On Tuesday night, Commonwealth Stadium will welcome tens of thousands of football fans, hoping for a sea of red in the glaring winter weather.
On Monday afternoon, a major prairie storm rolled in from the west, dumping snow across parts of Alberta, including Edmonton, bringing strong winds.
Dan St. Pierre, director of strategic communications and partnerships with Explore Edmonton, said: “I think this is almost a quintessential Edmonton.
“This is November in Edmonton… We’re holding out hope, fingers crossed that we’ll make it through.
St. “But to be honest, I think this adds to its power,” says Pierre. “I think this is really going to make it a more interesting night because of the unusual circumstances.”
He said more than 50,000 tickets were sold for Tuesday’s match.
“Edmonton showed up. Rain, snow, sun, it doesn’t matter… Edmontonians are proud to be in any weather. Recall the Heritage Classic back in 2003. I was on the top deck with my old man in a snowsuit. Edmonton appeared. ”
Canada (3-0-4) is preparing to face Mexico in a match that could decide who will go top in the CONCACAF World Cup Qualifiers.
Canada is currently third, with Mexico (4-1-2) at the top with the United States.
The top three teams qualify for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, while the fourth-placed team has a final chance to qualify for the intercontinental knockout round.
Canada beat Costa Rica in Edmonton on Friday, ahead of more than 48,806 at Commonwealth Stadium. That game was played at 1 C – what some in Edmonton would consider fairly peaceful November conditions.
But Environment Canada is calling for heavy snowfall for Tuesday, followed by possibly -11C temperatures around the warm-up game – and that’s before the wind chill counts.
“I think it will make for a great game. One for the books for sure, “St. Pierre said.
“It was clearly the opportunity of a lifetime, not only for Team Canada… but also for Edmonton to be in the 2026 World Cup.”
Fans are encouraged to take public transport and make time to get to the Commonwealth for the game.
A city traffic official said snow was being cleared from roads around the stadium.
“We are prioritizing the routes the charter bus will take, the parking lot, the entrances, the gates and all the infrastructure leading up to the actual stadium itself,” said Andrew Grant, general manager of the operation. infrastructure in the city.
“I know our partners in the Commonwealth have it all.”
Expect good weather for Canada vs Mexico World Cup qualifying match in Edmonton
Former soccer player and avid fan of the Mexico Team Luis Enreique Rangel Garcia moved to Edmonton 4 months ago.
This is his first winter in the city and he will be attending the game with his family on Tuesday night.
“We are very excited,” he said. “I’ve never been to a Mexican game…so this is a good opportunity.”
While Garcia personally loves snow, he believes it will create difficult conditions for the Mexican team.
“I think this weather is tough weather for Mexico. We are not used to playing in the snow in Mexico. It will be a tough match. “
But he still thinks they can win.
Sam Adekugbe grew up in Calgary and played professional football in Norway, so he knows a thing or two about dealing with inclement weather.
When asked about the coldest game he ever played, his memory returned to Scandinavia.
“Probably, Norway, the little town called Tromso, is down to -15,” Adekubge said after the Canadian national team trained indoors Monday at the Scottish Dome south of Edmonton.
“It was cold, but we survived.”
Defender Steven Vitoria said the weather would not affect the team.
“We grew up in this,” he said. “We joked around with each other for the week, which brought us back to our childhood. We are very happy.
“We will not find any excuses. We’ll leave it all out there, whether it’s sunny or snowy. ”
He said the weather was not a factor Friday, because fan support for Canada was strong and the players were able to ride on the wave of emotions.
“We didn’t really feel it, we took the heat off the fans and we think tomorrow night will be very important.”
Coach John Herdman said he expected nothing more than a fight between the two teams; Mexico beat Canada 2-1 in the Gold Cup, but Canada drew Mexico 1-1 at the Azteca Stadium earlier in qualifying.
“The pitch will be the same setup, it’s a narrow field for both games,” he said. “But the field conditions are narrow, it won’t be a problem.
“It will be an absolute war. That’s what we plan to bring. Both teams want to finish first at the end of the year.”
The field in the Commonwealth is narrow because there are athletic tracks around. During training at the Scottish Dome on Monday, trivia was included so the team could recreate the stadium’s conditions.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in Edmonton Monday morning to announce the childcare plan, visited the group during the session.
“I just wanted you to know that we are all so excited about what you have achieved, what you will continue to achieve, and know that we are really, really supportive of all of you,” Trudeau said. with the players.
Trudeau visits Canada men’s soccer team before important World Cup qualifier against Mexico
Trudeau asked the team if they thought the cold weather and snowfall would be an advantage over Mexico.
“They won’t like it,” said one team member.
“It’s not like you’ve grown hair. No one will like it, but have you gotten used to it a bit more? ‘ asked Trudeau.
The players smiled and nodded.
“He reminded us that we are all here as a nation, and that we all have the same goal of raising the profile of our country as high as possible, “Vitoria talks about meeting with Trudeau.
– With files from Daniela Germano, Canadian Press
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https://globalnews.ca/news/8376011/world-cup-qualifier-canada-mexico-edmonton-snow-commonwealth-stadium/ | ‘Essence of Edmonton’ winter blast occurred before the World Cup qualifying match between Canada and Mexico