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Toronto FC hopes to get some reinforcements ahead of derby match with Montreal

Struggling Toronto FC could have some welcome reinforcements Sunday when it returns to action after a three-week layoff.

Forward Lorenzo Insigne, captain Michael Bradley and fellow midfielder Victor Vazquez were all part of the Toronto training session that was open to the media Tuesday. All three have missed chunks of the MLS season through injury.

“We’re pretty fortunate at this point of time … a couple of guys we haven’t seen in some time rejoining us,” said general manager Jason Hernandez.

“I think we can see a version of this team that we all were hoping to see and are looking forward to seeing,” he added.

Toronto can also call on two new forwards in former German youth international Prince Owusu and South African international Cassius Mailula.

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Owusu, 26, arrived on a free transfer after spending last season with SSV Jahn Regensburg in the German second tier. Mailula, 22, was signed from South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns FC.

Insigne last saw action July 1, exiting at halftime of a 1-0 loss to visiting Real Salt Lake. The 32-year-old Italian star has missed the last five games with a calf injury.

Bradley has not played since April 8. The 36-year-old eventually underwent a procedure in May in London on his hamstring. The surgery was done by Dr. Ernest Schilders, considered a world-leading expert in adductor and groin problems in athletes.

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The 36-year-old Vazquez last played March 25 in a scoreless draw at San Jose, sidelined by a foot injury that prompted him to return to his native Spain to see a specialist.

Toronto hosts CF Montreal (9-12-2) on Sunday at BMO Field.

Toronto (3-11-10) has lost its last eight outings in all competitions — failing to score in its last six games — and is winless in 11 (0-8-3). It has won just once in its last 17 games (1-12-4) in all competitions.

Montreal last played July 26 losing 1-0 to visiting D.C. United in Leagues Cup play. Sitting in 10th place in the Eastern Conference, one point out of the playoffs,

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Montreal has won just once in its last seven games (1-4-2) in all competitions and has been blanked five times during that run.

&© 2023 The Canadian Press

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