Richard Eckersley and Eric Hassli.

Hassli To Join Toronto Friday

Photo: Once a foe, Eric Hassli (right) expected to join Toronto on Friday.

Toronto FC returned to training on Thursday ahead of Saturday’s match against Houston Dynamo at BMO Field (4 p.m. ET on GOLTV Canada).

The players enjoyed a couple of days away from the Kia Training Ground in Downsview after the Reds had played 11 games – including a friendly – in just over a month. The stretch of meaningful matches ended with a three-game MLS winning streak for Toronto.

Eric Hassli

Newly acquired forward and designated player Eric Hassli was not at training on Thursday. The Frenchman is expected to arrive at Downsview on Friday morning. That’s when Reds’ medical staff will examine his injured ankle to decide if he is cleared to face Houston.

Hassli suffered the injury playing for Vancouver on July 14 in Chicago. His right foot was initially placed in a walking boot as a precautionary measure, but test results returned negative and it's been reported that the soft cast has been removed.

The Backline

Toronto parted ways with defender Miguel Aceval on Thursday. The Chilean last saw MLS action on May 5 in a 2-0 loss to D.C. United, appearing in the last of his five league games. He will be remembered by most for a free kick goal against Santos Laguna in a 1-1 draw in the Champions League semifinals.

Fullback Jeremy Hall continues to recover from a left hamstring strain. His last match involvement was in the thrilling 3-2 win over Vancouver on July 11. The American was substituted after 29 minutes due to injury.


Speaking of fullbacks, Costa Rican Lemark Hernandez is still on trial with Toronto. Also extending his stay with the Reds is goalkeeper Freddy Hall. The Bermuda international was absent from training Thursday but is expected to continue his trial.

The Days Ahead

Reds return to training Friday with media availability. Toronto FC TV will be on hand with the latest interviews and previews on looking ahead to the Houston match on Saturday.

On Monday from 11 a.m., Toronto will host another Sport Chek community practice at the Kia Training Ground in Downsview Park that’s open to the public. The next day will be the eve of another CONCACAF Champions League campaign that starts Wednesday, August 1 at 8 p.m. versus CD Aguila of El Salvador at BMO Field.