by Andrew Doulton - Ongoing
The Kids of North America
As part of the FANFORMATION philosophy we are always searching the World of Football to find the finest talents. For this report I have built a team of 11 young players from North America, being represented from Canada, Mexico and the USA. You will notice that there is more players from the USA in this team, which is down to the fact that this was position based 11.
If you were to look at the history of Canada on the International scene, they have only manage to ever qualify for one World Cup and they went on to loose all three group games. That story does not really show the complete picture for Canada as they won the CONCACAF Gold Cup in 1985 and 2000. They also have an Olympic Gold medal from 1904.
At youth level it has also been a mixed success with two CONCACAF titles in 1986 and 1996. There has also been a little more success at the youth world cups where Canada have reached 8 tournaments, once managing to reach the quarterfinals.
When it comes to the players there has always been a selection of Canadian players scattered throughout the European Leagues but there has yet to be a Golden Generation of players. The two that spring to mind are De Guzman and Stalteri who both played top flight.
So what is changing in Canadian Football? Well the advances in the quality of the MLS must be very beneficial in the long run, as now the Canadian young players are playing at a better level domestically. I have called out two Canadian players in my North American team. The first is Samuel Piette who made his senior debut for Dusseldorf before moving on to Deportivo, he has currently on Loan in Ferrol. The other player I have called out for Canada is Cyle Larin who currently plays for Orlando City in the MLS where he has quite an impressive scoring record.
When you look at the history of Mexican Football they have had some success qualifying for 15 World cups, reaching the Quarter Finals on two occasions. They have also won the Confederations Cup once, CONCACAF Gold Cup 10 times and they are currently the Champions. As well as being the CONCACAF Champions they are also the current Olympic Champions following victory at London 2012.
At U20s level Mexico have qualified for 13 world cups with their best performance being as finalist in China 1977. They have also one an impressive 13 U20 CONCACAF titles.
As I was writing this I started to have flash backs players such as Blanco and Campos at previous world cups. I feel that the current Mexico team is missing the personalities of old but I am sure it will not be long before the next batch comes through.
So the future of Mexican football will continue to produce decent players. For me the Hirving Lozano was the 1st name on the team sheet. He currently plays for Pachuca and he is really special talent that could go on to achieve very good things. The other Players I have selected are Jose Javier Abella of America, who has the potential to be a top right back. The final Mexican I have selected Raúl Gudiño who is a young goalkeeper currently playing for Porto B. He is a fantastic young keeper who is already at a top club, I can really see this young keeper being in goal for Mexico in the Future.
Following a baron spell that started 1954 The USA did not qualify for 9 World Cups. Following this spell they qualified for the World Cup in 1990 and have not looked back since qualifying for the last 7 finishing in the quarterfinals in 2002. The USA have had some success though by winning 5 COCACAF Gold Cups with their last win in 2013.
At youth Level there has not been much success with USA not winning any CONCACAF tournaments or youth World Cups. This is a stat that has surprise me because there seems to be success at the senior level and there always seems to be young tallents being mentioned.
As for American players as I was growing up, I have always thought America produced a good quality of Goal Keepers. For example Kacey Keller, Brad Friedel and currently Tim Howard, all of these were good during their time in English Football. There have also been some good outfield players that have played in Europe, and a good example is Clint Dempsey who has constantly performed during his years in England.
What next for the USA team? Well I think the future will be very bright. This is largely down to the current success of the MLS. Ever since Beckham moved to the MLS there has been a constant stream of players moving to the league, which in my opinion will massively increase the quality as the profile rises. Also I believe attitude has changed towards Soccer, which always used to be in the shadows of other American Sports. I ended up picking six players from the USA that I can see going on to good things in their careers. The most well know of these is obviously Julian Green who is a fantastic talent and is currently having a good season while on loan at Hamburger SV. The other more well know on this list is the young Arsenal player who is currently on loan at Rangers. I have also chosen two other players based in Europe for my 11, Rubio Rubin of Utrecht and Danny Barbir of West Brom. The final two Americans that I chose were Sam Adekugbe of Vancouver who has the potential to be a strong left back and finally Matt Miazga who is currently a solid player at the heart of the New York Red Bulls Defence.
After reviewing the three big countries of North America I believe that the USA will be the dominant team in the future. They have a good selection of players coming through and a good domestic national league that seems to be well financed. However this will not be an instant success though as you can see above Mexico are both CONCACAF and Olympic Champions so will be at the top for a little while yet.
I will be providing a detailed of each of these players over the next few days. Breaking down there current statistics and calling out he qualities that each of them have.