The biggest display of Canadian nationalism to take place in Quebec since 1995 will hit the streets of east Montreal tomorrow. About 1,000 Voyageurs will meet at Place du Canada—the site of the 1995 Unity Rally—at 6:15 p.m. From there they will march along Peel street, turn right on Ste. Catherine and into to the McGill metro station. The group will ride the train to the Pie IX stop before marching together through the Olympic Park to Stade Saputo.
The reason? Why soccer, of course. Canada takes on Honduras in the second match day of CONCACAF World Cup round 3 qualifying. The march will be slightly smaller than the one that took place in Toronto prior to the Aug 20 game with Jamaica, but is impressive none-the-less. It’s expected that 1-2,000 hardcore Canadian fans will travel to the game.
One reason the numbers will be smaller is because the Montreal organizing group, like other Canadian groups in the past, decided to pander to Honduran support in the early days of the ticket sales. As a result there could be about 20 per cent Honduran support in the stadium.
Still, the days of Canada playing road games at home appear to (thankfully) be over. Finally, we seem to be showing some pride in the home team.
They will need to be in full voice because the Honduran game will not be easy. Honduras opened up qualifying with a close 2-1 loss to Mexico in Mexico. Canada, of course, drew with Jamaica. Although by no means out matched—Canada and Honduras are pretty much 3a and 3b in any objective ranking of CONCACAF teams—World Cup qualifying is tricky business. Having already dropped two points at home the Canadians can’t afford to lose, or draw, this one.
Although no one will be prepared to abandon hope if Canada comes out with a draw (the standings would likely be Mexico 6, Canada 2, Jamaica 1, Honduras 1, if that were to happen) it wouldn’t be pretty. With a loss…it’s pretty much over.
So, yeah it’s a big game.
Some images of the last march from the infamous Go tunnel prior to the Jamaica game:
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