Canada National Soccer Team
Canada isn’t one of the footballing powerhouses in CONCACAF (The Confederation of North, Central America, and Caribbean Association Football). Still, growing interest in the sport has led to a rise in the national team’s quality in recent years.
While they don’t have any major tournament successes, they do have a couple of small pieces of silverware in their trophy room. They go into the Qatar World Cup 2022 as relative outsiders.
Want to see how The Canada National Soccer Team will do in the Qatar 2022 World Cup? Click the links below to bet on your favorite World Cup matches!
Wednesday November 23 – Belgium vs Canada (Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan; kick-off 8pm).
Sunday November 27 – Croatia vs Canada (Khalifa International Stadium, Al Rayyan; kick-off 5pm).
Thursday December 1 – Canada vs Morocco (Al Thumama Stadium, Al Khor; kick-off 4pm).
Canada National Soccer Team: Competition History and Key Players
Canada National Soccer Team History
Starting In Toronto
Football began to take off in Canada in the 1870s when universities in Toronto started playing the game, encouraged by students exchanged with British universities. Various teams that represented Canada went on tours, particularly in Western Europe. None of these could call themselves the official national team, but they were made up of almost all Canadian-born players.
Despite the relative lack of organization, the quality of play in the country progressed quickly. This became clear to the world when the Canada National Soccer Team took home the gold medal for football at the 1904 Olympics. However impressive an achievement it was, though, it must be noted that there were only two other teams present, both of whom represented the United States.
Most international matches involving Canada played in the first half of the 20th century were against US teams. However, a number of tours saw the Canada National Soccer Team face off against teams such as England and Australia. The team’s first official match was against the Socceroos in 1924, and they lost 3-2. However, travel made it a necessity for most of the fixture list to be made up of games against the US and other regional rivals.
The Canada National Soccer Team had briefly joined FIFA before the war, but in 1946, they fully integrated, and several years later, the team’s first run of proper competitive fixtures would be underway.
In 1957, after a 30-year break from playing as an official national team, the team took part in North America’s World Cup qualification campaign. However, the campaign ultimately failed, and the team would have to wait until 1986 to get their first World Cup finals appearance.
At the tournament, they lost all three matches but were widely praised for the determination and grit that they showed throughout. This would be their first and only appearance in the competition until the team runs out at the Qatar World Cup in 2022.
Gold Cup Successes
That doesn’t mean the Canada national team had a 35-year-long barren spell, though. In fact, the year before their singular World Cup appearance, they won the Gold Cup and repeated the feat again in 2000.
Since the turn of the century, the team has fluctuated wildly in the FIFA world rankings. While they were 122nd in 2014, they jumped up all the way to 33rd in February 2022. These fluctuations have left fans flipping between hope and disappointment. But, in any case, the team’s 43rd position in the rankings ahead of the Qatar World Cup suggests that this Canadian team isn’t far from being as good as it’s ever been.
Canadian National Soccer Team Trivia
- Canada will play in consecutive World Cup finals for the first time in 2026 as they automatically qualify due to co-hosting the tournament with Mexico and the United States of America.
- Both of Canada’s most capped players and top goalscorers still play for the team. Atiba Hutchinson and Cyle Larin help spearhead what many fans consider the golden generation for the Canadian side.