-wise, Montreal had the upper hand by far. But those fractions of seconds that are lost because of high ball bounces, means that the team with the better talent cant get into rhythm and flow. And better teams can play and move the ball quicker which you cant do because you spend the whole friggen watching the ball in the air and waiting for it to land on the ground. High ball bounces nullifies all the advantages that the more talented team would have. No soccer should be played on that kind of suface.
  10. There was supposed to be more news this year about 2026. I recall at the time that the WC was awarded to the joint bid, that the Organizing committee indicated that the final list of host cities would be announced in 2020. This list should (one would suspect) coincide with the other info like “ whose automatically in”.
  11. Yes. And there are also the intangible factors. It will be easier to stir up interest and keep squads motivated by playing in the hex. Thats due to the type of opponents, the regional rivalries factor, the familiarity of the opposing players and the geo-political..etc. There is greater pride in wearing the jersey when the setting feels like the matches you are playing feel important to you and your countrymen. WCQ in concacaf can feel very different depending on the opponents. A hex opponent can offer up a packed stadium in professional venue whereas the repechage route conjures up images of dusty fields, empty stadiums and backwater settings. Thats not going to sell well in canada because it will look and feel like your in the second division. The psyche of playing in that kind of setting can, in itself, adversely affect results in the short and long term.
  12. In Vancouver’s case, looks like the exchange rate accounts for the operating loss. In Montreal’s case, the sheer size of that negative of the operating margins cant be explained by just the exchange rate. In MLS, like other sports leagues, salaries in are paid in USD but revenues are in Canadian dollars. That make Cnd clubs at something like a 20% disadvantage as far as spending on players.
  13. If there is a good thing about the outcome of that game, its that TFC managed to win and yet played poorly enough for any coach to conclude that that kind of performance wont suffice in the final. So he will have to shuffle things a bit. I dont believe that Ciman has two good games in him at playing defense. Yes, he plays the ball at his feet really well, but his marking and defensive play makes me nervous. Endoh has scored some goals down the stretch so the coach has to reward him. But at the same time, you would see brain cramps, sub par play or invisibility at other points of the game. I only see minor improvement in his game since going down and coming up. He works hard, but i am not sure he should ever be starter in this league if you want to be a good team. Deleon scores but through out the year, i often found myself wondering why they saw in him when they decided to sign him. Goal scoring is like the blind squirrel finding the nuts every now and then. You get playing time, odds are better that you will get a goal every now and then. But if you are a blind squirrel, you are still a blind squirrel.
  14. Yeah. I noticed that as well. what the **** was he complaining about? Very poor effort there. For anyone who plans to watch the replay of that goal again, keep an eye on number 24 (Gressel) throughout that play.
  15. The thing with using DP money on domestics slot, is that its humongous benefit in league with quotas. In the CFL they call these guys ratio busters. By securing competitive or elite domestics players, you can be more selective and have a larger margin of error with your TAM signings. You have less holes in your lineup and you have a ton of flexibility in roster construction. I believe that this has been a key to TFC’s success. This is more important given that IMHO the top end of US international talent has slipped in recent years. They are not IMHO where they were when they had Donovan, Dempsey etc. We are at the point now, judging from the recent concacaf matches, where our top end (top 2-3 players) might be on par or better. Sorry but, in the games i saw in recent years, i am yet to see what the fuss is about Pulisich is. Or even Morris. I dont think you will see, in the future, US domestic talent coming back to MLS having the same impact than Bradley and Altidore. I get and can see that Bradley has slipped a little. And i can see the argument that he’s not worth the money. But if you try to replace him straight up with a domestic, your taking risks. Fraser can look good, but is he really ready at his age, to take on that load? If not Fraser, then who else is there?
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