When you lay your eyes on this squad, you realize that there are young individuals who have the potential to achieve greatness. It’s a sentiment that has never applied to the Canadian National team.
John Herdman made his intentions clear by emphasizing on youth. The soon-to-be Bayern Munich player, Alphonso Davies, is joined by the likes of Zachary Brault-Guillard (19) of Olympique Lyonnais II, Liam Millar (18) of Liverpool, Jonathan David (18) of Gent and Alessandro Busti (18) of Juventus Reserves. Notably, Ballou Tabla, ex-Montreal Impact player and now Barcelona B recently made his decision to play for Canada and may make his debut for the country against Dominica.
As well as that, Cyle Larin (23) of Besiktas, Jay Chapman (24) of Toronto FC and Samuel Piette (23) of the Montreal Impact round out a young nucleus. When you sprinkle in some veteran help in Scott Arfield (29) of Rangers and Junior Hoilett (27) of Cardiff City, you have an exciting and invigorating squad.
A player to keep a watchful eye on is no other than Jonathan David. In his 1st professional season, the Ottawa native has been on a scoring tear of late accumulating 6 goals in 7 matches across the Belgian Pro League and Europa League Qualifiers. His tremendous efforts led him to ink a contract lasting till 2022.
Zachary Brault-Guillard could be given the chance at right-back which is one of Canada’s weaker positions. Doneil Henry is back on the International scene after a 2-year absence. Atiba Hutchinson was not called up for the match against the US Virgin Islands.
Canada will face-off vs. the US Virgin Islands in their 1st match of the CONCACAF Nations League on September 9th. They will then clash against Dominica at Toronto’s BMO Field on the 16th of October followed by a match vs St. Kitts and Nevis on November 18th. They will round out the inaugural CONCACAF Nations League when they host French Guiana on March 26th.
The purpose of the CONCACAF Nations League is to ensure that the minnows will play meaningful games. Additionally, the Inclusion of the Nations League eliminates meaningless friendly matches.
For those keeping track, Zachary Brault-Guillard, Derek Cornelius, Jay Chapman, Liam Millar, Jonathan David and Alessandro Busti can be cap-tied if they play in the next match.
This squad offers a mixture of experience and a great deal of youth.
The Canada roster in full:
Goalkeepers: Maxime Crépeau, Ottawa Fury FC (USL); Milan Borjan, Red Star Belgrade (Serbia); Alessandro Busti, Juventus Primavera (Italy).
James Pantemis, Simon Thomas
Defenders: Zachary Brault-Guillard, Olympique Lyonnais (France); Manjrekar James, FC Fredericia (Denmark); Derek Cornelius, FK Javor Ivanjica (Serbia); Dejan Jakovic, Los Angeles FC (MLS); Marcel de Jong, Vancouver Whitecaps (MLS), David Edgar, Ottawa Fury FC (USL); Doneil Henry, Vancouver Whitecaps (MLS); Ashtone Morgan, Toronto FC (MLS).
Midfielders: Samuel Piette, Montreal Impact (MLS); Russell Teibert, Vancouver Whitecaps (MLS); David Wotherspoon, St. Johnstone FC (Scotland); Scott Arfield, Glasgow Rangers (Scotland); Jonathan Osorio, Toronto FC (MLS); Alphonso Davies, Vancouver Whitecaps (MLS); Jay Chapman, Toronto FC (MLS); Liam Millar, Liverpool FC U-23 (England); Liam Fraser, Toronto FC (MLS), Ballou Tabla, Barcelona B (La Liga 2).
Forwards: Cyle Larin, Besiktas (Turkey); Junior Hoilett, Cardiff City (Wales); Tosaint Ricketts, Toronto FC (MLS);Tesho Akindele, FC Dallas (MLS); Lucas Cavallini, Puebla FC (Mexico); Jonathan David, KAA Gent (Belgium)
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