Garde: With Mancosu hurt, other options haven't shown enough in training

MONTREAL -- Remi Garde at his press conference explained on Tuesday why he has not been using several Montreal Impact players, including striker Matteo Mancosu and midfielder Raheem Edwards.

After explaining Mancosu was not available due to injury, he revealed why forwards Anthony Jackson-Hamel and Dominic Oduro weren't considered to take the Italian's spot.

“What I have seen in training, it’s not good enough for me to think that’s someone who will shift the balance of the game,” Garde said before practice on Tuesday. “When you’re not playing, when you have a player that is not being used much, the best way is through training. The coach should go into the locker room saying, wow, this player showed me today if I bring him in the team he will bring a lot to the team.”

Jackson-Hamel has played only 103 minutes this season and Oduro only five under Garde's watch. The two were both regular contributors last season under former Impact coach Mauro Biello.

Mancosu did not play in Montreal’s 4-1 loss in Atlanta on Saturday, and has been limited to a five-minute appearance late in a 5-3 loss to LAFC a week earlier in the past six games since he was sidelined by a calf injury.

“Matteo was not 100 percent available for that game and you know how much I appreciate a number of his qualities that really helped us early in the season,” Garde said. “I regret that he’s injured.”

The Impact have lost four straight, and are in ninth place in the Eastern Conference at 2-6-0 with six points in eight games.`

Meanwhile, Garde suggested personal reasons have been behind Edwards' absence. Garde and the Impact acquired Edwards and Jukka Raitala in the trade that sent Laurent Ciman to LAFC, but the versatile 22-year-old has not been used in the past three games. He started only in Montreal's home opener, and has come off the bench once in six games since he scored in the Impact’s 3-2 loss at Columbus on March 10.

“I have a lot of frustration with Raheem’s case,” Garde said. “His case is much different, I don’t know if he wants to say more about it. I think he has just gone through a very difficult period that was not really related to football, if I understand it well, and I hope we will find a Raheem completely invested in the group for the Impact.

“The group needs him, everybody likes him a lot here, but I think that he is someone who has to change his behavior and understand that professional football is a job with demands and a manner of carrying yourself. But it’s clear that we miss Raheem’s qualities, which we saw during the first two weeks.”