After star turn for Canada U-20s, Maxime Crepeau close to Impact first team

MONTREAL – Canada Under-20 national team goalkeeper and Montreal Impact Academy product Maxime Crépeau lost a game Tuesday night, but a earning a pro contract in the near future might cheer him up.

The door for Crépeau to become the Impact’s third goalkeeper was flung wide open by Brad Stuver, the 32nd overall pick of the 2013 MLS SuperDraft, tweeting a farewell to Impact fans on Wednesday afternoon: “Just want to say thanks to all the #IMFC fans for the support the last few weeks! Good luck this year!” Stuver then went on to tweet that he would start looking for a new team.

Crépeau, a Montreal Academy product, put on a strong performance in the Canadian U-20 side’s 4-2 loss against the United States in the CONCACAF U-20 Championship quarterfinals, pulling off one tremendous save after another to prevent the Canucks from getting embarrassed. The 18-year-old's outing was so impressive that members of the Impact's coaching staff took notice.

“I couldn’t watch the game, but I was told by Philippe [Eullaffroy, assistant coach] and Youssef [Dahha, goalkeeper coach] that Crépeau had done really well,” head coach Marco Schällibaum told reporters on Wednesday. “We’ll see [about Crépeau], but I can’t tell you anything else. Take what I said, and you’ll figure out the rest.”

Schällibaum had dropped another hint about potentially signing Crépeau earlier in the week when he was asked why Stuver had not attended training.

“Stuver is home for personal reasons,” Schällibaum said on Tuesday, hours before the Canada-US game. “We'll be in touch with him tonight and tomorrow to see what happens with him, and tonight is the USA-Canada game. I give you A, you figure out B.”

Should he sign with the Impact, Crépeau would become the club’s fourth Homegrown player, joining Karl W. Ouimette, Wandrille Lefèvre and Maxim Tissot. The latter two signed with Montreal on Tuesday, while Ouimette became the first to do so back in June 2012.