Two slightly different versions of the same article by Dean McNulty of the Toronto Sun have surfaced this morning. The first was in the Toronto Sun, while the other ran in the London Free Press, hometown of TFC Supplemental pick Tyler Hemming. Hemming has survived yet another obstacle, and will remain with the team as they move to Bradenton, Florida. The Hartwick College star, has yet to sign a contract with Toronto FC at this point. Mo Johnston has changed his tune, and has said he will now be willing to use the number one allocation on Conor Casey.
York University product, and open tryout survivor Jamaal Smith, has apparently been recalled to the team, and is also expected to be in Florida next week.
Bill Lankof of the Sun, takes a shot at Toronto FC this morning. Basically claims Toronto FC have been invisible. He has a point in a way. I mean aside from die hard fans, there are many who have no clue about the players on the team. Most of the discussion in the media has been about ticket sales and the like, with little focus on who and what to expect this coming year. I know of a few season ticket holders, that honestly couldn't tell you one name on the Toronto FC roster. One of them was actually convinced TFC had drafted Freddy Adu - instead of Maurice Edu. I couldn't change his mind, and he still believes I'm wrong. A few others believed MLS was an upstart league until I set them straight. All have unrealistic expectations of what MLS is all about, mainly due to the Beckham signing. They wonder why Alessandro del Piero, Luis Figo, or Michael Owen (or in some cases all three) haven't been signed yet. This level of expectation has been known to hurt MLS clubs in the past, the best example being New York, where the fan base has dwindled since 1996. One advantage Toronto does have however, is the tidy 20,000 seat Soccer Specific Stadium (although if it were truly "soccer specific" the field would be natural grass) from the get go. Here's the link: http://torontosun.canoe.ca/Sports/Columnists/Lankhof_Bill/2007/03/03/3690087.html
An article in the Toronto Star today, mentions players in contention for the U-20 National team participating with Toronto FC in training this winter - Stephen Lumley, Andrea Lombardo, AJ Gray and Gabe Gala. http://www.thestar.com/Sports/article/187794