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Will Laurent Ciman be at Euro 2016?

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In an interview with SoFoot.com this week, Laurent Ciman addressed his transition to Canada, being named MLS Defender of the year, and his place on the Belgian National team.

Laurent Ciman playing for Belgium in a EURO 2012 qualifying game.
Laurent Ciman playing for Belgium in a EURO 2012 qualifying game.
Christof Koepsel/Getty Images

Laurent Ciman has made the most of his first year in Montreal.

Ciman was an integral piece to the Impact making it to the finals of CONCACAF. The strategy appeared to be mostly defensive - and with good reason. Team management knew that fighting fire with fire might lead to disappointment. As such, the star centre back was key to Frank Klopas' game plan.

Ciman was also one of the main reasons that the Impact's defensive stats improved so drastically from 2014 to 2015 (not to be forgotten here is Evan Bush). Consequently, and with a little help from a certain Didier Drogba, the team finished 3rd in the East and even their first-ever playoff round.

In November, Ciman was named MLS Defender of the year, beating out FC Dallas' Matt Hedges and Vancouver's Kendall Waston for the honor. Even though many knowledgeable fans weren't surprised by this, it still shocks our humble city when we are recognized by league-wide awards. Montreal Impact fans can expect Ciman to be even better this upcoming year, as his performance on the pitch only improved throughout the course of last year.

Here are excerpts from SoFoot.com's interview with Ciman, also available here:

Et la vie au club ?

Ça se passe bien, c’est très professionnel. Ils parlent anglais et français, donc c’est bien pour moi. Que ce soit avec le staff médical, technique ou même les autres, tout se passe très bien. L’ambiance y est très familiale, comme en Belgique.

Le championnat est aussi assez différent de la Belgique, comment tu décrirais le style de jeu outre-Atlantique ?

C’est comme la Premier League. Ça se sent dans les duels, beaucoup jouent avec les mains et les bras. C’est assez différent de ce que j’ai connu en Belgique. J’ai eu un temps d’adaptation lors des premiers matchs qui m’a fait comprendre certaines choses.

Pour en revenir à ce titre de meilleur défenseur de la MLS, tu penses que Marc Wilmots aurait pu le prendre comme un message, du fait qu’il t’a un peu oublié avec les Diables ?

Je n’en sais rien, moi je fais mon taf ici.

S’il me sélectionne, j’en suis toujours fier. Je l’ai toujours dit et je le redis bien haut : le coach fait ses choix et nous, joueurs, on s’adapte. Évidemment, j’espère faire partie des 23, mais je n’en fais pas une fixation.

What should jump out at Impact fans here is the third question. It is important to remember that the MLS regular season does not break for the weeks that the Euro Cup is being played. Therefore, if Ciman is selected to the Belgian team, he will be out of action for the Impact from between June 10th (or earlier depending on travel/preparation) to as late as July 10th (depending on how far Belgium advances).

It is likely that Impact management are rooting against the selection of Ciman to the team, despite the fact that it would be good exposure for the player as well as for the team. And it's hard to blame them.

This could be why the Impact targeted a center back with their first selection in the SuperDraft this season and why they pursued Victor Cabrera so heavily. They may have been planning for a significant time period without Ciman.

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Would you prioritize Ciman's development and the exposure of the team, or would you prefer that Ciman stays and plays with the Impact for their regular season games throughout Euro 2016?