Canadian harmony questioned ahead of England match

Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:54pm EDT
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By Steve Keating

VANCOUVER (Reuters) - The harmony surrounding Canada has hit a sour note this week and provided an unwanted distraction as the hosts prepare for a showdown with England on Saturday for a place in the women's World Cup semi-finals.

Coach John Herdman and his players have been forced to confront reports of poor team morale and dissention within the ranks following comments made by Christine Latham, a former member of the Canadian national team turned television analyst.

Latham reported prior to Canada's match against Switzerland last Sunday that defender Carmelina Moscato told her morale was low and there were divisions within the squad over Herdman's starting lineup.

Herdman laughed off the report, captain Christine Sinclair maintained that team bonds were strong, and Moscato said her comments had been misrepresented.

"Yeah, it’s terrible. It’s really terrible," Herdman said sarcastically following training on Wednesday.

"The girls are fighting each other. They hate each other. You see all the black eyes and the bloody noses."

Herdman said he would be "amazed" if the Moscato's comments were true.

"The player in question, she is one of our off-field leaders, she has got unbelievable integrity and to be questioning the calm I'd be amazed it there's any truth in that."   Continued...

Jun 5, 2015; Edmonton, Alberta, Canada; Canada head coach John Herdman leads his team through practice on the day before the first game of the FIFA women's soccer World Cup games at Commonwealth Stadium between Canada and China.   Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports -