Canada names inexperienced roster for Denmark, USA friendlies

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Canada names inexperienced roster for Denmark, USA friendlies
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Canada names inexperienced roster for Denmark, USA friendlies

The future is now.

That is the prevailing sentiment behind Canada's latest roster, which sees numerous young players make the step up to the full international level.

Preparing for a pair of friendlies at the end of the month, interim head coach Colin Miller assembled the youngest Canada squad in nearly seven years, as the program casts an eye past the failed Brazil 2014 campaign.

“One of our key objectives for this camp is to look towards the future and give some of our young players a chance,” Miller said. “It is important for us to take a step forward during the camp and over the course of the next two matches.

"We expect the young players to come in very hungry and looking to show well for the future of the men’s national team.”

Of the 22 players set to participate in a short training camp before games against Denmark in Tucson, AZ, (Jan. 26) and the United States in Houston (Jan. 29), ten have never been called into the full national team. Most have prior experience playing for Canada at the youth level, with eight players having participated in last year's Olympic qualification tournament.

A ninth player from that tourney, 18-year-old Vancouver Whitecaps midfielder Bryce Alderson, confirmed to Goal.com that was he called in but had to pull out of the training camp due to injury.

Despite the youth movement, Miller has also summoned a few veterans, almost all of them from Major League Soccer as the matches do not fall on FIFA international match days.

D.C. United star Dwayne De Rosario headlines the list of vets called in, with the 34-year-old joined by goalkeeper Lars Hirschfeld, defender Dejan Jaković, midfielders Nik Ledgerwood and Terry Dunfield, and striker Tosaint Rickets as players who have represented Canada in the recent World Cup qualifying campaign.

FULL CANADA ROSTER

GOALKEEPERS (3): Lars Hirschfeld (Vålerenga/NOR), Roberto Stillo (Genoa/ITA), Simon Thomas (Unattached)

DEFENDERS (6): Ashtone Morgan (Toronto FC/CAN), Nana Attakora (FC Haka/FIN), Dejan Jaković (D.C. United/USA), Doneil Henry (Toronto FC/CAN), Mason Trafford (IFK Mariehamn/FIN), Andrés Fresenga (Racing Club de Montevideo/URU)

MIDFIELDERS (9): Nik Ledgerwood (Hammarby/SWE), Philippe Davies (Richmond Kickers/USA), Terry Dunfield (Toronto FC/CAN), Kyle Bekker (Toronto FC/CAN), Russell Teibert (Vancouver Whitecaps/CAN), Jonathan Beaulieu-Bourgault (Unattached), Dwayne De Rosario (D.C. United/USA), Matt Stinson (Toronto FC/CAN), Emmanuel Gomez (Club Atletico Griffa/ARG)

FORWARDS (4): Evan James (Unattached), Tosaint Ricketts (Sandnes Ulf/NOR), Frank Jonke (FF Jaro/FIN), Kyle Porter (FC Edmonton/CAN)

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