Toronto FC are staring down the barrel of a very busy schedule in the coming weeks. It is a stretch of games that will put the depth of the team to the test on a regular basis and those tests will begin on Wednesday evening against the Montreal Impact.
In the first leg of the club's Voyageurs Cup semifinal against the Impact, Geg Vanney elected to take the chance to rest a number of his key players with Sebastian Giovinco and Jozy Altidore both being left in Toronto rather than traveling with the team for the game. The end result of those lineup decisions was a 1-0 defeat for the team that means they will now need to win the return leg to keep their hopes of reaching the Voyageurs Cup final alive.
Following training on Tuesday morning, Vanney offered an update on his roster situation with little changing from recent weeks. Steven Caldwell is still listed as out, Mark Bloom remains questionable, and while Joe Bendik is getting closer to being ready to return he will not be ready in time for the game on Wednesday. Clement Simonin was not specifically mentioned but we know that he is likely going to be on the sidelines for quite some time still due to his minor knee surgery.
While it is good to see the roster moving closer to full fitness in recent weeks it is proving to be a long road back to fitness for Caldwell and Bloom who have seemed to be just a few weeks away for over a month now. At the rate they seem to be progressing it could be quite some time before we actually see either defender back in action.
One player who will not be missing any time is Sebastian Giovinco. He seemed to be nursing a bit of a knock following the game on Sunday but Vanney indicated the Italian dynamo would be available for selection against the Impact. The real question will be if Vanney elects to use him having left him out of the 18 in the first leg.
Vanney did not give much of an indication of just what his lineup would look like for the return leg on Wednesday evening. With his team trailing by 1-0 goal after the first 90 minutes of play it would not be a surprise to see him go with a few more of his regular starters for this game but it is unlikely that fans at BMO will get to see the first choice XI with players like Jonathan Osorio and Eriq Zavaleta likely to see playing time.