OLIVA, Spain – Since making his Canadian national team debut in 1998, Dwayne De Rosario has seen his share of coaches come and go.
In fact, with new coach Benito Floro set to make his debut as boss when Canada take on Mauritania here on Sunday (11:30 am ET), De Rosario will be playing under his seventh coach as a member of the national team.
And so far, De Rosario likes what he sees.
“I really like his approach for the first camp,” the D.C. United star told reporters on Saturday. “It’s kind of like a Canadian national team preseason. He’s really getting his message across the way he wants us to play, the way he wants us to attack and defend which is vital for the development of our national team moving forward. It’s very important that we’re on the same page.”
With such a big group in camp – more than 30 players are on board, including nine from MLS clubs – De Rosario can see Floro’s logic in getting every player to know their role, because not every player will be in every national team camp going forward.
But it’s important for the entire pool to be familiar with how their new coach wants to run the show.
“The earlier we can all understand the way he wants us to play and our movements and defending and offensively, the clearer the picture will be going forward,” De Rosario said.
A casualty of Canada’s youth movement at this summer’s Gold Cup, De Rosario is back in his first national team camp since January, when he played in two games under interim head coach Colin Miller.
“This is the first camp I’ve been to where we’ve had a mixture of senior players and a mixture of young kids that is going to be the future national team players,” said De Rosario, who expects to earn his 75th cap Sunday. “I know Mr. Floro is very straight to the point that he wants everyone on the same page, from the young kids coming up to the oldest guys on the team.”