With Toronto FC leaving for Orlando and the Mickey Mouse Cup, also known as the Disney Pro Soccer Classic, we finally got word of who would be traveling with the team. The surprise of the list released today is that the team is taking 7 of the 9 academy players along with them. In total the coaching staff have decided to bring 33 players to Florida. The players staying behind are Dicoy Williams, Nicholas Lindsay, and Jeremy Hall who are all nursing various injuries. Staying in Toronto with them will be academy players Brandon John and Tristan Jackman who will rejoin the youth team and train with them.
It is fairly surprising that the team has elected to bring so many of the academy players along with them but the coaches will want to see some of them in game action. For a player like Stefan Vukovic the preseason tournament in Orlando represents the final hurdle before landing a potential home grown contract. On the other end of the spectrum you have Jordan Hamilton, still only 15 years old, who is almost certainly coming along just to gain experience in the first team setting.
In the end, the coaching staff have been true to their word and did not make any further cuts prior to playing any exhibition matches. Efrain Borgus Jr. and Michael Green, the only supplemental picks left, are still with the team and are considered by many to have a shot of making the 30 man roster.
The other big news of the day is that fans back in Toronto are going to be able to catch the matches against Orlando City, BK Haken, and FC Dallas. It was confirmed today that fans will be able to tune in to any of the group stage games on mlssoccer.com. We will have to wait and see if the stream is of better quality than what was provided during the combine but at least there is a chance of getting something.The full 33 man roster heading to Florida today is as follows (from torontofc.ca):
MF – Eric Avila, Elbekay Bouchiba, Efrain Burgos, Jr. (SD), *Sergio Camargo (A), *Jay Chapman (A), *Oscar Cordon, *Julian de Guzman, *Terry Dunfield, Torsten Frings, Michael Green (S), Reggie Lambe, Luis Silva (SD), *Matt Stinson
A – Academy
SD – SuperDraft pick
S – Supplemental Draft pick
* – Canadian or local player
And just a little bit of a teaser video from the MLS site which is supposed to get you excited for the tournament but is really just a collection of a few highlights from the MLS teams involved.