One up, another two down: Montreal Impact forced to juggle backline again due to injury, suspension

Marco Schallibaum

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USA TODAY Sports

MONTREAL – While Alessandro Nesta is fit to play alongside Matteo Ferrari on Saturday against the New England Revolution (2:30 pm ET; MLS Live), suspensions and injuries are forcing the Montreal Impact staff to experiment around the two Italian defenders.

Head coach Marco Schällibaum confirmed on Thursday that left back Jeb Brovsky would be unavailable for 10 to 14 days due to a broken toe. The ever-present Brovsky has logged 2,610 minutes of play this season, more than any other Montreal field player.

“He could have played despite the pain, but then he would have been out for the rest of the season,” Schällibaum told reporters. “With somewhere between 10 days and two weeks of rest, he’ll come back into the team more safely. That’s the choice we made.

“The objective, if you do the math, is for him to be ready for Toronto [on Oct. 26] and, most of all, for the playoffs afterwards.”

Maxim Tissot will thus step in for Brovsky at left back, his natural position, after two recent substitute appearances at left midfield, which included a game-tying goal against the Chicago Fire on Sept. 28.

“He’s going to play,” Schällibaum said. “We don't have many solutions, but he’s deserved it with good substitute appearances. One hundred percent, he’ll play. If nothing else comes up, he’ll start the game. I also hope he does a lot on the offensive side, with his very good left foot. We also need that for Saturday. It’s going to be a very important weapon to win that game.”

As far as right back is concerned, the Impact have known since the 32nd minute of their 1-0 loss in Houston on Friday, when a Hassoun Camara foul on Brad Davis earned the Impact defender a fifth caution this season, that a change would be required due to yellow card accumulation.

“We've got options. We tried some of them out today, including Davy Arnaud and Karl Ouimette. We’ll look at these two guys, and we’ll make a decision,” said assistant coach Mauro Biello, who went on to mention the versatile Wandrille Lefèvre as a third option.

Olivier Tremblay covers the Montreal Impact for MLSsoccer.com.