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Gerba, Billy, among seven Impact cuts

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The Montreal Impact’s brain trust has told seven players who represented the club in NASL that they won’t be part of the team’s MLS plans for 2012.

Striker Ali Gerba — who played for the Canadian national team as recently as this summer’s Gold Cup — is the biggest name on the list. French import Philippe Billy was cut loose, as was New Zealand defender Cameron Knowles, American midfielders David Testo and Luke Kreamalmeyer, and Canadian forwards Marco Terminesi and Pierre Rudolph-Mayard.

As for the seven players, it will be interesting to see if they get offers from any of the other NASL general managers. FC Edmonton signed former Impact Alex Surprenant in 2011 after he was cut by Montreal.

“Those decisions are not easy to take, but we must look forward,” said Impact sporting director Nick De Santis in a release. “The league that we are joining in five months is completely different and the challenges that we face are heavy. These players are fierce competitors who fought for the well-being of the team, but they are not figuring into our future plans. We want to thank them for their contribution throughout the last few years in second division.”

“I wanted to see the players a little bit closer, in action on the field, but also to better evaluate who they are,” said coach Jesse Marsch. “If a player wants to be successful individually, he must also understand the reality of collective play while helping others to reach their potential. I did not have a lot of surprises during the camp. However, I saw little details that I had not seen before.”

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