The outcome and the pattern of play of the first leg of this CONCACAF 2018 World Cup Qualifying series would suggest the overall result is already decided: Canada won 3-0, and Belize was somewhat fortunate to keep the score down. It is difficult to imagine the Jaguars overturning a three-goal deficit, even at home. Les Rouges are firm favorites to progress to the next round of qualifying.
Still, if this is to be the end of Belize's road to Russia - stopping some distance short of the 2018 tournament - it will surely want to give good account of itself in front of its home crowd. Whether that means letting the game open up and hoping to find a goal or two or keeping things tight and hoping for a clean sheet remains to be seen.
For Canada, the immediate task appears simple: don't lose; certainly don't lose by more than three goals. It will be interesting to see whether head coach Benito Floro uses this game to further season his preferred starting lineup, or gives opportunity to younger, less-established members of his squad. Players like New York Red Bulls defender Karl Ouimette, for example.
Floro is saying the right things pre-match - focusing on the game ahead, being respectful of the opposition insofar as he is urging his team to redouble its focus in front of goal- but he must have an eye on the next round of qualifying. Canada's next challenge will be to finish first or second in a qualifying group comprising Mexico, Honduras and (most likely) El Salvador.
Belize vs. Canada
When: 9:00 p.m. ET, Tuesday, September 8
Where: FFP Stadium, Belmopan, Belize
TV: Not so much