They were successful. Despite most projections before qualification began, Canada has qualified for its first men’s World Cup in 37 years, becoming the first team from the CONCACAF region to secure a spot in Qatar in 2022. They did it by defeating Jamaica 4-0 in the qualifying cycle’s final home game.
With a win in Toronto, Canada will be assured of placing in one of the top three spots in Concacaf qualification for Qatar 2022. Their most recent World Cup appearance was in Mexico in 1986, where they finished last in their group and failed to score.
Canada led 2-0 at halftime after 2 goals from Cyle Larin and Tajon Buchanan, before Junior Hoilett and an Adrian Mariappa own goal clinched the triumph.
It was a party atmosphere from the first minute at BMO Field in Toronto, and Les Rouges didn’t take long to score after only 13 minutes. On a brilliant through pass from midfield master Stephen Eustaquio, Cyle Larin beat Jamaica’s goalkeeper, and Canada never looked back.
After squandering a few chances, the Canadians took a more comfortable lead with a goal by Tajon Buchanan just before halftime. They eventually added two more goals in the closing 10 minutes of the game to complete the score and formally end the celebrations.
It was the icing on the cake for Canada’s surprising qualification run, especially after coach John Herdman and his team had to overcome the difficult preliminary rounds to get here.
It had been a long time since Les Rouges had even made it to the final round of regional qualifying — they hadn’t done so since 1997 — and the squad had to play some of the most difficult matches without its players. Canada, on the other hand, displayed borderline arrogance by topping the table with only one loss thus far and one match remaining. They are anticipated to finish as the best team in the area, heightening hopes for what they could do at the World Cup, barring any unexpected results on the last day.
The United States, Mexico, Costa Rica, and Panama are all vying for the final two Concacaf automatic qualification slots for the 2022 World Cup, which begins on November 21. Mexico and the United States, who play El Salvador and Costa Rica on Wednesday, both need a draw in their last qualification game to qualify for Qatar.
To finish in the top three, Costa Rica, which is now in fourth place, would need a strong win over the United States and other outcomes to go their way. In the eight-team table, the fourth-placed country advances to a play-off against the winner of Wednesday’s Oceania qualifying final between the Solomon Islands and New Zealand.