Burlington goalie gets shot with TFC

STEVEN SANDOR, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 5:50 PM ET

Nils Binstock is getting a shot to be a hometown Red.

The Burlington, Ont. netminder, profiled in this space back in December, just got an invite to Toronto FC’s goalkeeping combine.

The combine goes Jan. 25-26 at Lamport Stadium.

Binstock just completed a stellar senior year at Iona College, where he will try and win at least a spot on the training-camp roster.

“I received an e-mail from (TFC goalkeeping coach) Mike Toshack and he invited me out,” said Binstock. “The team had been following my progress for the last couple of years.... I don’t know any of the other four or five keepers who will be invited out, but I think they could offer a contract to the best one.”

And Binstock has given Toshack a lot to think about; in his final NCAA season, he posted a stellar 0.66 GAA and a superb .849 GAA. That save percentage is a huge number for a soccer goaltender.

The combine will run before the scheduled opening of TFC’s regular training camp —and the Jan. 31 expiry of the current Collective Bargaining Agreement between MLS and its players’union. If there is no progress in talks, owners are in position to lock out the players on Feb. 1.

Even though TFC are stronger in goal than it is at any other position, with rookie-of-the-year Stefan Frei at No. 1 and Brian Edwards at backup, Binstock is hopeful that the Reds will keep three keepers in 2010. Once again, without a CBA in place, it’s hard to guess what kind of roster limits will exist in 2010.

“I think they are going to be carrying three,” said Binstock. “Last year, they ran into problems when Frei got hurt and Edwards had to jump in, and there was no back-up there. I know that D.C. United had a situation where both keepers were out and they needed to get an emergency replacement.”

But, even if Binstock doesn’t stick, the former Toronto Lynx and AB Copenhagen keeper knows getting this tryout would help him to get more trials at other clubs.

“I think it’s a definite positive; it’s a trial in a pro atmosphere,” he said. “It still looks good on a resume. Toronto FC is my hometown team. If things don’t work out, I want them to succeed, regardless.”

steven.sandor@sunmedia.ca

Videos

Photos