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Canada Wins! Eliminate the U.S. in epic two game series

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Canada advances to the CONCACAF Futsal Championships after an unbelievable 9-7 aggregate win over the United States. FULL REPORT, PHOTOS, QUOTES inside.


Canada poses with the flag and some fans after winning the series
(Photo credit Tammy Moore)

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica – Canada put on a emphatic defensive display in another nail-biting encounter during their 2nd leg qualifier against the United States with a 5-3 victory (9-7 on aggregate) that see them advance to the CONCACAF Futsal Championships.

Laval’s Robert Renaud opened the scoring in the 14th minute with a deflected shot that beat the U.S. keeper Danny Waltman.



Daniel Chamale (left) closes down his defender
(Photo credit Tammy Moore)

The Americans tied it up shortly after in the 15th when Adriano Dos Santos was awarded a controversial goal off a low kick in pass in front of the goal that the Canadians argued did not fully cross the line and photo evidence appeared to support their claim.

The Canadians would not be fazed though as 22 year old Renaud would notch his second of the contest with an unassisted goal in the 17th with another quality strike.

Toronto native Josh Lemos stood tall in goal for Canada throughout the match and a series of big saves allowed the team to go into half with a crucial 2-1 lead.


Goalkeeper Josh Lemos was an impact player and key reason why Canada was able to win the series
(Photo credit Tammy Moore)

The 2nd half saw Canada press much harder offensively and were rewarded with their third of the night in the 22nd when a corner from Nazim Belguendouz went off a defender’s foot and into the U.S. net.

Hamilton’s Ian Bennett was a force to be reckoned with throughout the series and added to Canada’s lead in the 25th with a strong run, finishing with a blistering shot up high that the lead to 5-1.

Renaud would complete the hat trick in the 29th when he found open space by the far post and headed in the goal.

Canada fouled out with more than 10 minutes remaining which could have proved costly. Bennett would be cautioned in the 35th and subsequently gave the Americans a penalty from the 10m spot but Lemos would deny them with a diving right toe save.

The U.S. would then utilize the 5th attacker throughout the rest of the match and soon after Tony Donatelli would get one back in the 38th with a shot dead centre in the middle of the goal.


Jacob Orellana (12) exhibited excellent play throughout both matches
(Photo credit Tammy Moore)

The Americans would add another in the 39th when Daniel Mattos scored off a pass from Donatelli but the Canadian defense would hold on while Lemos made acrobatic saves throughout the half to give Canada the historic victory over their rivals.

Canada now face Costa Rica, Curaçao, and Cuba in Group B in the CONCACAF Futsal Championships starting May 8th at the BN Arena in San José.  The top two teams from each group earn a spot into the FIFA Futsal World Cup Colombia 2016.


Ian Bennett (6) scores with a superb strike to extend Canada's lead
(Photo credit Tammy Moore)

It is Canada’s second consecutive successful regional qualifying campaign after defeating El Salvador in 2012.

Futsal is a unique, fast-paced indoor sport played across Canada and around the world. Canada Soccer is committed to the growth and promotion of the game. At the elite club level, Canada Soccer supports domestic competition through the annual Futsal Canadian Championship. Canada Soccer also supports playing opportunities provided by the National Futsal Team in international competitions including the FIFA Futsal World Cup.


Matias Dimarco winds up for a shot on goal. 
(Photo credit Tammy Moore)

COACH AND PLAYER QUOTES:

“Right now we’re going to enjoy it a little bit. Then we’re back to business right away. This feels amazing. These guys put in the work and sacrificed everything; lives, family, jobs to be here and the last 48 hours we’ve left everything on the field.

We’re on a mission and we know why we’re here and that’s it. They never lost focus on what was at task today.

We’ll spend the next couple of days here going through tape and creating a plan. Our focus was on the Americans and we haven’t thought about he other guys but starting tonight but starting tonight we’ll be studying them and expect a battle. Everyone back home should know we are not done yet.”

Kyt Selaidopoulos, Head Coach

 

"It feels great right now as we’ve been training very hard for this. We knew we had a plan and we stuck to it. We knew not to give up being down 3-0 in the first game and we showed all that heart and that was the key. We’ve come a long way and it’s an honour to wear these colours."

David Campusano, Goalkeeper

Man of the Match Selections:

Canada: Robert Renaud (3 goals)
U.S.A.: Tony Donatelli (1 goal and 1 assist)