Canada shocked the CONCACAF region by finishing with the best record in regional World Cup qualifying and reaching the nation’s first men’s World Cup since 1986. Now manager John Herdman will hope to turn more heads at the 2022 FIFA World Cup as his squad builds toward the showcase event.
Les Rouges will play a pair of September international friendlies at neutral venues in Europe against fellow World Cup opposition. They first match up against World Cup host nation Qatar on Friday, followed by a meeting with Uruguay on Tuesday.
The Qatar match presents a unique test. While the Maroon are not considered one of the favorites to advance from World Cup Group A, they are an incredibly deep and experienced side with an established playing style which could cause an upset or two in the quest to reach the knockout stage on home soil.
Herdman will be targeting the same for his Canada side which will face what on paper is tougher opposition in Group F. Compounding the challenge for Les Rouges is the fact that this will be their first opponent outside of the North American region since their World Cup qualifying journey began in 2018.
Canada vs Qatar TV channel, live stream
|Date||Friday, Sept. 23|
|Canada TV channel||Telus Optik TV Ch. 980|
|Canada Streaming||fuboTV Canada|
The international friendly between Canada and Qatar from Generali Arena in Vienna, Austria will be broadcast by OneSoccer which is streamed on fuboTV Canada.
Canada vs Qatar lineups
Given there shouldn’t be too much suspense around many of the spots on Canada’s final World Cup roster, Herdman will likely use these two September friendlies to build chemistry and tactical understanding. The star players in the Canada squad, such as Alphonso Davies and Jonathan David, should see ample playing time.
The few decisions Herdman will have to make are mostly at the back. Defenders Derek Cornelius and Joel Waterman, who joins the team for the first time in 2022, are fighting for spots on the roster.
Injured players Doneil Henry (Toronto FC), Atiba Hutchinson (Beşiktaş JK), and David Wotherspoon (St. Johnstone FC) are unavailable for both September matches.
Canada projected starting lineup (4-3-3): Borjan (GK) — Waterman, Vitoria, Miller — Laryea, Eustaquio, Kaye, Davies — Buchanan, Larin, David
While Qatar are not expected to threaten to win the World Cup trophy, the squad could cause problems in a soft Group A.
Eight players in the current squad for the international friendlies have over 75 international caps, while three have over 100, including 31-year-old captain Hassan Al-Haydos who has amassed an incredible 163 appearances internationally, tying him for 19th all-time. He has not been in the squad since last fall, however, and will now look to reintegrate.
Almoez Ali, the nation’s top active goalscorer with 38 tallies, is closing in on that 75-appearance mark, currently sitting on 72. He is in great club form at Al-Duhail, with four goals and two assists through the season’s first eight games across league and cup play.
Qatar projected starting lineup (3-5-2): Zakaria (GK) — Miguel, Al-Rawi, Waad — Hassan, Afif, Hatem, Asad, Al-Haydos — Ali, Alaaeldin.
Canada vs Qatar best bet, prediction
Odds via Caesars (USA) & Sports Interaction (Canada).
Canada are ranked No. 43 in the world, five places better than Qatar, and they’re favored in this match.
However, the friendly should prove a real challenge for Les Rouges. Qatar have provided their senior men’s team with plenty of international experience in recent years in advance of the 2022 World Cup, significantly more than Canada have. That included participation in the 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup, where they matched Canada by advancing to the semifinals.
Oddsmakers believe this match could be a low-scoring affair, but it’s not a bad shout to believe both attack-minded teams could find the back of the net in this match. Alphonso Davies and Jonathan David should both play for Canada and they could present problems for Qatar, while the defensive line for Les Rouges will also be in trial mode.
- Pick: Canada 1-1 Qatar
- Prediction: Both teams to score (2.00 on Sports Interaction)
to score Y / N
|+105 / -135||2.00 / 1.64|
|Over / Under
|+122 / -155||2.28 / 1.56|