Despite the Montreal Impact's miraculous run to the Eastern Conference Finals only to be stopped by a team highlighted by Michael Bradley, Jozy Altidore and Sebastien Giovinco in Toronto FC, there has been plenty to be optimistic about after such successful campaign.
Unfortunately, inconsistency from the offensive and defensive facets of the game has halted our playoff hopes.
Due to Montreal's mediocre play, Mauro Biello should consider testing his youngsters more on a consistent basis to comprehend what the Impact maintains within, talent wise. Knowing that a playoff spot may be far fetched, now would be an immeasurable time for Biello to test his young players like Anthony Jackson-Hamel, David Choiniere, Ballou Tabla, Michael Salazar and Louis Beland-Goyette just to name a few.
A recurring theme we witnessed throughout this campaign was that Mauro Biello held the tendency to rely on his veterans as opposed to his younger players. A prime example of that cause would be the use of Italian forward: Matteo Mancosu. Despite the Italian's inconsistent play, Mauro Biello opted to utilize the former Bologna forward over the likes of Jackson-Hamel. With the limited playing time Hamel earned, the Quebec City native has performed admirably whenever he was granted the chance.
In 15 appearances with the Impact, Jackson-Hamel scored 7 goals. In 21 appearances, Matteo Mancosu scored a measly 4 goals. The Canadian international has scored in 47% of his games whilst Mancosu only scoring in 19% of his games. We should also note that Mancosu started in 18 matches. Anthony Jackson-Hamel only started in 6 matches.
We also cannot overlook the teenage prodigy in Ballou Tabla. Tabla's ceiling for potential has been skyrocketing since breaking through to the MLS. We knew what we had in Ballou Tabla when we first caught a glimpse of him in a friendly vs. Roma. Unfortunately, Mauro Biello has nevertheless remained reluctant to start the Ivorian born Canadian over players like Dominic Oduro. The Ghana native has been extremely inconsistent for the vast majority of the season. When Oduro has been inconsistent, Ballou Tabla would certainly have been a suitable replacement for Oduro considering his offensive acumen. Even though Dominic Oduro is the seasoned vet, Tabla brings a lot more to the table. Tabla's style of play would certainly bode well with the Impact's style of play.
When all said and done, the Impact maintains a core of young players who should be contending for a spot in the starting 11 in the near future.