“You have to do whatever it takes to win”

Canada qualified for Qatar 2022 as the first of the Concacaf octagonal and surprised everyone, even The United States and Mexico, the two teams used to leading in Central and North America but this time they were overshadowed by the performance and effectiveness of the Canadians.

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The truth is that the team led by John Herdman had several reasons for taking over the Qualifiers: a spectacular litter of footballers, led by Alphonso Davies, who perfectly interpreted the coach’s idea. After reaching the semi-finals at the Gold Cup, it reflected the good moment in the most important matches to be in a World Cup after 36 years.

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But in addition to good football and a revolutionary proposal, Canada did not leave any detail to chance. Thereforein several games of the octagonal final, they chose venues where the cold is one more rival for the visiting team. In a territory where temperatures are low almost all year round, there are places where they are felt even more.

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Of course, the locals are more than used to it, but for someone from outside the situation becomes almost unlivable. Even more so if it is about many teams from Central America, accustomed to Caribbean climates, beach, sun, heat and salsa…

Cavallini celebrates with the 9. AP

Cavallini celebrates with the 9. AP

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Lucas Cavallini, a naturalized Uruguayan who plays for Canada, recounted the details of how this idea came about, which became a strategy in itself: “These are things that… You have to do whatever it takes to win”. Born in the Río de La Plata, he has the bilardismo inoculated deep inside.

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In dialogue with ESPN, he particularly recalled the duel with Mexico, when the federation chose to host at Commonwealth Stadium, located in the city of Edmonton. This region is located more to the center of the total territory of Canada, but most of the habitable land by temperatures is to the south, on the border with the United States.

Against Jamaica it was also cold: five degrees below zero.  AFP

Against Jamaica it was also cold: five degrees below zero. AFP

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This city is located a few kilometers further north, in one of the last urban agglomerations in the country: then, the population density begins to decrease considerably because the weather does not help.

Against Mexico, the venue was key.  AP

Against Mexico, the venue was key. AP

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The day of the duel against Mexico, the temperature was 11 degrees below zero and for the Aztecs this was not comfortable at all. Away from the beaches and the warmth of Cancun, the players tried to acclimatize but were almost never able to do so: they fell 2-1 in a win that put Canada on track.

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“You don’t know what the game against Mexico was like. During the anthem, Chucky Lozano was frozen shaking, they were cold shit. We watched him from the bench and we laughed, sentenced the footballer. And then he added: “We are already winning 1-0″.

Tata Martino, sheltered.  AP

Tata Martino, sheltered. AP

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