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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Big deal for wee man

A three-year deal Joao?

"El MosQuito" will be buzzing around BMO Field for the foreseeable future as Toronto FC announced today that Joao Plata has signed a multi-year deal with the club. The dynamic yet diminutive Ecuadorian was often the only bright spark in a miserable first half of 2011 and his re-signing was considered as an off-season must in most supporters' eyes.
As per the secretive world of MLS contracts "terms of the deal were not disclosed" so it is yet to be determined if this deal is a full buyout of Plata's contract with original club LDU Quito, or, as reported in many circles, some type of co-ownership deal. Surely the details will emerge soon but for now, most TFC supporters will feel happy, and relieved, that a player who is considered to be an integral part of the club's future will remain in Toronto.
Of course, to stay on track after a breakout 2011, Plata will need to keep working hard to avoid any sophomore slump in a league where he will no longer be a surprise. Expectations will also be higher for Platita from fans and coaches alike in 2012 and how he handles such pressures will be the difference between success and failure. One thing that Plata did show in his first year that will surely help is a supreme confidence in his own abilities.
A deal not announced but one that is being anticipated with equally bated breath is for similar 2011 loanee Richard Eckersley. There is no shortage of goodwill between the player and the club but many feel that the defender's parent club Burnley will play financial hardball until the end of the European transfer window. Some defensive cover may indeed be on its way however as rumours that Chilean wingback Miguel Aceval is on the verge of joining The Reds are heating further today. With the MLS SuperDraft a mere day away, TFC 2012 is slowly taking shape.

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