Canada Opens With Draw

Date Published: 
The Leader-Post

PORT AU SPAIN (CP) The Canadian soccer team, preparing for its World Cup qualifying tournament in Mexico next month, opened its South American exhibition tour Friday and battled to a 0-0 draw against a South Trinidad squad.

John McMahon, manager of the Canadian team, said coach Eckard Krautzun "used 17 players and all showed exceptionally well."

McMahon said the South Trinidad team included five national players from that country, five former national players and "two or three younger players who are being developed for the national team."

"Our situation is looking good," McMahon said. "The boys are really up for the games. In addition to this, our injury situation is minor."

He said Robert Iarusci, who played this season for the New York Cosmos of the North American Soccer League, "has a minor injury," while West McLeod, with the NASL Tampa Bay Rowdies this year, has a sore knee.

The team, which includes 20 of the top 20 players in Canada, continues its exhibition series in Trinidad on Sunday with a game against the Trinidad national team.

In the October qualifying round, Canada and Mexico have been installed as the early favorites of the six countries competing for a berth in the 1978 World Cup finals in Argentina.