There’s no blaming Cyle Larin for being confident. The Orlando City SC forward just set an MLS rookie record with 17 goals and has become a regular with the Canadian senior national team.
Now that he’s shifting gears to the Canucks’ upcoming World Cup qualifiers, that confidence hasn’t wavered.
In an interview with Honduran sports daily Diez, Larin proclaimed that Canada are the second best team to Mexico in their CONCACAF qualifying group that also includes Honduras and El Salvador. Canada will take on Honduras on Nov. 13 and then El Salvador on Nov. 17.
“We have a good chance [to qualify from the group] as much as our other rivals in the group,” he said. “We all want to advance to the next round. We have many soccer players who play in MLS and this in a way is an advantage and we can have a greater chance to advance.”
Canada advanced to the current semifinal round of qualifying with a 4-1 aggregate victory in a two-leg series against Belize in September, with Larin starting both matches. Since debuting for Canada last year, Larin has three goals and been capped 12 times.
“I think we’ve improved a lot and now we have a different style of play,” Larin said. “We know what we need to do."
Next week’s matchup vs. Honduras is a chance for redemption for Canada after they fell 8-1 in World Cup qualifying that ended the Canucks’ hopes for Brazil 2014.
“I think it’s going to be a great game, we will be playing at home and I think we have the right team and we’re going to win the game,” Larin said. “We’ve played pretty well in the friendlies that we’ve had, and I’m sure we’re going to do well.”
It will also be a chance for Larin to go up against Orlando teammate and fellow rookie Bryan Rochez, who is a Honduran national teamer.
“I spoke a bit with him about the game, and we’ve joked that I’m going to win the game,” Larin said. “I tell him I’m going to score and we’re going to win."