Julian De Guzman looks set to miss Canada’s opening match of the Gold Cup here in Detroit with a calf injury.

“He trained today and he trained a little bit yesterday but it’s still a little sore,” confirmed coach Stephen Hart.

He added: “I have to talk to my medical staff this evening and look over the reports before we make any decisions.”

However, The Score has learned De Guzman is telling people he likely won’t start tomorrow’s game. A further clue came while watching Canada go through their training session at Ford Field.

Although the media were only able to witness the first 15 minutes of Canada’s session today there was enough time to see the 30-year-old line up in the midfield alongside some other reserves against a central triangle of Atiba Hutchinson, Terry Dunfield and Dwayne De Rosario. Josh Simpson and Will Johnson operated in the wide areas.

Those five players started the match against Ecuador last Wednesday in Toronto and performed well for the first 45 minutes until De Guzman replaced Dunfield. At the time it appeared Hart was rewarding the Vancouver player with the start after a good season but it now appears that he could be about to take De Guzman’s place in the midfield when the game kicks off at 8pm on Tuesday.

Dunfield told me after training that he doesn’t expect to find out if he is starting until 90 minutes before the game tomorrow, but will be ready: “I love playing for Canada and have had a brilliant time (in the camp) so far.”

Another player who was full of smiles was Ali Gerba who operated as the lone central striker in what looked to be the first team at training and impressed many including the coaching staff.

“He looked really sharp,” said Hart, who could raise some eyebrows and play Gerba as the main target man and leave Simeon Jackson on the bench as he looks for a genuine outlet at the top of a 4-2-3-1.

The Montreal Impact striker, who had been held back from the camp last week for fitness reasons, is now injury-free and available to start and told me that playing in a lone role up front can be difficult but is one he enjoys.

Should Gerba start and Jackson miss out it will certainly be a surprise to many of the Canadian fans making their way across the border for the game. One thing that shouldn’t surprise them is the system they will play as Stephen Hart explained to me last week.

Kristian Jack

Comments (6)

  1. Well, feel bad for De Guzman, but I’m honestly happy that Dunfield is playing instead. I thought that he played far better than De Guzman, goal or not.

  2. Who’s going to start in goal? I hope it’s Borjan!

  3. he was out played by Dunfield for team Canada and Sturgis for TFC, he should consider a move back to La Liga if anyone will take him at this point

  4. I think that nagging knee injury is really killing JDG’s career.

    His mobility has be extremely reduced over the past couple of years.

  5. TFC is a joke. My girlfriend works with JDG’s girlfriend at right to play and she’s been talking about jonathan de guzman being in toronto for the past few weeks and them all going out partying every night. Why is JDG out and about with his girlfriend and brother but can’t make it to practice? TFC needs to rebuild to have a serious shot at the playoffs.

  6. hey rick…i happen to be JDG gf…WTF are you talking about, either your talking shit or your gf is..get your facts straight before you throw them out into the world….this is how rumors fuckin start…he missed practise 1 time cause he had a ridiculous fever….tell your gf to stop talking shit too..

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