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Canada prepare to make history against Belgium in World Cup opener

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Canada are set to kick off their first World Cup campaign since 1986 on Wednesday, facing Belgium at the Ahmad bin Ali Stadium. 

The North American side qualified for the tournament after concluding the Concacaf cycle in first place with 28 points from 14 games, edging out Mexico and the United States. Now, as Canada prepares for their first World Cup match in 36 years, head coach John Herdman insists the team will seize every opportunity. 

“That’s the opportunity we have here,” Herdman said before their Group F opener. “Coming into a game like this, we don’t have a great amount to lose, just a genuine opportunity to make it our cup final.”

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Beyond the underdog label, the CanMNT players are focused on qualifying for the round-of-16. But it won’t be an easy journey, as Group F boasts Belgium, Croatia, and Morocco. 

“We’re beyond excited that we made it to the world’s biggest stage, but I just want to be clear that we’re not here just to enjoy or participate. We’re here to get a job done,” said veteran defender Steven Vitoria. 

“You know, we believe within our group. So I think, with the quality that we have and the brotherhood that we have, we can go as far as we want to go,” added midfielder Jonathan Osorio. 

Canada failed to advance beyond the group stage in 1986, losing all three games to sit in fourth place behind the Soviet Union, France, and Hungary. But this current CanMNT side are determined to make history and are equipped with the talent to do so.

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“We believe in what we can do as a team. We’ve played against a lot of good squads, good players and we trust in ourselves. We trust in each and every one on the team,” concluded 39-year-old Atiba Hutchinson.



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England vs Senegal: Confirmed lineups

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England vs Senegal: Confirmed lineups

On Sunday, England and Senegal, their opponents in the last-16 of the World Cup, square off at Al Bayt Stadium in a battle for a spot in the quarterfinals.

The Three Lions take on the Lions of Teranga, who advanced to the knockout stages thanks to a crucial intervention from their captain, in a first-ever meeting after Gareth Southgate’s team defeated Wales to win Group B.

Line-up

England XI: Pickford; Walker, Stones, Maguire, Shaw; Rice, Henderson, Bellingham; Saka, Foden, Kane.  

Senegal XI: E. Mendy; Sabaly, Koulibaly, Diallo, Jakobs; Ciss, N. Mendy; Diatta, Ndiaye, Sarr; Dia. 

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USMNT players apologize for World Cup elimination

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US men’s national team players took to social media to apologize to fans following their elimination from the 2022 World Cup.  

After failing to qualify for the 2018 edition of the tournament, the American side entered Qatar with high hopes. The team kicked off with draws against England and Wales, before triumphing 1-0 over Iran to make the knockout round as second place of Group B. 

Gregg Berhalter’s side was forced to face the Netherlands on Saturday at Khalifa International Stadium for the highly anticipated match up. Despite an energetic start to the game, the USMNT ultimately lost 3-1, with goals from Memphis Depay, Daley Blind and Denzel Dumfries proving to be the difference between the two sides.

The Americans will now look forward to the 2026 World Cup where they will serve as hosts alongside Mexico and Canada. 

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France vs Poland: Confirmed lineups

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France vs Poland: Confirmed lineups

In Sunday’s last-16 matchup at the Al-Thumama Stadium, Poland and France, the current champions, prepare for battle after both teams lost in their World Cup 2022 group stage campaigns.

Les Bleus completed first in Gathering D to endure to the knockout rounds, while Czeslaw Michniewicz’s men set up a bind with the holders subsequent to putting second in Gathering C.

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