TORONTO, Canada—The Canadian men’s national team received a huge blow on Saturday as it was announced that superstar Alphonso Davies would miss the 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup due to an ankle injury.
Davies injured his ankle in training earlier this week and has returned to his club FC Bayern München to begin his recovery ahead of the 2021-22 season. A replacement for Davies has not yet been announced.
Canada’s depth at wing and fullback will be put to the test here. But as the old saying goes, when one door closes, another one opens, and perhaps someone like budding star Tajon Buchanan will step up and seize the opportunity after a terrific Olympic tournament run earlier this year, followed by a strong start to the campaign with Bruce Arena’s New England Revolution.
Other players to keep an eye on include Alistair Johnston and Richie Laryea, both of whom will be relied upon heavily at fullback. Centre-back Kamal Miller is also capable of playing out wide if needed, while someone like a Zachary Brault-Guillard may be called into the side to further shore up the position.
Nevertheless, losing Davies, who would’ve been hands down the best player at the tournament, is a huge pill for this Canadian side to swallow and their depth will be put to the test.
The Concacaf Gold Cup runs from July 10 to August 1, with Canada’s opening group stage match on July 11 against Martinique in Kansas City, KS, USA. Canada will also face Haiti on June 15 and USA on June 18 in the group phase.