TORONTO — Spanish playmaker Victor Vazquez, dealing with a back issue, skipped training Saturday but will travel with Toronto FC to Mexico.
The MLS champions leave Sunday via charter for Monterrey, the site of Tuesday’s second leg of their CONCACAF Champions League quarter-final against Tigres. Toronto won Wednesday’s first leg 2-1 on the strength of Jonathan Osorio’s 89th-minute goal at BMO Field.
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“Victor is day-to-day. We”ll see how he feels,” Toronto coach Greg Vanney said after TFC practised indoors Saturday. “It’s some back tightness that leading to some nerve (issues) so we’re just trying to loosen him up. He’s feeling marginally better. It’s how much can we gain over the next couple of days to try and get him ready.
“We weren’t going to throw him out there today and have him train lose any progress that we’ve been able to make. We got some work on him (Saturday) morning and we’ll see how he progresses (Sunday) but he’s going to go (to Mexico) and hopefully he’ll be ready to give us some (playing) time.
The back issue forced Vazquez to leave in the 53rd minute of Toronto’s season-opening loss to Columbus on March 3. The Spaniard, who played in Mexico for Cruz Azul before joining Toronto, came on in the 79th minute of the midweek Tigres game.
Toronto striker Jozy Altidore also did not figure in the portion of Saturday’s practice open to the media. Vanney said the U.S. international was following his normal routine post-game, which includes some individual work. “He’s fine,” the coach added.
Toronto has a bye in MLS play this weekend. Tigres hosted Club Tijuana on Saturday night in Mexican league play.
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Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press