TFC Roundup: A Recap of Recent Revelations

A look at recent Toronto FC happenings in the last few days and how it will affect the season ahead
by Sonja Missio   |   Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Red Dawn Rising - column on Toronto FC (TFC) & the Toronto Ontario soccer scene

The 2013 season is almost upon us and Toronto FC is in full preparation mode as it anticipates its first game against the Vancouver Whitecaps on March 2.

And while that may be very well and good for the team, “preparation mode” means that this writer does not have a lot to work with. Right now, the team is in a self-made limbo as it lays the groundwork for the upcoming season.

In other words, nothing is happening while everything is happening, all at once. And as the team works behind the scenes, fans must remain patient to see what kind of phoenix will rise from the ashes that is known as the 2012 season.

I too am waiting for this phoenix, which leads me to the topic for this week’s article. Originally, I was going to take this lull in Toronto FC news to write a piece comparing Michel Foucault’s Histoire de la sexualité to Toronto FC’s playing style. But the stranger on the subway I used as a soundboard was unimpressed, so, instead, I am going to just give you a recap of what has been going on in Toronto the past couple of weeks.

For better and for worse.

Joao Plata remember him?! has left Toronto FC

Toronto FC announced last Wednesday that it acquired a second round pick in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft from Real Salt Lake in exchange for forward Joao Plata.

I had completely forgotten about Plata’s existence with Toronto FC until the announcement of his trade popped up in my Twitter timeline (plug! Follow me at: @sonjamissio). It seems so long ago now that he announced himself on loan to Ecuador’s LDU Quito via Twitter.

This may seem like a normal move in today’s social media savvy world, but it was also (apparently) the way he told Toronto FC as well. That’s right. The team (again, apparently) was made aware of the loan via a tweet. The move – both the way he announced it and the physical relocation – was not handled well on all accounts, so hopefully Plata is happier with his new team.

Eric Hassli is leaving has also left

Columnist Sonja Missio in a Hassli jersey - Courtesty Sona MissioWhen I first started to write my article, Hassli was on his way out from Toronto FC. When it came time to edit my article, Hassli was traded to Dallas for a 2014 conditional 2nd round pick.

Toronto is stating that, “Eric requested a move for family related reasons,” however it is quite apparent that he just wasn’t happy in Toronto. Hopefully, like with Plata, his new team will be a better match.

And while this has cleared up a DP position and some funds for Toronto, I have to say, I’m a little annoyed I wasn’t consulted on the move. I mean, what am I suppose to do with that hidious thing on the left now?

Pat Onstad is also Onstaff.

Hassli and Plata may be out, but Onstad is in. It seems like TFC’s President Kevin Payne is clearing house of Mariner’s people and replacing them with his own.

And I do mean “his own.”

Last Tuesday, Toronto FC announced Onstad, a retired Canadian national goalkeeper, as the new chief scout and manager of football partnerships. Onstad, like manager Ryan Nelsen, had previously worked with Payne before at D.C. United.

Essentially, Payne is turning TFC into his own Old Boys’ Club. And while usually I am against nepotism, it is nice of him to include a Canadian.

Kyle Bekker earns his first international cap

Speaking about Canadian internationals, we have a new one: Kyle Bekker.

Bekker – along with his new Toronto teammates Ashtone Morgan, Doneil Henry, Matt Stinson and Canada’s captain Terry Dunfield – was recently called up for an international friendly against Denmark. On paper, the game was a disaster, as the inexperienced Canadian side lost 4 – 0 to the Danes. But Bekker had an impressive game and received some great international exposure. He was also one of the top performers on the field against the United States last week.

Though still a young and growing player, Bekker is already showing a lot of potential for his national team, giving Toronto FC fans something to look forward to.

Also, me and Bekker may be taking the same train to BMO this summer, as he lives one train stop away from me.

The Return of the “Home Opener…” not being at home.

And finally, on March 9 Toronto FC will play its “home opener” against Sporting Kansas (or, in other words, I have a little less than a month to buy a new jersey).

Anyway, I say “home opener” because the game is not scheduled to be played at BMO Field, but rather, at the Skydome (or Rogers Centre).

Though a point of debate among Toronto FC fans, the move does make sense as BMO Field, an outdoor stadium, is not winter-ready. And March in Southern Ontario can range anywhere from 20°C to -20°C (60°F to -4°F).

General tickets for the match go on sale Feb. 14 and make the perfect Valentine’s Day gift. Ahem: hint, hint.

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That’s the round so the last couple of weeks. And, if you are interested in reading my paper, “TFC: Toronto Foucault Club,” I’ll be more than happy to oblige!

Sonja MISSIO

Nationality:
Canada
College:
Univ. of Guelph, Univ. of W. Ontario, Brock University
Club Domestic:
Toronto FC
Club Foreign:
Udinese
Supported Udinese since birth, TFC was her own stupid decision; writing on her masochistic relationship with soccer started after. Doomed as a Canadian - Friulano - Swiss - Filipina. Searching for Juventini actually from Turin and running for FIFA Prez.
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