Could TFC have World Cup goal scorer as their backup keeper against Santos? (via canadasoccer)
For many people the rules of the CONCACAF Champions League can be every bit as elusive and hard to understand as the constantly evolving rules of MLS. Both sets of rules have come in to play in recent days for Toronto FC as the club has had to deal with the injury to Stefan Frei. That left the club with only one keeper on the first team roster in Milos Kocic.
In MLS action they are allowed to bring in a goal keeper from the emergency pool which is what they did against the San Jose Earthquakes. The team brought in UCLA alum Bryan Rowe on an emergency basis and it seems that the Chivas USA Supplemental Draft pick will stay with the club for at least the near future.
Next up is the CCL match against Santos Laguna though and that brings in an entirely different set of rules. The structure of the emergency keeper means they are not really signed for the club and that means that they can not be used in CCL games. So that leaves Toronto once against with only Kocic available.
That is where another CCL rule comes in to play though. In that competition TFC will be able to bring in players from the academy without signing them to a professional contract. In fact, this is something that TFC has done before when they handed Ashtone Morgan his senior debut against Árabe Unido. The young defender really put himself on the radar with a great performance in the club's 1-0 win.
If Toronto wants to do that again they could very well bring Quillan Roberts in to serve as the backup keeper without having to sign him to a professional contract and mess up his potential eligibility for playing in the NCAA this fall. The club does have another option in the academy with Chad Bush but it seems that Roberts would be the first choice.
Roberts was with the senior team for the entire training camp and preseason. His involvement in friendlies was fairly limited but when the first team had returned to Toronto it was Roberts that got the start against the Vancouver Whitecaps ahead of Bush. He was quite impressive in that game and showed that he might just have enough about him to one day make the club's first team.
Roberts provides Aron Winter with the best option for a quick fix on Wednesday night. The idea of the 17 year old keeper actually taking to the field against Santos Laguna is a frightening thought but if all that is needed is someone to sit on the bench he should be able to do that just fine. After all, he did score a goal in the u-17 World Cup!