‘Quantum leap’ for Canada?
plan and budget. He has presented his own blueprint and should learn in November what road map he will be given for 2018.
He looks forward to a year which he calls a “clean slate.”
“I can’t wait to see if all these initiatives that I have put forth, (that) they are given the OK for us to proceed. And then I can tell you Canada will just take a quantum leap if that happens.”
Seven months into the job, Zambrano is eager to put his stamp on things. He is not one for standing still.
“I think we could go faster. I feel like I could do more and should do more. I hope to have the resources to do that.”
He is grateful to the CSA for adding another warmup game before the Gold Cup. A game against Curacao was all that was originally planned.
Zambrano wanted more and a closed-door session against Nicaragua — four 30-minute periods over two days in Sunrise, Fla., was arranged.
“It was a wise decision by the CSA because it was in that game where a lot of the thoughts about how to approach the Gold Cup came together.”
Zambrano says he believes he has a “pretty good handle” now on the talent in the system.
“But I know there are out there many more that I haven’t seen yet. And I’m keen to look there.”
He believes Canadian soccer has to look outside the box for talent.
“I believe this is part of my charter as well — to make sure I have the mechanisms put in place to find those players. It’s not just about what happens in the established routes to participate and compete.
“That is great but there is another world out there of many, many, many players that I know are playing the game but that are perhaps not being looked at.”
Zambrano has already brought in players from Ontario’s League 1 to scrimmage with the national team. And for this camp, he included 21-year-old Caniggia Elva, a St. Luciaborn Calgary-raised forward who went to Europe at 18.
Canadian midfielder Alphonso Davies, left, plays the ball as French Guiana’s Rhudy Evens looks on during a Gold Cup Group A match in July.