Moment 5: Canada reaches quarter-final at 1984 Olympics

Canadian team finished fifth after elimination by Brazil on kicks from the penalty mark.

Four years after being knocked out by Bermuda in Olympic Qualifying, Canada made no mistake in kicking off what would be its best Olympic run in modern football history. Starting with a 6:0 victory over Bermuda on 8 May 1983, Canada steadily made its way through CONCACAF by posting four wins, three draws and just one loss in a 12-month qualifying campaign. The run included a 1:0 victory over Mexico at Royal Athletic Park in Victoria, BC, with Craig Martin scoring the lone goal for Canada’s newly-hired coach Tony Waiters.

Moment 5: Canada reaches quarter-final at 1984 Olympics

After booking its spot in April 1984 (again in Victoria), Canada then headed east to play its Olympic group matches in Cambridge, MA. Starting with a 1:1 draw against Iraq (with a goal by Gerry Gray), Canada then lost 0:1 to Yugoslavia before blasting past Cameroon with a 3:1 win (with two goals by striker Dale Mitchell). The record of one win, one draw and one loss put Canada in the quarter-final against Brazil, with the match to be played across the country in Palo Alto, CA just three days after Canada’s final group match. Despite the travel, Canada nearly got the better of Brazil, taking a 1-0 lead in the 58th minute courtesy a Dale Mitchell goal in front of 36,150 fans at Stanford Stadium. After Brazil scored in the 72nd minute and neither side could find the back of the net for 30 minutes of extra time, the match was finally decided on kicks from the penalty mark: Brazil 4, Canada 2.

By finishing fifth at the Los Angeles 1984 Olympics, Canada posted its best result in a men’s senior football tournament. The result was the start of more good things to come for Canada’s national teams: under coach Waiters, 16 of Canada’s 1984 Olympians were also part of Canada’s run to the 1986 FIFA World Cup in Mexico.

The Canadian Soccer Association celebrates its 100th anniversary throughout the 2012 calendar year. While soccer (football) has been played in Canada since 1876, the Canadian Soccer Association (or the Dominion of Canada Football Association as it was known in the day) was inaugurated on 24 May 1912. As part of the centennial celebrations, the Canadian Soccer Association will unveil the “Top-10 Moments” in Canadian soccer history as well as engage soccer fans to select the “All-Time Canada XI” teams for men’s and women’s football. The celebrations will culminate with Canada’s two Centennial Matches – a Women’s International Friendly on 30 May in Moncton and a Men’s International Friendly match on 3 June in Toronto.

Tickets to Canada’s 3 June Centennial home match – as well three FIFA World Cup Qualifiers in June, September and October – are available via Ticketmaster (ticketmaster.ca / 1.855.570.7500) with full details at CanadaSoccer.com/seetheerise. Also to celebrate Canada’s 100th anniversary, Canada’s men’s and women’s national teams will wear a special blue Centennial Kit tailored by Umbro. The kit will be worn exclusively by the men on 3 June and by the women for a second Centennial match on 30 June at Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy, UT, USA. Limited quantities of Canada’s Centennial clothing line – including jersey, anthem jacket and cap – are available exclusively at CanadaSoccer.com.

Schedule & Results

Check out Canada Soccer’s Schedule & Results page where you can find upcoming match schedules and past results leading to highlights, photos, match data, and more.