TORONTO, Canada—The Canadian men’s national team have been making light work out of their opposition in 2022 World Cup Qualifying thus far, and Saturday night against Aruba was no different.
Deploying a ‘weaker’ side than perhaps some were expecting, Canada still poured in seven goals, without really being threatened defensively.
Lucas Cavallini opened the scoring in the 18th minute before Junior Hoilett doubled Canada’s lead two minutes later from the penalty spot. Cavallini would get his second of the match—and 16th for Canada in 20 matches—right before halftime as the red-and-white entered the break with a comfortable 3-0 lead.
CF Montreal fullback Zachary Brault-Guillard, who checked into the match in place of Hoilett—who appeared to tweak something in his hamstring—made his impact felt early on in the second half, scoring a wonderful goal, his first in a Canada shirt, to extend their lead to four.
And then, the big guns, Alphonso Davies, Jonathan David, and Cyle Larin would all check into the match, with all three players finding their names on the scoresheet before the night was over.
The game would finish 7-0 as Canada sits atop Group B after three matches, setting up what should be, as John Herdman puts it, a hell of a match on Tuesday vs. Suriname.
“We knew Aruba would be a tougher test than the Cayman Islands, but, the conditions were tough here for the lads. It was hot and humid but they pushed through,” said John Herdman, Men’s National Team Head Coach, following Saturday’s match. “Tonight was about getting them (Alphonso Davies, Jonathan David, Cyle Larin) the feel in a match condition, in a Canadian shirt to be part of the first mission. They deserve it, they’re our top players.”
“All of these games pose a different mental challenge, but, you have to go into the games with the right mentality and be patient,” added Mark-Anthony Kaye, the Man of the Match. “We had to be persistent and trust our tactical ideas and eventually the team that’s defending is going to slip up and give you the chance to capitalize.”
From the first round of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ Qualifiers, the Group B winner (the winner of Canada and Suriname on Tuesday) will face the Group E winner (either Haiti or Nicaragua) in a second-round, head-to-head series. The winner from that second round then advances to the Concacaf Final Round of eight nations in which each nation will play each opponent twice (once at home and once on the road).