Oct 19, 2013; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Impact defender Matteo Ferrari (13) picks up teammate Karl W. Ouimette (34) alongside Wandrille Lefevre (55) after the game against the Philadelphia Union at Stade Saputo. Ouimette scored the winning goal. Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
With the season pretty much a bust in mid-May, management decided to give some young players a shot in the starting lineup and get them some big game experience. Defenders Karl Ouimette and Wandrille Lefevre became everyday players, while Calum Mallace, Maxim Tissot and rookie Eric Miller were given serious first team looks.
But Frank Klopas wasn’t just going to throw any youngster into the team to see what he could do. No, he prioritized homegrown players – graduates from the Academy and Montreal or Quebec natives.
A perfect example of this was the case of Santiago Gonzalez. The Impact dabbled with the hot shot young Uruguayan striker early in the season, some even calling him Marco Di Vaio’s replacement. However, they loaned Gonzalez back to Uruguay in August and signed Canadian Anthony Jackson-Hamel from the Academy. This is one of many cases of promotion from within and the roster now boasts eight Homegrown Players who have graduated from the Academy.
This season, Montreal was trying to look into the future, because lets be honest, the present isn’t so great.