Monday, April 11, 2011

Canadian content report: April 11th

For the first time this season, we had a weekend with all 4 Canadian pro teams in action. Montreal (a 1-0 loss) and Edmonton (a 2-1 win) made their NASL season debuts, while Toronto FC battled to a 1-1 draw Saturday night in San Jose. Vancouver has had two matches since our last report: a 9-man 1-1 draw against New England, and a depressing 3-1 loss in Houston.

FC Edmonton have so far failed provide a detailed match report listing players and substitutions, but I'm tired of waiting and have cobbled together some details of their Canadian content from other sources and will update once official info becomes available. [Edit: more details now available]

The Canadian content for the week of April 4th to 10th:

Terry Dunfield (38), Kevin Harmse (23)
at HOUSTON: Russell Teibert (45)
Total: 106 of 1900 minutes

Like the team's showing in Houston, Vancouver's on-pitch Canadian content over this past week was dismal. Terry Dunfield's injury does not bode well for improving this stat over the short- to medium-term. The injury had the faintest of silver linings, which was to open the door a crack for Kevin Harmse's 2011 MLS debut, but he must not have impressed as Teitur Thordarson opted Sunday for a starting midfield of left back Alain Rochat and the clearly terrible Jeb Brovsky. Russell Teibert got 45 minutes on Sunday after returning from a failed U20 qualification effort for Canada, and looked decent enough.

TORONTO (at SAN JOSE): Adrian Cann (90), Nana Attakora (45), Julian de Guzman (45), Gianluca Zavarise (27)
Total: 207 of 990 minutes

This stat line for Canadian players revealed two trends: one encouraging and one disquieting. Let's start with the good news: for the second straight week, Julian de Guzman, returning from off-season surgery, played the entire 2nd half and by all accounts stabilized what had been a shaky midfield in the first 45 minutes. The bad news? Aron Winter clearly lacks faith in young Nana Attakora, removing him in a tactical substitution for the second straight week, this week even earlier than last. Lastly, it is good to see Gianluca Zavarise emerging as a key bench player.

MONTREAL (at TAMPA BAY): Nevio Pizzolitto (90), Simon Gatti (90), Pierre-Rudolph Mayard (90), Ali Gerba (90), Antonio Ribeiro (70), Mircea Ilcu (1)
Total: 431 of 990 minutes

Montreal lacks a bit in Canadian depth this season, with only 7 Canadian players on the roster listed on their website. However, most of these figure to be key components of the squad this year and should receive a good chunk of minutes. I'd expect all of the players above except Ilcu and possibly Mayard to start the majority of matches. Speaking of Ilcu, he is not on the team's roster page, but what little information I can find suggests he holds dual Canadian/Romanian citizenship. Do correct me if I'm wrong on this front.

Alex Surprenant (70***), Paul Hamilton (90), Dominic Oppong (90), Antonio Rago (90), Shaun Saiko (90), Kyle Yamada (90) , Chris Kooy (90), Alex Semenets (90), Chris Lemire (89)
subs: Eddy Sidra (20***), Sam Lam (1)
Total: 810 of 990 minutes

As mentioned above, I haven't yet been able to find official data about this match. The best I could do was a tweet from the Fort Lauderdale Strikers account that listed the starting lineup for Edmonton. As much as the 2-1 result was encouraging, what was most encouraging to me as a neutral (especially since I didn't see the match) was that 9 of 11 starters were Canadian, while at least one Canadian, Eddy Sidra, made an appearance off the bench.

EDIT: The team has now posted a more detailed match report providing most of the necessary information except the exact timing of the subs.

*** I've estimated the timing of the Eddy Sidra for Alex Surprenant substitution. Since both players are Canadian, the total Canadian minutes on the day is correct.

As always, you can view the details of the Canadian content data here.

April 13th: Toronto vs Los Angeles, 8 pm et
April 16th: Vancouver vs Chivas, 6 pm et
April 16th: Toronto vs DC United, 7 pm et
April 16th: Montreal at Carolina, 7 pm et
April 16th: Edmonton at Atlanta, 7:30 pm et

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