SALON DE PROVENCE, France — Mathieu Choiniere scored in a losing cause Thursday as Canada suffered its first setback at a prestigious youth soccer tournament, falling 2-1 to France in the fifth-place game.
Canada finished play at the 12-country Festival International Espoirs, better known as the Toulon Tournament, with a 1-1-2 record. Canada was playing at the event for the first time.
Axel Bakayoko, a winger currently on loan with France's Sochaux from Inter Milan, scored for France in the 24th minute. Steve Ambri, who plays for Valenciennes FC in the french second-tier, added to the lead in the 72nd minute.
Choiniere, who is part of the Montreal Impact academy, scored his first youth international goal three minutes later.
Canada fielded an under-21 side while France went with an under-20 squad.
The Canadians tied Portugal 0-0 and Japan 1-1 and beat Turkey 1-0 in preliminary-round play. They missed out on the semifinals when Turkey defeated Portugal 2-1 to finish one point ahead in their group.
The Toulon event has seen the likes of Zinedine Zidane, Cristiano Ronaldo, Thierry Henry, Jean-Pierre Papin, Cafu, Alan Shearer and Frank Lampard since its inception in 1967.
Senior coach John Herdman and assistant Mauro Biello ran the sidelines in Toulon.
The Canadian Press