• Saturday Aug 20, 2016

    Moscato, Canada growing together at CU15G

    Canada head coach Carmelina Moscato (pictured) and her squad will face the USA in CONCACAF U-15 Girls' Championship final on August 21, 2016, in Orlando, Florida.

     ORLANDO, Florida – Canada’s defensive record at the 2016 CONCACAF U-15 Girls’ Championship was unblemished, that was until Friday’s semifinal against a Mexico side that was clearly undaunted by stat sheets.

    Anette Vazquez gave the Tricolor a 1-0 lead in just the fifth minute with her third goal of the competition.

    The Canadians weren’t stunned by that development or the fact that their clean-sheet run was snapped. They just went back to work as the in-form Jordyn Huitema equalized two minutes later and then made it 3-1 in the 21st minute, following Jayde Riviere’s go-ahead goal. 

    “We were hoping that would be the reaction,” Canada head coach Carmelina Moscato told CONCACAF.com. “We had expected that (reaction) and the girls really cemented that in.

    “The first adversity, the first goal we gave up all tournament. The reaction was fantastic. You couldn’t have asked for anything more.”

    Strengthened by the inclusion of players that competed at the CONCACAF Under-17 Women’s Championship earlier this year – including Huitema and Riviere – the young U15 squad is already looking much like its older colleagues.

    “It’s the first time that we’ve all been together,” said Moscato, who played in two FIFA Women’s World Cups and was a silver medalist at the 2012 Olympic Games for Canada. “There’s about five new staff. The cohesion, the quality of soccer that we’ve been playing, the processes have improved. We always say give it one more percent every day and these girls have absolutely done that for the program.

    “The character of the team is very high. We have a lot of warriors on the team. We have a lot of people who are proud to play for Canada and leave their heart and soul, and blood sweat and tears on the pitch.”

    The CU15G final will pit defending champion Canada against its neighbor to the south, the United States. Both teams enter into the decider with perfect 6-0-0 records and have combined to score a remarkable 69 goals.

    Moscato is, of course, looking forward to the challenge that the Americans will undoubtedly pose, but knows the encounter is just part of a much larger picture.

    “We’re going to do our due diligence, dissect their play and do what we do,” the 32-year-old noted. “At the end of the day, though, we’re going to keep it simple for the girls and make sure they are light, bright and clear heading into that game.

    “It’s all process, it has to be at this age. I think process leads to outcomes. We’re really proud of them and what they’ll be able to do against a strong U.S. We couldn’t ask for more. It’s a great for the U15s and eventually the U17s.” 

    As for her first foray into the international game as a head coach, Moscato couldn’t be happier.

    “I think that I’m living in a dream,” she finished. “I don’t think many people get this kind of opportunity and I’m just looking to earn it every day.”

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