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The Canadian men’s national team slid past Cuba 1-0 on Tuesday in their second CONCACAF Nations League match in four days.
Coach John Herdman made five changes from Canada’s 6-0 win over the Cubans on Saturday: Sam Adekugbe and Steven Vitoria on the left side of defence, Will Johnson and David Wotherspoon in midfield, and forward Cyle Larin.
It was a different look to the group, especially up top, with Larin operating as a bulky back-to-goal centre forward. Wotherspoon offered something different in an advanced midfield option.
The Cubans were more compact than the previous fixture, as Canada went into halftime up 1-0. Doniel Henry was sent off in the 55th minute, but Canada held off the Cubans by keeping possession and seeing out the win.
Here’s how the Canadian players rated Tuesday night:
Milan Borjan (7/10) — Solid-yet-quiet night for the goalkeeper. Dealt with the few Cuban opportunities well.
Sam Adekugbe (6/10) — Sneaky on the overlap, Adekugbe looked good in breaking forward a handful of times, especially as the fullbacks pushed up in the second half with Canada’s possession mounting.
Steven Vitoria (7/10) — The 31-year-old defender was strong for the full 90 minutes, cycling possession and was rarely tested.
Doneil Henry (4/10) — Sent off in the 54th minute with a second yellow, Henry capped off a physical night of defending early.
Richie Laryea (6/10) — Laryea’s side came under pressure on the right alongside Jonathan David, but they were largely able to snuff out Cuba’s chances.
Will Johnson (8/10) — Good night at the pivot position and, later, right fullback. Great work rate, clutch tackles and some nice long distribution to the wings. Vintage Canadian performance.
Mark-Anthony Kaye (7/10) — A step below his performance from Saturday, the shuttling midfielder conceded possession too often in the first half before a more comfortable second-half outing. The slow pitch certainly didn’t help matters.
David Wotherspoon (5/10) — Playing quite advanced, Wotherspoon was unable to create much out of the midfield in just his second appearance for Canada.
Jonathan David (7/10) — Returned to a right wing role, and first-half defensive lapses did lead to a half-chance or two. Looked more dangerous in the final half-hour, returning to the middle.
Alphonso Davies (8/10) — Bayern’s wide-man got in amongst the goals right away after failing to convert Saturday; left-footed, laces-through, straight past the Cuban goalkeeper. Was part of a break-neck first half when he held the ball up well. Good service on the left wing, too.
Cyle Larin (6/10) — Didn’t look confident as a centre forward, mostly as David and Davies stayed wide of a compact Cuba defence, unable to create good open play flick-on opposites. Was taken out of the match after 60 minutes,
Jonathan Osorio (6/10) — Coming off off the bench, after Henry was sent off, he looked adequate, but was unable to find a way through Cuba’s midfield.
Derek Cornelius (7/10) — The 21-year-old settled the defensive group, slotting in alongside fellow left-footer Vitoria.
Liam Millar (6/10) — A second short cameo in as many games for Canada. A decent cross was all of note.