Crowded House in Casa Grande

Pre-season friendlies are under way for the Whitecaps. For the international hopefuls, it's a crowded house in Casa Grande. - Jennifer Stewart

The Vancouver Whitecaps may be playing some warm-ups in Casa Grande, but for the international players right now, the "Big House" is more than a little crowded.

The Vancouver Whitecaps currently hold a total of 11 international slots - with all of them filled: (Abdallah, Diouf, Leveron, Lewis, Mattocks, Miller, Mitchell, O'Brien,Ousted, Reo-Coker, Mezquida, and Fernandez).

That leaves Daigo Kobayashi, Solomon Kwambe, and Michael Calderon (draftee) not only battling for a spot on the roster, but hoping that the Caps will be able to swing a trade deal or two in exchange for additional international slots. Chicago, San Jose, and Kansas City each have an MLS high of four unused international slots, so perhaps we'll see something involving those sides.

Such a move could take the form of a player trade, swapping allocation money for an international spot, or offering future picks for the same.

Of course, there's the recent arrangement between the Caps and USL PRO side Charleston Battery that also comes into play. The Caps have agreed to loan a minimum of four players to the Battery in the course of the United Soccer Leagues season. Conveniently for the Caps, international players out on loan don't count against the international player limit.

There are possibilities for the internationals looking to secure a roster spot, but at the moment the odds aren't exactly in their favour.

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