Posted on September 12, 2012
PANAMA CITY, Panama — Needless to say, Canada coach Stephen Hart was not very happy about his team losing to Panama in a CONCACAF Group C World Cup qualifying match on Tuesday.
What made it worse was that his team played poorly. Hart was not accepting any excuses from any of his players.
“We were lethargic right from the kickoff,” Hart said. “Then we lost Dwayne [De Rosario] and had to make adjustments. We were second best in everything.”
De Rosario, Canada’s all-time leading goal-scorer, left the game early on with a MCL knee injury that could sideline the D.C. United standout fromm 10 days to four to five weeks. He will undergo an MRI on Thursday.
“It was tough for us from the start,” Canada midfielder Atiba Hutchinson said. “We didn’t really find ourselves in the game and things just didn’t click for us.”
The Canadians (2-1-1, seven points) find themselves in a must-win situation in their final two matches — home vs. Cuba on Oct. 12 and at Honduras on Oct. 16.
Panama (3-1-0, nine) leads the group and the Hondurans (2-1-1, four) are next, ahead of Canada by goal differential. Cuba is last with a 0-4-0 record, having been eliminated in a 1-0 defeat in Honduras.
“It’s a crucial game,” Hart said of the Cuba encounter. “We have to get three points. We still have two games left, there is a lot to play for.”
Added Hutchinson: “We have to keep our heads up, we still have two important games to play. Hopefully we can bounce back from here.”
Photo: Canada coach Stephen Hart: “We were lethargic right from the kickoff. Keith Furman/First Row Photos
Categories: Canada, North America, Panama, World Cup Qualifying
Tags: Atiba Hutchinson, D.C. United, Dwayne De Rosario, Major League Soccer, Stephen Hart, World Cup qualifying