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Canada Looking to Knockout Jamaica

Zambrano’s Men looking to take out the reggae boys

French Guiana v Canada: Group A - 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

This was the first step in the Octavio Zambrano era. He had to start with a new culture of winning as well as playing with confidence and mental strength, to get through a tough group stage that wasn’t kind but was able to reach the Quarterfinals.

After a nervy but solid win over French Guiana and solid draws against both Costa Rica and Honduras, Canada now finds themselves inside the knockout stages with a Quarterfinals tie with Jamaica who themselves have looked vulnerable after a trip to the 2015 final and then a shambolic event in World Cup Qualifying.

That means additions and subtractions can begin for Zambrano and he has already added Orlando City Striker Cyle Larin to the mix and while that is a good thing, it will be very interesting what he can do being paired up top with Alphonso Davies.

This is the dream scenario that Canada has been dreaming about. The young attacker from the Vancouver Whitecaps joining forces with Larin who has been doing a fantastic job at the Purple Palace in the land of the Magic Kingdom.

What these two terrors can do wearing the Red and White of the Canadian kits and to strike terror in the defenders of the opposition can give hopes and dreams of reaching that next World Cup while using this Gold Cup as a stepping stone.

El Salvador v Canada: Group B - 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

But while that may be the case, Jamaica are no slouches either. Just as Milan Borjan is a solid keeper, Andre Blake who plays for the Philadelphia Union is a world class young keeper himself as he continues to improve his play for his national team.

The Speedy Left Full back in Kemar “Taxi” Lawrence can be trouble defending as well as catching up to strikers when he is going up and down one of the sides, then there is Je-Vaugh Watson in the midfield from the New England Revolution that can cause problems with the best of them.

But the strikers are the ones who can give the biggest fits in Darren Mattocks of the Portland Timbers and doing well in the United Soccer Leagues Charleston Battery in Romario Williams as he continues to score goals at an amazing rate.

So while Canada still has some work to do and Jamaica is going to be a very tough opponent, you can already tell that the improvements that Zambrano has made are working and I believe this will be a fantastic Quarterfinal for Les Rouge.