Taking charge of Canada

On 26 July 2009, it was a Sunday, if I recall correctly, I was appointed the manager of Canada to succeed the truly awful Dale Mitchell. He had succeeded in getting Canada exactly 1 point in World Cup Qualifying after 5 matches and to get the squad bounced from the World Cup. Clearly it was time for a change. So here I be.

When they appointed me, the Canadian Soccer Association didn’t seriously expect me to qualify for the 2010 World Cup (I am, after all, 10 points out of first and second and 5 points out of 4th, which would get me into the play-in game). They expect me not to embarrass myself (which I think is probable) and to “keep half a mind on building for the future.” It’s a future I fear I won’t be around to see. Nevertheless, I accept the challenge and will push on with World Cup Qualifying.

My first match is against Mexico. Crap.

Well, at least it’s not at Azteca; instead it’s at BMO Field in Toronto. So I should have a slight home-field advantage. Hopefully. There can’t be that many Mexico fans in Toronto, can there?

So, I’ve called up my first squad. Here it is:

My first squad

And I’ve decided that my best chance of achieving some points is to play somewhat defensively and with 5 midfielders (our deepest position). I’m hoping to draw Mexico in and hit them on the counter-attack. That may or may not work but it’s the best chance I got; I certainly can’t hang with them if I go all out attacking, which is my preferred FM tactic. So, my squad and tactics look like this:

Squad and tactics v. Mexico

I play in two days time (12 August 2009) so I’ll finally have some actual game feedback.

On another note, it’s been hell filling out the coaching staff. I had to re-hire for every position because I sacked everyone when I arrived. I hope the coaching improvements help out with the matchday performances.

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