After a relatively short hiatus, MLS clubs returned to work this past week with the official kick-off of pre-season training camps.
With the start of the 2022 regular season just over a month away, several teams will be under the gun as they have roster holes to fill and player moves to make before heading out onto the pitch.
All three MLS clubs in Canada, as well as two of the league’s top Canadian players, also face burning questions in training camp ahead of the start of the regular season on Feb. 26.
What will Toronto FC do about its DP situation?
The recent signing of Lorenzo Insigne means Toronto FC has four designated players, one over the league limit. TFC has until Insigne arrives in July to move one of their current three DPs in order to accommodate the Italian.
By all accounts Alejandro Pozuelo is safe. The Spanish midfielder, who was voted league MVP in 2020, will be out of contract at the end of this coming season. But he has openly talked about wanting to sign a new deal, and the club is keen to offer an extension to the talented playmaker.
That leaves either Jozy Altidore or Yeferson Soteldo making way for Insigne — or both. Sources told Sportsnet that TFC is attempting to buy out Altidore from his contract, while at the same time trying to offload Soteldo, either via transfer or a trade.
MLS teams are allowed one buyout per year, but it must happen before the start of the regular season in order to get salary cap relief. Clubs can still buy out a player once the season begins, but his entire salary would remain on the books. With the 2022 MLS campaign set to begin in just over a month, TFC doesn’t have much time left to buy out Altidore.
Can Vanni Sartini continue to inspire Vancouver Whitecaps?
The Whitecaps named Sartini their full-time head coach in November, rewarding