2026 FIFA World Cup: Can Canada Kick On After Herdman?

The Canadian national soccer team reached the FIFA World Cup in 2022. With the next one taking place on Canadian, Mexican, and United States soil, the Maple Leafs have automatically qualified. John Herdman may have moved on, but the soccer side is in a good place right now. How far can Canada go in 2026?

Huge Tournament in 2026

We may be two years away from the event, but excitement is already building for the 2026 World Cup in Canada, Mexico, and the United States. Canada has never hosted a men’s World Cup before, and the locals will be out in force supporting the nation. The Reds are one of the underdogs, with sportsbooks offering 99/1 for Canada to lift the trophy. The World Cup draws crowds like nothing else, and betting will be huge when the competition is live. Bitcoin sports betting is growing in popularity, and many bettors will be using the cryptocurrency when the World Cup rolls around in 2026.

Canada will play a big part in the tournament, with matches being played in Vancouver and Toronto. BC Place, which has a capacity of over 54,000, will be used for two of Canada’s group matches. The 30,000-seater BMO Field in Toronto will also see group action. Can the Canadians make home advantage count and book their place in the knockout phase of the famous soccer competition?

Looking Back at Qatar

Canada was involved in the last World Cup, which took place in Qatar in 2022. It was a historic sporting moment for the Maple Leafs, as they reached only their second-ever World Cup. The nation’s only previous appearance in the finals came in Mexico in 1986.

Having qualified for the 2022 version, Canada was drawn into a tough group with the likes of Croatia, Belgium, and Morocco. The Croatians and Belgians were tipped to go far, but the Moroccans won the group and reached the semi-finals.

Herdman’s side finished with zero points, but theyΒ did not disgrace themselves in Qatar. They fell to a narrow 1-0 defeat to Belgium in Al Rayyan in game one before crashing to a 4-1 loss to Croatia on matchday two. The Reds finished with no points after a 2-1 reverse to Morocco in Doha in the final Group F fixture.

Can Canada Cause an Upset in 2026?

Canada has reached two World Cups but has yet to pick up a single point. The Maple Leafs have played six and lost six. However, despite finishing bottom of the pile in Group F in Qatar, the Canadian players certainly held their own. They were narrowly beaten by Belgium and Morocco and took an early lead against Croatia.

Backed by thousands of home fans, Canada will be looking to cause a few upsets in Vancouver and Toronto. The national team was on the rise under Englishman Herdman, and the players would have learned a lot from the tournament in Qatar. Winning the World Cup is a few steps too far, but can Canada reach the knockout phase of the 2026 World Cup?