When Canada finally makes their debut at the World Cup in Qatar in 2022, it will signal the end of a dry spell that lasted 36 years.

It is anticipated that the team will have a difficult time advancing out of a difficult group that also includes Belgium and Croatia; however, the team’s strong performance in qualifying has raised hopes that they may yet spring a surprise or two and advance to the knockout phase for the very first time.

Only once before, in 1986, did Canada compete in a World Cup event; it was held in Mexico at that time. Their historic debut was overshadowed by three losses in the group stages against France, Hungary, and the team that was known as the Soviet Union at the time.

The participation in the competition in 1986 was the pinnacle moment for Canadian football, which has not been surpassed for a number of decades, including up until the present time.

However, the event was also a humbling one for the players, as the team failed to score even a single goal while playing for 270 minutes and was penalized five times for giving up goals.

They were one of just two teams at the competition to not score a single point, the other being Iraq, who had a better goal difference than the Canadians did. The Canadians were the team who finished in last place.

When Canada kicks off its run in the World Cup on November 23 against Belgium, they will be hoping to rediscover the form that got them through qualifying.

The team finished first in their qualification group for the Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) tournament, winning eight of their 14 games and achieving stunning victory over higher-ranked opponents such as the United States and Mexico.

The spotlight is on Davies

Alphonso Davies, who is 22 years old and possesses an extraordinary amount of potential, will serve as a source of motivation for Canadians in Qatar.

Davies is famous for his lightning-fast speed, his ability to dribble and shoot, and the fact that he plays left wing-back for his club team, Bayern Munich, which is one of the most successful teams in Germany.

For Canada, he frequently plays further forward, which gives him the option to occupy spaces behind Canada’s prolific frontman Jonathan David and provides him with a higher degree of control over the direction of attacks.

Davies, who is widely considered to be the best player in the CONCACAF grouping of countries, will soon have the opportunity to showcase his talent on the international stage.

His career to this point has been marked by a variety of victories, including four Bundesliga championships, multiple domestic cup victories, a winners medal from the UEFA Champions League, and a victory in the FIFA Club World Cup.

There is a rough road ahead

In spite of the rising anticipation surrounding Davies and David, both of whom are 22 years old, it seems unlikely that Canada will advance out of Group F given the caliber of its opponents, Croatia and Belgium.

However, head coach John Herman has encouraged his team to take advantage of the opportunity to compete in the tournament and has urged his players to test the boundaries of their abilities when going up against players of the caliber of Croatian superstar Luka Modric and Belgium’s plethora of world-class athletes.

He has stated that the team has the potential to bring about a “generational change” in Canada, which is a place where football has frequently taken a back seat to ice hockey and other sports that are more popular, and “create memories that will live forever” for the country’s 38 million residents.

A competitive showing in the group stage would still herald significant progress for Canadian football as the country prepares to host the 2026 World Cup alongside the United States and Mexico. Although a run to the knockout phase is unlikely, a competitive showing in the group stage would still herald significant progress.

The competition that will take place this year will provide Davies and David with a springboard from which they will have the opportunity to perhaps propel their already successful careers to to higher heights in the future.

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