LAFC welcomed back their squad for the soft start of 2021 preseason this week. While the full team activities will get underway on Monday, the club released their preseason squad list to open camp, and the notable item is the relative lack of trialists.
From the looks of it, either three or four players will be on trial with the club. The three 2021 MLS SuperDraft picks, Danny Trejo, Alvaro Quezada, and CC Uche, are all in camp and action photos released by the club thus far show Trejo and Uche in action.
The fourth possible player on trial is Raheem Edwards, although he may not really be on trial. Edwards is both listed on the preseason roster and on the club’s roster page on their website, but they have not announced the Canadian signed a contract to this point. I asked the club for clarification on Wednesday but did not receive a response, so he could already be under contract, or he may be on trial with the draft picks. My hunch is that it’s the former, but who’s to say without confirmation.
Why are there no additional trialists? Almost certainly it’s down to the coronavirus pandemic. With players needing to quarantine before jumping into the fray, teams can’t invite a player to drop in like they usually do and if it doesn’t work out, cut him loose after a few days. So teams seem to be doing right by players and only asking them to join up if there’s a legitimate chance they could earn a contract, and not simply on a flier.
Both defender Marco Farfan and goalkeeper Tomas Romero seem likely to miss the start of training camp, both called up to camps with their respective youth national teams (Farfan the USA, Romero El Salvador) ahead of Concacaf Olympic qualifying in Guadalajara in just over two weeks’ time. Both players will return for preseason at some point, and the good news is they should be in a decent level of fitness when they join up.
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