Reviews and recommendations are unbiased and products are independently selected. Postmedia may earn an affiliate commission from purchases made through links on this page.
The Canadian men’s soccer team is halfway to the Octagon.
The Reds beat Haiti 1-0 away in the first leg of their 2022 World Cup qualifying matchup on Saturday, with Cyle Larin scoring a 14th minute goal to provide the difference on the day at Stade Sylvio Cator in Port-au-Prince.
The two teams play again Tuesday in Chicago, with a spot in the Octagon — the eight-team group play that will send the top three teams to the World Cup — on the line.
Larin turned in a perfectly weighted cross from Jonathan Osario on the right-hand side 14 minutes in to give Canada the lead, then nearly extended it on a partial breakaway a few minutes later, but Haiti keeper Johny Placide stoned him.
Jonathan David had a full breakaway late in the second half, but Placide again stood tall to keep the score 1-0.
Canadian soccer fans started having PTSD as Haiti began to press, thinking back to the 2019 Gold Cup quarterfinal where Canada coughed up a two-goal halftime lead to Haiti and lost 3-2.
Canada hasn’t been to the Octagon since 1997, coming close twice — in 2016, when their 1-0 lead against Honduras turned into a 2-1 loss, and having a free kick at the very end of stoppage time, but Canadian keeper Milan Borjan swallowed up the attempted cross to seal the result.