Canada falls narrowly to Mauritania in Spain

Action from an international friendly between Canada (red) and Mauritania on September 10, 2013, at Oliva, Spain. (Photo: Gavin Day)


OLIVA, Spain – Canada concluded its first camp under new head coach Benito Floro on Tuesday with a 1-0 loss to Mauritania at the Oliva Nova Beach and Golf Resort.  It was the second meeting between them in three days, following Sunday’s goalless draw.


Despite maintaining possession for large portions of the encounter, the Canadians lost the services of Marcel de Jong, who was sent off late in first half for two yellow cards.


Only eight minutes after the break, Mauritania netted the game’s only goal through Adama Ba.


The 20-year-old midfielder, who plays for Bastia in France, was sent in alone against Canadian goalkeeper Milan Borjan and he hit the back of the net with a low shot.


Up to that point, Canada had the better of the scoring chances.


In the 33rd minute, defender Adam Straith took a quick free kick from his own half that was controlled by Tosaint Ricketts.  The forward played the ball to Issey Nakajima-Farran, whose goal-bound shot was blocked.


Seconds later, Canada won a free kick, but defender David Edgar’s low attempt from 20-yards out was saved.


Undaunted and down a man, the Canadians kept pushing forward. In the 63rd minute, Mauritania’s Oumar N’Diaye was issued a second caution for a hard tackle on Nakajima-Farran, leaving both sides with 10 players.


Canada, which has not scored in six straight outings, spent nearly the remainder of the game in the Africans’ side of the field.  Nevertheless, it couldn’t find the equalizer.


Next up for Canada is an October 16 friendly against Australia in London.