Canada plays to a goalless draw with the U.S. in an international friendly

Associated Press

TORONTO - Canada's men national team played the United States to a 0-0 draw Sunday in an international friendly.

The game's most exciting moments came in second-half stoppage time as both teams missed glorious chances to snatch a winner.

Canadian substitute Simeon Jackson made things difficult for the U.S. defenders after entering the game as the home side pressed for its first win against its neighbour in 27 years.

He just failed to connect on a pass from Dwayne De Rosario in stoppage time in front of the crowd of 15,247 at BMO Field.

Then moments later at the other end, Canadian goalkeeper Lars Hirschfeld knocked a ball over the bar on a header from Clarence Goodson off a free kick.

While the U.S. team was playing its third exhibition game in a little more than a week, the Canadians were on the pitch together for the first time in more than three months as they prepare for the next phase of qualifying for the 2014 World Cup.

Canada hadn't played since a 3-1 loss to Armenia in February and the rust showed in the early going. But Canada began to mesh better as the game wore and had a goal called back because of a foul in the latter stages of the first half.

The Americans, meanwhile, were coming off a pair of contrasting friendly results, having defeated Scotland 5-1 last Saturday and then losing to Brazil 4-1 on Wednesday.

Canada last beat the U.S. on April 2, 1985, a 2-0 result in Vancouver. The U.S. holds a 12-8-10 advantage over Canada in their meetings.

The U.S. had most of the early play with Jermaine Jones having a shot blocked in the second minute and Goodson missing to the left with a shot from close range about a minute later.

But the Canadians settled in and began to do some attacking of their own. De Rosario roused the Canadian fans in the ninth minute when he had his shot from the left side of the goal go past the right post.

Hirschfeld tipped a shot from Edgar Castillo over the bar in the 15th minute.

Canada came back with some pressure and it resulted in a chance in the 23rd minute when Tosaint Ricketts forced U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard to make a save on his shot from the centre of the box.

Nik Ledgerwood put the ball into the top left corner of the goal for Canada in the 34th minute but it didn't count after because of a foul.

Late in the first half, Hirschfeld was called upon to save on Clint Dempsey's shot from the right side of the box.

Jackson ended a nifty jaunt in 68th minute by launching a ball from just outside the penalty area barely over the crossbar.

Notes: Canada plays its World Cup qualifying second-round opener, June 8 at Cuba. ... The teams last meet in June 2011 when the U.S. beat Canada 2-0 at the CONCACAF Gold Cup.

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