POWER RANKINGS: Gareth Wheeler on how Canadian MLS teams stack up in 2022
It's early days, but with MLS pre-season now under full swing, let's take a look at how each of the three Canadian teams stack up, shall we?
3. Toronto FC
Coming in at number three, we will go with Toronto FC.
The reports coming out of camp is that Bob Bradley is getting a tune out of these players already. They needed some discipline and accountability, and based on some of the rumoured moves that are being made, if you're half-committed, if there are any off-field concerns, you're not going to be a part of this group.
Bradley is establishing the grounds for doing something special. But, there are a couple issues coming out of the gate: Insigne not available until July; Akinola and Priso working their way back from injuries; and, they're extremely thin at full-back positions. In their last pre-season match, they were playing Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty and Jacob Shaffelburg at right- and left-back. These are two player that aren't known for their defensive accumen.
But, I like their moves: Insigne, Jimenez, Salcedo – these are moves that make sense and are going to start forming the new core of Toronto FC.
2. Vancouver Whitecaps FC
I just need to see more.
I need to understand how head coach Vanni Sartini is going to take this club forward, how they're going to evolve. I don't think it's operating from a position of strength when you lose your first-choice goalkeeper in Maxime Crepeau, though.
Is Brian White going to have the same kind of campaign he had last year? He was absolutely on flames, and all eyes will be on him.
How about the shape of this team?
Did they overachieve last year?
I think there are some significant questions that remain to be answered by the Vancouver Whitecaps.
1. CF Montreal
Coming in at number one is CF Montreal!
Alistair Johnston is a great pick-up; the fact that Rudy Camacho is back with this group plays to their strengths, too.
I keep saying it – I still think they need another dynamic attacking player in that group, but CF Montreal? There's no other place I can put them other than to top my power rankings at the top of the season.