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Thursday, April 7, 2011

Not all MLS idiosyncrasies bad for Winter

Wow, Martin Saric really let himself go

Aron Winter has been getting a crash course lately on the wacky world of Major League Soccer. Player trades, locker room access, four-hour-flight road trips and comical officiating are still novel for TFC’s Dutchman and will take time to get used to. Surely some days he must feel like he's managing in Bizarro Football but ironically, it is MLS's unique structure which may give Winter a chance at success quicker than if he had headed to a club in Europe.
The advantage for team re-building in MLS (if done right, Mo Johnston) is the lack of reliance on transfer fees and guaranteed contracts. If Winter had inherited a version of TFC in the Dutch 2nd Division, the first hurdle would have been trying to recoup transfer funds from the decrepit group of ballast players his predecessor had assembled in 2010. Winter, and Mariner as well, had the luxury of erasing the deck of unwanted players and it's a good thing because you only have to look at the players' post-TFC work history to assess their value on any transfer market. As we impatiently support through another rebuilding, imagine if we had to try and sell Mo Johnston's 2010 crop before being allowed to start again...
NICK GARCIA - Unattached
FUAD IBRAHIM - Unattached
MISTA - Unattached
MARTIN SARIC - Unattached
GABE GALA - Unattached
MAXIM USANOV - Unattached
RAIVIS HSCANOVICS - Signed with FK Jurmala (Latvia)
The list above illuminates two things, firstly the ineptitude in how Mo Johnston and Preki band-aided a squad of players who no one else wanted while promoting them as MLS-worthy. The second, how difficult the job could have been for Aron Winter & Co. if TFC had to honour contracts and deal in transfer markets like their international cousins. Winter may have trouble with some of MLS' strange behaviour but the league's lack of involvement in the world transfer market made his TFC rebuild a lot easier than if he had been saddled with 2010's far from valuable "assets" - and their poorly financed contracts.


  1. It's shocking when you put it out like that lol. 5 guys from the usual starting 11 last year, is that about right? Unreal.

  2. Case in point: Red Bulls 2009 vs Red Bulls 2010