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Former Man Utd youngster Eckersley excited about Toronto FC chance

Toronto FC loan signing Richard Eckersley says he is ready to go if he happens to be included in the first team squad for this weekend's clash with Columbus Crew at home.

The 22-year old former Manchester United defender is on loan with the Canadian club from English Championship outfit Burnley and is excited about his MLS opportunity.

"If called upon, I'm ready to play," said Eckersley.

"I know what to do. If [head coach Aron Winter] decides to play me, I'm ready to play."

As for his fitness and position, the Salford-born full-back was unsure if he could the distance against the Crew but admitted he isn't bothered where he plays.

"You don't even know how match fit you are until you play in games - that's where you get your match fitness," he said. "In training you get a certain amount of fitness, but it's really on the pitch when you're playing 11-v-11 where you get your real match fitness.

"I'll play anywhere as long as I'm playing football."

And the man who got him to the club, TFC director of player development Paul Mariner, who coached him at Plymouth Argyle is expecting big things from the former Red Devil.

"He's got two good feet, he can actually play right back and left back," Mariner said.

"He was brought up with Sir Alex at Manchester United and he plays just the way that Aron and Bob [de Klerk, assistant coach] want to play ... building up from the back."

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