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Toronto FC goalie Joe Bendik questionable for weekend game in Philadelphia

04/30/2015 02:00 EDT | Updated 08/08/2015 03:59 EDT
TORONTO - Toronto FC is facing another defensive challenge this weekend with an injury to starting goalie Joe Bendik.

Coach Greg Vanney said Bendik felt something in his foot in Sunday's 2-0 win in Orlando and is questionable for Saturday's visit to Philadelphia. But barring a sudden recovery, it seems unlikely Bendik will play.

Waiting in the wings is Toronto backup Chris Konopka, a former Philadelphia player who has started just two MLS games in the last five seasons. Vanney said he had not decided who would be on the bench if he needed another 'keeper.

"It's nothing serious," Vanney said of Bendik's injury. "We don't see it as taking too terribly long ... If it's not this week, we're optimistic for next week."

The game against Philadelphia (1-5-3) is the penultimate stop on Toronto's marathon season-opening road trip due to renovations at BMO Field. After a midweek visit to Montreal for an Amway Canadian Championship game, Toronto (2-4-0) finally gets to play at home May 10 when it hosts the Houston Dynamo.

Bendik has been a constant in goal for Toronto the last three seasons, with 66 league starts. But the defenders ahead of him this season have been changing due to injury.

Toronto defenders have missed a total of 15 games this season already through injury or suspension with Mark Bloom, Steven Caldwell, Warren Creavalle, Justin Morrow, Damien Perquis, Clement Simonin and Eriq Zavaleta all sidelined at some point.

Caldwell (Achilles) and Bloom (quad) are unavailable again this weekend.

Midfielder Benoit Cheyrou (one game through injury) and striker Luke Moore (one game via suspension) are the only other Toronto players to miss action this season for reasons other than for international duty.

Vanney, however, believes the team is on the right path in preventing injury.

"The number of sessions that players are missing is a fraction of what it has been over the last couple of years," he said after practice Thursday.

Vanney, meanwhile, said he had spoken to Perquis, the Polish international defender who was fined an undisclosed amount by the league for simulation in the Orlando game.

Perquis went down clutching his face after Orlando's Bryan Rochez shoved him in the chest.

While not excusing Perquis' actions, Vanney suggested Rochez should have been sanctioned for "taking an aggressive, assaulting position on another player."

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