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GOLD CUP 

16/6/2007 - 15:23(EST)

Canada is on to the semifinals

Canada advanced to the Gold Cup semifinals for the first time since 2002 with a comprehensive 3-0 victory over Guatemala on Saturday afternoon at Gillette Stadium.

16/JUN/07 - Dwayne De Rosario opened the scoring in the 17th minute by tapping in a shot from Ali Gerba. Gerba found his way onto the score sheet in the 33rd minute after great buildup work in the offensive third, and added his second and his team’s in the 44th minute by deflecting a Julian De Guzman shot.

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Canada started the brighter of the two sides and nearly opened the scoring after 12 minutes. After Dwayne De Rosario was fouled out on the left wing, Canada midfielder Martin Nash swung a free kick into the far post. Andrew Hainault was first to it, but his effort towards the gaping net was deflected wide.

There was no respite for the flat-footed Guatemalan defense in the 17th minute as Canada claimed the lead. Paul Stalteri played a diagonal ball through the Guatemalan backline onto the run of Ali Gerba. Gerba slid his effort toward the far post, where the onrushing De Rosario tapped home.

The second goal nearly arrived six minutes later, as Canada took advantage of some miscommunication on the Guatemalan defensive line. Atiba Hutchinson’s effort from 14 yards was blocked, but the rebound fell to Julian De Guzman. His effort was only kept out by a diving save from Guatemalan goalkeeper Carlos Trigueno.

Canada’s second goal came in the 33rd minute through an intricate passing movement. The goal started with De Rosario on the left playing the ball inside to Hutchinson, who slotted a ball behind the defense to De Guzman. De Guzman played from the byline across the face of goal to the waiting Gerba, who had a simple finish to double the Canadian lead.

The Canadian lead was extended to three a minute before halftime. Ante Jazic found space down the left hand flank and played a pass back to De Guzman on the edge of the penalty area. De Guzman scuffed his shot towards goal, but the effort hit off the right heel of Gerba and deflected off the right post and past Trigueno into the net.

After the interval, De Rosario had an early chance to grab his second of the contest in the 50th minute. De Rosario was played through on goal by Gerba, but he could only manage a tame shot that failed to trouble Trigueno.

Guatemala had a penalty appeal turned away in the 62nd minute as Pat Onstad and substitute Mario Rodriguez collided inside the Canadian penalty area, but the contact was dismissed by referee Courtney Campbell.

It was a matter of both teams playing out time, as Guatemala could not find a way to penetrate the Canadian defense and Canada was not pressing forward because of its advantage.

There was one last chance for De Rosario in the 89th minute. De Rosario earned a free kick on the edge of the Guatemalan penalty area after shaking free from Medina. De Rosario curled the resulting free kick around the wall, but Trigueno dove and tipped the ball around the box.

Miller Lite Player of the Match: Ali Gerba (Canada)

CANADA HEAD COACH STEPHEN HART

On today’s game:
“We felt going into the game that our game was to not get counterattacked upon and deny service to Ruiz. I thought my backline had an excellent game.”

“The victory was nice. I thought in the first half, we were balanced. We attacked well and we defended well. It was a game of two halves. In the second half, we had to defend.”

On Guatemala’s performance:
“I was very surprised. I thought they would play similar to the way they played against the United States. We were fortunate to get a goal early. That puts pressure on the opponent. We had to hold the lead long enough to put pressure on them and we did that.”

CANADA FORWARD AND MILLER LITE MAN OF THE MATCH ALI GERBA

On today's game:
“It is very easy to score when you play around quality players. It makes your job easy.”

GUATEMALA HEAD COACH HERNAN DARIO GOMEZ

On today's game:
“Canada was superior in all points of the game. They were in better condition than us. The three or four times they got to our goal, they were able to finish.”

“After losing 3-0, it’s hard to say anything to our fans. You’re blind after that.”

On how the Gold Cup works to integrate players for World Cup Qualifying:

“It’s hard to incorporate people into the team. We have to work from the group up to develop players. We have to prepare in every possible way, including physically.”

“The country is anxious for immediate results. I’m not scared of the pressure.”

CANADA 3- GUATEMALA 0
CAN: 14 – Dwayne De Rosario (10 - Ali Gerba), 17’

CAN: 10 - Ali Gerba (6 – Julian DeGuzman), 33’

CAN: 10 – Ali Gerba (6 – Julian DeGuzman), 44’

CAN: 22 – Pat Onstad (GK), 3 – Ante Jazic, 5 – Andrew Hainault, 6 – Julian DeGuzman, 7 – Paul Stalteri © , 10 – Ali Gerba (17 – Iain Hune, 67’), 11 – Richard Hatsings, 13 – Atiba Hitchinson (20 – Chris Pozniak, 90’), 14 – Dwayne De Rosario (18 – Issey Kakajima-Farran, 89’), 15 – Patrick Bernier, 16 – Martin Nash

DNP / No jugaron: 23 – Robert Giacomi (GK), 2 – Adam Braz, 8 – Kevin Harmse, , 19- Antonio Ribeiro,

TD: Stephen Hart

GUA: 1 – Ricardo Tigueno (GK), 3 – Pablo Meglar, 5 – Henry Medina, 6 – Gustavo Cabrera ©, 7 – Claudio Albizuris (13 – Nestor Martinez, 54’), 8 – Jose Contreras, 11 – Marvin Avila (12 – Carlos Figueroa, 75’), 14 – Rigoberto Gomez, 15 – Luis Swisher (19 – Mario Rodriguez, 27’), 18 – Carlos Quinones, 20 – Carlos Ruiz

DNP / No jugaron: 25 – Paulo Cesar Motta (GK), 4 – Yony Flores, 17 – Dwight Pezzarossi, 23 – Hernan Sandoval

TD: Hernan Dario Gomez

Booked /Amonestado:

GUA: 3 – Palbo Melgar, 51’

CAN: 16 – Martin Nash, 61’

GUA: 20 – Carlos Ruiz, 72’

GUA: 5 – Henry Mediona, 88’

Terra/CONCACAF