Monday, April 07, 2008

Qualifying groups: Canada shafted?

As promised, a look at how the aggregate CONCACAF seedings break down by group:

Country Rk
Group 1
Guatemala 7
Trinidad & Tobago 10
Cuba 11
Average 7.5

Group 2
Mexico 1
Jamaica 8
Honduras 3
Canada 5
Average 4.25

Group 3
Costa Rica 4
Guyana 13
Panama 6
Haiti 7
Average 7.5

Of course, these are only the expected groups. Upsets are possible in the preliminary round, although it is the lower ranked sides (Cuba, T&T, Guyana, for example) that are more likely to be knocked off, further weakening the already weaker groups.

I can only bitch about this so much. When it comes right down to it, Canada needs to be able to beat all of the teams in its group (with the possible exception of Mexico) and whether that happens early on or in the Hex doesn't matter all that much. I'll keep doing this periodically, if only to satisfy my spreadsheet fetish, but it's becoming clear to me that the games on the field are what I find interesting.

In other news, while Canada's U23 squad failed to qualify for Beijing, the ladies are a step away. I don't devote much of my attention to women's soccer, but I'll be sure to tune in if they make it to the Olympics. A few members of the team are pretty easy on the eyes, which doesn't hurt one bit.

You can catch the match on the ever-awesomer CBC Sports online stream Wednesday night.

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