Last week the Montreal Impact announced that Philippe Eullaffroy would be the head coach of the new USL-Pro team, FC Montreal. With FC Montreal in place it will allow the Impact a better avenue for player development. It will allow for a more competitive place for players to grow, compared to the current U23 and (the now defunct) MLS Reserve League.
With Eullaffroy taking the reigns of the new FC Montreal team it can be assumed the team will primarily be made up of players from the 2014 U23 team. The new USL-Pro team however will also allow for players from the U18 Impact team and first team Impact players that may not play every week a chance to get competitive playing time.
Just before the final two U23 matches in October, Eullaffroy was quoted as saying
This week will be an emotional one as we are in our third assessment where we will announce the youngsters who will continue with in USL-Pro and those who will no longer take part. The decisions are very difficult knowing that all these young players have the quality.
The question right now is who will be on the roster to start the 2015 season? Below are some options for players to start next season with FC Montreal.
Potential Players for 2015:
Maxime Crépeau -
Last season Crépeau started a number of games for the Impact on the bench, however did not see any playing time. It would be risky for the Impact to go into 2015 with a backup keeper that has never played a game. There is a good chance Crépeau starts 2015 with FC Montreal.
Louis Béland-Goyette -
Louis signed for the first team in September 2014. He got into one game for the Impact in 2014 as a sub. And played for roughly 15 minutes in a 2-1 loss to the New England Revolution. Béland-Goyette was also on the Canadian U20 national team that just defeated the US and Russia.
Frédéric Lajoie-Gravelle -
Frédéric lead the U23 team in scoring in 2014 with 16 goals. He was also named the breakthrough player of the year. Has the potential to be a starter for FC Montreal in 2015.
Nazim Belguendouz -
Nazim was the most used player on the U23 team in 2014 also scoring 11 goals.
Janouk Charbonneau -
Janouk has a good chance to be a starting defender on FC Montreal in 2015. He was voted the best defensive player of 2014 on the U23 team at the end of season awards.
Philippe Lincourt-Joseph -
Philippe is a midfielder that was second on the U23 team with 10 assists with 10.
Chakib Hocine -
Chakib was voted 'top competitor' at the end of season awards for the U23 team.
Victor N'Diaye -
Victor led the U23 team with 14 assists in 2014.
Other Mentionable Names:
David Choinière and Thomas Meilleur-Giguère and Jimmy-Shammar Sanon play for the U18 Canadian national team and could feature on FC Montreal (If not at the start of the season, in the near future.)
The Montreal Impact will have some some difficult personnel decisions during the process of building the lineup for FC Montreal. However, regardless of who is on the roster to start the 2015 season, the establishment of this team should pay dividends in the years to come.