An excellent performance from Canada to round out the group stage. A hattrick from Jonathan David, a potentially one from Lucas Cavallini as well (his second goal might have been an own goal) give Canada a dominant 7-0 win. Junior Hoilett also scored.
It is Canada’s biggest ever win at a Concacaf Gold Cup, and they already have more goals than they have ever scored at one tournament before. Canada now move on to likely face the winner of Costa Rica and Haiti, which will be played tomorrow night.
76’ - GOAL CANADA - And it’s 7-0. Jonathan David has a hattrick. Cuba have just lost all their shape and Canada are playing relentlessly right now.
71’ - GOAL CANADA - Jonathan David OH MY GOODNESS. A wonder strike from the youngster and he’s got his second of the match. He is absolutely having himself a tournament.
70’ - Canada incredibly dominant right now but unable to find the back of the net right now. Canada makes their final sub bringing on Liam Millar for Alphonso Davies. I think it is wise to give Millar some minutes in case he is needed as a sub in the later rounds.
60’ Couple of subs for Canada here as Ashton Morgan gets his first look of the tournament here in relief of Cavallini, who as aforementioned other than his penalty was just pure class today. Kamal Miller also makes his national team debut in relief of Doneil Henry.
54’ - MISSED PENALTY Cavallini with just a horrendous penalty. He will be forgiven because of the rest of his performance but that was really, really bad.
50’ - GOAL CANADA Just lethal on the counter from Canada as Davies and David combine again. Hoilett gets the final goal on a rebound. This is already the most goals (10) Canada has ever scored at a Concacaf Gold Cup.
48’ - Canada needs to be smart here in the second half. Cuba are going into challenges hard here and a number of Canadian players have already taken knocks.
That was the best half of the tournament so far from Canada. Keep in mind, Cuba are clearly a very poor side which bodes well for Nations League qualifiers coming up later this year. However, Canada has really demonstrated its quality as well. Jonathan David, Junior Hoilett and Lucas Cavallini were all incredible that half for Canada.
45’- CANADA GOAL! And Cavallini AGAIN! Canada are just ripping Cuba apart down the left flank. A very impressive first half performance.
43’ - CANADA GOAL! A bit of quality for Canada before the end of the half. Some brilliant combination play from Davies and David before crossing to Cavallini for his second of the match. His side-footed finish was absolute class.
38’ - Canada a little pedestrian towards the end of the half. Regardless of the opponent they would do well to work a little bit more on holding the ball here and making smart passes. Cuba aren’t really threatening, but Canada need to set their own standards.
22’ - CANADA GOAL! Cavallini with a goal that I probably could have scored as he taps the ball into the back of the net after a David cross is redirected off the post by a Cuba defender. Looking comprehensive for Canada now.
14’ - Should really be 2-0 for Canada, Lucas Cavallini misses a great chance from Godinho. Canada have struggled a little bit just with the pace of this game so far. They have been a little untidy in their passing.
3’ - CANADA GOAL! Canada come out flying! A great cross from Junior Hoilett finds Jonathan David in the middle. The young striker now has three goals and an assist in just two starts at this tournament. Plenty more coming from him, surely.
Lineup: Borjan; Davies, Henry, Cornelius, Godinho; Piette, Osorio, Arfield; David, Cavallini, Hoilett
It looks like Canada goes basically with their best eleven for the match, which is probably a wise move. Atiba Hutchinson and Mark-Anthony Kaye rest after busy nights against Mexico. Alphonso Davies, meanwhile, will play left back.
Wednesday was a bit of a reality check for the Canadian men’s national team. Expecting them to come out and dominate the best team in the region, regardless of missing players, was always probably a bit naive.
The good news for Canada is that the blow which Mexico struck was far from fatal, and probably inconsequential. The team now go into their final group game against a Cuban side that has lost 7-0 to Mexico and 3-0 to Martinique, not to mention their captain to defection.
They will head into Bank of America stadium tonight with most of their key players reasonably rested, and they’ll probably rest a few more, like Atiba Hutchinson and Alphonso Davies. It is also a chance to pick up some momentum heading into a quarter-final matchup likely to come against Costa Rica.
Barring a ridiculously unlikely multi-goal win by Martinique against Mexico, Canada advance to the knockout rounds for the second straight tournament with a victory. A draw would almost certainly do the trick as well, although evidently would not be well-received by fans reasonably expecting a big win today for Canada.
This match probably gives John Herdman one more chance to see what he has in a few players. There still isn’t really a definitive answer as to who should play in the left back role, so perhaps Toronto FC’s Ashtone Morgan gets a look. We also haven’t seen much of Liam Millar, who could be an important attacking option off the bench later in the tournament.
It is also a chance for Canada to weigh up Cuba ahead of their home and away series with the nation as part of the upcoming CONCACAF Nations League season. It won’t give them a sense of the degree of difficulty playing away at Cuba, but will at least give them some intel on their opponents.
Other than that, there probably isn’t all that much to be gleaned from this game. Again, Canada should win reasonably comfortably and by multiple goals. This match is mostly about keeping the standards high heading into the knockout stages.
How to Watch:
Match date/time: Sunday, June 23, 6:00 p.m. ET
TV channel: TSN 1/4/5, RDS, Fox Sports
Live stream: TSN GO, RDS GO