Teams: Toronto FC, Fiorentina, Barça
Women's U-20 World Cup
Once again, the CSA's pre-tournament hype proves to be wishful thinking. It seems every time a major international competition comes up, be it a FIFA or CONCACAF event, the Canadian Soccer establishment starts talking a good game and making wildly optimistic predictions about how well the team will do.
Most recently, we saw the 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign launched with predictions that we would actually qualify this time; in reality, we never even won a game in the group round.
Now we have the women's U-20 team, which went into the FIFA U-20 women's world cup in Chile with coach Ian Bridge saying (with a straight face) that they had "a very good chance of winning the gold medal". In actual fact, of course, the team crashed out in the group round, and never even made it to the quarter-finals.
This repeated raising of expectations and seeing them dashed has many consequences - not the least of which is the loss of credibility of the CSA. It also undermines fan support and morale among the players.