No Copa for Canada: CSA By Steven Sandor Posted on April 5, 2011 2 0 593 Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Despite reports from AP this morning suggesting Canada, Costa Rica and Spain could replace Japan as one of the guest teams in this summer’s (or, in South America, winter) Copa America, the Canadian Soccer Association confirms no one from CONMEBOL has reached out to it. Japan, as expected, withdrew from one of the guest slots at Copa America, as the country struggles to recover from the earthquake and resulting tsunami. That means a slot is open. CONMEBOL regularly invites associations outside of South America to compete in the Copa America as guest clubs. Reports indicated that an invitation went to Spain, but that Canada and Costa Rica were also interested. Canadian Soccer Association Richard Scott spokesman said CONMEBOL has not reached out to the CSA. “We have not been invited,” said Scott. Now, logistics for both Canada and Costa Rica would be difficult. Mexico is another guest team at the Copa, but it plans to send a “B” squad to South America, as the “A” team goes for the Gold Cup. The Gold Cup goes June 5-25. Copa America starts July 1. For Canada, which will likely have a handful of MLS players in key positions, going to the Gold Cup and holding onto players for Copa America would be a tough sell to GMs throughout the league. Canada has been able to name a squad mainly made up of European-based players for games over in Europe, but could they be together for an extended period in South America? How much pressure would be put on those players by their clubs to not go to a tournament in which Canada would be a “guest” team? And, if national coach Stephen Hart has a hard enough time putting together a roster for the Gold Cup, how could he find enough players to be competitive against South American sides? Even U.S. coach Bob Bradley said his side doesn’t have the depth to play in both tournaments. If the U.S. doesn’t, how would Canada?