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What’s the plan with Eric Miller and Blake Smith?

After a good start to their respective careers, defender Eric Miller and midfielder Blake Smith are not playing enough minutes to get better. What are Frank Klopas and Adam Braz planning for those two youngsters? If plan there is...

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The Montreal Impact is playing a lot of games since the beginning of the season. Combining MLS and the Concacaf Champions League is not an easy task for anybody. Add that some key players that are injured like Cameron Porter or Justin Mapp and you might think that the youngsters are seeing a lot of playing time so far.

0 is the magic number. In fact, they did not hit the field at all this year, either with the Impact or FC Montreal. Houston we got a problem here!

I’m not saying those players must start every game and they are with no doubt games changers. NO But those players are young and they are right in the middle of their development cycle. In every sport, the more playing time you get ,when you are under 25 , the better it is as it's a big part of a player reaching his full potential or not.

Right now, they only get playing time in practice, which is good but there is nothing like a real game to learn the little things and be a better player.

So the million dollar question is: What’s next for them? I truly think that with the depth of the Impact at almost every position, they will not play a lot in MLS this season. Even Hassoun Camara , who is a veteran, is warming the bench.

FC Montreal

Not the solution in my opinion. I don’t think playing at a level like the USL is going to be helpful to help both Smith and Miller reach their full potential. They have proven , up to an extent, that they can play in MLS plus Smith had a good season with the Indy Eleven in the NASL last year. The management team must loan them so they can get significant minutes with a professional team and get experience.

All over MLS or even the World, soccer teams are developing their young players by playing them or loaning them elsewhere. It is one of the tools a club can use to develop young players into starters. It is important to sign DP players but you can only have three on the roster while having to spend a lot to acquire them.

As Toronto FC spends millions and millions of dollars, the DP stock price will only rise! That's why developing players you drafted is a very good way to get a good return on investment in the future.

That’s why the only solution I see is to loan them to another team and follow their development. Next year, you look where they are exactly and see if there is a real potential in them. One thing is sure: They will not get better by resting on the bench. They need to play and play a lot.