Home Canadian Soccer Canada names roster for Denmark, U.S. friendlies: Miller says no conflict in Porter callup

Canada names roster for Denmark, U.S. friendlies: Miller says no conflict in Porter callup

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Kyle Porter in action against Atlanta.
Interim national-team head coach Colin Miller has called in a squad that mixes youth and experience for Canada’s two upcoming friendly.

FC Edmonton’s coach is taking the reins of the national side for a Jan. 26 date with Denmark in Tucson, Ari. and a Jan. 29 clash with the U.S. in Houston. He then reports back to FC Edmonton in time for the NASL combine.

While mainstays such as keeper Lars Hirschfeld and Canada’s all-time leading scorer, Dwayne De Rosario, are on the roster, Miller also gave nods to Philippe Davies, who spent last season in the USL, and Kyle Porter, who spent two seasons in the NASL.

The average of the team is 25.

If there is any one spot on the roster where anyone would question the division of Miller’s loyalties between his club and country, it’s the decision to include forward Kyle Porter in the squad.

Officially, Porter is one of five unattached players Miller has called into team, as the forward has yet to accept a new contract offer from FCE. Miller has previously confirmed (CLICK HERE FOR THAT STORY) that the Eddies have given Porter, who has scored 12 times over the last two NASL seasons, a deadline to sign the offer, or else the club will move on without him.

Miller admitted that most of the team “was picked for me prior to my announcement (as interim head coach). I partly inherited this group.” But he stressed that the decision to bring in Porter was his.

“He’s a good player. He was the last cut from the Olympic team… I know he’s desperate to play for his country,” said Miller.

With that in mind, he said it was easy to keep Porter’s contract issues with FCE and the needs of the national team “completely separate.” Miller said he was thinking of getting Porter the invitation “long before the contract side of things” emerged at the club.

Miller said many players weren’t available for selection. Midfielder Will Johnson is settling in with his new Portland Timbers mates. Youth stars Lucas Cavallini and Samuel Piette were left alone due to respect for their clubs in Uruguay and Germany. Miller said those players are either close to finding new clubs or breaking into first-team football.

Because so many players are out of contract and are auditioning for clubs in the January transfer period, Miller admitted for many it’s a choice between the country or paying the bills.

“I’ve been there myself,” he said.

The agent for goalkeeper Tomer Chencinski confirmed his client had been called by Canada, but was unable to come to the U.S. for camp. Chencinski just signed with Maccabi Tel Aviv and is settling in with his new club.

As for the unattached players, such as former Huddersfield goalkeeper Simon Thomas, ex-Impact midfielder Evan James (who, by the way, is Porter’s best friend), Mason Trafford and midfielder Jonathan Beaulieu-Bourgault, the games could be a way to get their names out there — especially to MLS and NASL teams that will be in training-camp mode in February. It’s a chance for them to show clubs, as Miller said, that they can “do the simple things right and show the right attitude.”

But, as Miller inherited most of the roster, he admitted that “there are guys I genuinely don’t know.” And the first days of camp will see him tested in remembering names.

But there are veterans on the squad . And Miller wants the young players to look up to Hirschfeld and De Rosario.

“It will be good for young players to see (De Rosario’s) movement on the field and the quality he has on set pieces,” said Miller.

And keepers Roberto Stillo and Thomas can apprentice under Hirschfeld.

“They can see how hard he trains, how hard he works,” said Miller.

CANADA ROSTER
1- GK- Lars Hirschfeld | NOR / Valerenga Fotball
2- M- Nik Ledgerwood | SWE / Hammarby Fotboll
3- FB- Ashtone Morgan | CAN / Toronto FC
4- CB- Nana Attakora | FIN / FC Haka
5- CB- Dejan Jakovic | USA / D.C. United
6- M- Philippe Davies | USA / Richmond Kickers
7- M – Terry Dunfield | CAN / Toronto FC
8- CM- Kyle Bekker | CAN / Toronto FC
9- F- Tosaint Ricketts | NOR / Sandnes Ulf
10- F- Frank Jonke | FIN / FF Jaro
11- M – Russell Teibert | CAN / Vancouver Whitecaps FC
12- M- Jonathan Beaulieu-Bourgault |
13- CB- Doneil Henry | CAN / Toronto FC
14- M/F- Dwayne De Rosario | USA / D.C. United
15- M- Emmanuel Gomez | ARG / Club Atletico Griffa
16- M – Matt Stinson | CAN / Toronto FC
17- F- Kyle Porter | CAN |
18- GK- Roberto Stillo | ITA / Genoa CFC
19- M- Evan James |
20- D- Mason Trafford |
21- FB- Andres Fresenga | URU / Racing Club de Montevideo
22- GK- Simon Thomas |

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5 Comments

  1. Rango

    January 20, 2013 at 12:42 am

    No Saiko? What’s your guess on his absence, Steve?

    Reply

    • Steven Sandor

      January 20, 2013 at 1:30 am

      Remember that Shaun missed about the last month of the season with a knee issue. He is training now, but it did slow his progress over the off-season.

      Reply

      • Rango

        January 21, 2013 at 3:04 am

        Did he play in the December old boys’ game? If his injury is that serious, then I’m guessing that the Evan Daum’s hope of seeing him were pretty off base:

        http://www.edmontonjournal.com/sports/soccer/Edmonton+head+coach+lead+Canadian+team+interim+basis/7792537/story.html

        I see that Hamilton didn’t get a look for the Nats, either.

        Reply

        • Steven Sandor

          January 21, 2013 at 3:09 am

          Yes, he did lead the “Senior Selects” in those games. But, to be fair, even he admitted he was a little out of game shape. Still, you could make an argument… considering that Miller said that Porter was the last cut on the Olympic team when, ahem, Shaun was ON said Olympic team.

          Reply

  2. footy

    January 19, 2013 at 11:21 am

    Always would have guessed Rago would be the first of the Edmonton bunch to get the call. Well, maybe now Porter will sign a new contract in Alberta’s capital. Nothing more flattering on a player than a couple of big losses in international friendlies. The European clubs love that!

    Reply

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