According to multiple sources, at least three Canadian Men's National Team players plying their trade in England were released on Friday, as teams there reshuffle their rosters during the off-season. This means that three more Canadian players will now be members of 'Unattached FC', at least for the time being.
Edgar's Heavy Resumé
David Edgar has been playing in England since 2005, beginning his career with Newcastle United. He has made 37 appearances with the Canadian National Team and has 3 goals. Despite being listed as a defender, the 29 year old has often found himself playing as a defensive midfielder, or right-back. With teams all over Europe looking to augment their defense this off-season, it is likely that he will find work overseas. However, Northern Starting XI have reported that he is in training with the Vancouver Whitecaps. Whether or not a return to Canada is in the works for Edgar remains to be seen, as Vancouver recently acquired right-back Fraser Aird on loan from Rangers in Scotland. However, the Canadian international has often proved ineffective in MLS, and they may see Edgar as an improvement.
Jackson's Experienced Pedigree
Simeon Jackson has been playing top-level football since 2010, when he signed a professional contract with Norwich City in England. He is a veteran of both the German and English top flight levels, and has made 47 appearances for Canada, netting 6 goals. The 29 year old forward was born in Jamaica, but qualified to play for Canada due to the citizenship of his family, and his residency here during his youth. Unlike Edgar, Jackson has played outside of England, and will probably want to continue playing in Europe. He is not training with a Canadian club at present. His natural playing position of forward would complicate any transfer back to Canada, as both Toronto FC, L'Impact de Montréal and Vancouver Whitecaps already have three designated players involved in the attack. Jackson would be an expensive back-up striker in an era of tight salary-caps. Of the three clubs however, Montréal may lose both Didier Drogba and Ignacio Piatti at the end of 2016. Perhaps Jackson could become an option as a forward for the Impact then?
Where will Junior Hoilett Go?
Hoilett disputed 112 matches with Queen's Park Rangers, netting only 12 goals in 4 seasons. He has never scored for Canada, despite making 7 appearances. He has played in England since 2007, a nation once he said he one day wished to represent internationally. The 26 year old winger would be in the same boat as Jackson if he sought a contract in Canada. He offers too little for his price tag. Additionally, with Hoilett's previous statements, it is likely that he wants to stay in England and continue in the Premier League.
Best Bang for Our Buck
Of the three CANMNT players released, only David Edgar offers something Montréal really needs - another solid defender. Mount Royal Soccer has long been advocating for a stronger right-back that can get into the attack more frequently, without compromising our defensive structure. David Edgar fits that slot perfectly. This would allow Mauro Biello to switch Ambroise Oyongo to left-back, and effectively compensate the loss of Donny Toia to injury. He could even step into the defensive midfielder role in the absence of Marco Donadel. Furthermore, Edgar is a Canadian, and would not occupy a foreign player slot on the roster.
Sadly, Edgar is training in Vancouver with the Whitecaps. Perhaps our shiny new training facility can lure him to Montréal? Of all the players on the National Team, Edgar would be the best bang for our buck.