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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Yorkies Cards 2011 - Pack 8

We are nearing the end of this elaborate gag. It's been a journey of laughs and "what the hell were we thinking" type moments. With Champs League just around the corner, we will finally be resuming our regular actual football focus shortly. Hey, what does a 'down homer', a model, and Doneil Henry have in common? They're all in this pack! You'll find Ante Jazic, Adrian Cann and, er, Doneil Henry in the latest contribution to the madness.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

LETTERS FROM CAMP: Reds serve up a BK whopper

Footballs? Pancakes? Boobies?

With just a week to go before "The Biggest Game In TFC History" (TM), The Reds continue in the group stage of The Mickey Mouse Cup. Tonight's opponent are Swedish also-rans BK Hacken of the Allsvenskan, marking the second time Toronto faces "The Hedge" in its history. It also marks a rare chance to trot out every Swedish stereotype and pun we can muster as we follow the match. IKEA allen keys at the ready... let's play meatball... er, football...

- The always fun MLS online stream kicks in just as "O Canada" starts up, leaving those watching back in Sweden angry that their anthem was muted. Sorry for the racism you three.
2' - Ty Harden back in the line-up tonight. He is the IKEA "Billy" bookcase of defenders. It does in a pinch but you know you need something better.
8' - Milos Kocic getting a chance to claim the # 1 spot tonight. BK Hacken doing their best early to give him practice. One way traffic - Volvo traffic - so far.
11' - I know this is coming from Disney World but does the cameraman have to be sitting on The Teacups ride? Online nausea.
14' - BK Hacken yellow card as Ashtone Morgan takes boot to the face. Dirty Viking.
18' - Torsten Frings playing in the conservative old sweeper role. Assumed that the off-season defensive makeover would fix that. Nope. Perhaps an aforementioned bookcase the reason.
23' - Miguel Aceval slams a Swede into the ground. Yellow card. Wussy non-Viking.
33' - MLS commentator quote of the match: "Free kick to the team on foreign soil..." may need an atlas.
35' - Frings cracks the woodwork from a long-distance free kick - Ryan Johnson caught offside trying to put in the rebound
44' - After sustained pressure, Luis Silva dummies a pass across Hacken's goal which Ryan Johnson slots home easily. TORONTO FC 1 - BK HACKEN 0
45'+ - Wondering if the Swedish Chef knows how to make a halftime Herring Butty

47' - Lingenberries were a bad idea.
52' - Danny Koevermans picking up a minor knock for the second game in a row
54' - Eric Avila, Koevermans and Reggie Lambe all miss putting TFC up by two
57' - A very dodgy penalty decision gives Hacken's Drugge the chance to level the match with a PK which he does with ease. TORONTO FC 1 - BK HACKEN 1
62' - Hour into the match and not a hint of a Swedish Bikini Team
67' - Removing Harden in the second half allowing Frings to play his most useful role in the centre of the park. Just saying.
70' - Second half much like Sweden's most hilarious comedy film... not funny.
73' - Kocic has shown more rust tonight than Stefan Frei did against Orlando City
77' - BK Hacken coaches yelling random "jorgi, borgi borgi, djunp dorp, dorp dorp dorp" at players. It's such a romantic language.
85' - Not a bad way to apply for a job as trialist Moises Orozco (P. Coltrane) scores a cracker for TFC in the midst of being fouled from behind. TORONTO FC 2 - BK HACKEN 1 (Awesome nickname courtesy of Waking The Red)
88' - Nick Soolsma has had cat scratch fever in the last 5 minutes
90' - Soolsma makes meatballs out of Hacken's defence before feeding Joao Plata a pass which the tiny dancer pops into goal. TORONTO FC 3 - BK HACKEN 1
90'+ - Back to the drawing board for Hacken. The drawing board of course being a set of IKEA instructions

LETTERS FROM CAMP: The Un-Mighty Bouch

And then there was one.                       Photo: Toronto FC

In a bit of an unexpected move, Toronto FC announced that they have waived midfielder Elbekay Bouchiba. The experienced holding mid joined The Reds a year ago as part of a Dutch trio of signings alongside Nick Soolsma and Javier Martina. Bouchiba's signing last year had some guessing that he was a built-in replacement for the underachieving Julian de Guzman but a preseason ACL tear saw the tough-looking Dutch-Moroccan miss the entire season. With a year away from the game, a medium-sized contract and an international roster spot hanging over his head, his dismissal isn't a shock but perhaps the timing, one week before the club's first competitive match, is.
The Reds patted themselves on the back yesterday by announcing that the SkyDome was "sold out" for next week's CCL match against Davy Knickers and The Boyz. Capped at 43,500 - the match will of course break all previous TFC attendance records but how many bums avec seats is yet to be seen. The usual number of scalper-held tickets along with large swathes of "corporate client" seats could still create some empty spaces but no matter what, it will still make Argos management and fans double-blue with envy. That is of course if the usual Toronto sports-fan habit of showing up a half-hour late can be avoided.
Not really shocking for anyone who watched him struggle against Orlando City but Geovanny Caicedo says he is having difficulty with the North American game. In a surprisingly candid interview with MLS en EspaƱol (article here... but in aforementioned foreign language) the hulking Ecuadorian admits to be surprised over the level of physicality and crashing on a MLS backline. It is a bit surprising considering Caicedo's frame but it may be a while before we see the best of the defender.

Monday, February 27, 2012

THE STARTING 11: Ways The Oscars would have differed if TFC produced the show

First of all, these statues should be in a 4-3-3

We know that many of our readers were far more likely to be watching highlights of Toronto FC vs. Orlando City on an eternal online loop, but for some, the biggest show of the weekend took place last night. Yes, the biggest thing to hit Hollywood since Chad Barrett, the annual Academy Awards, was held on Sunday with all the usual glitz and glamour in tow. Personally I will never forgive The Academy for shunning Scott Baio's 1982 classic "Zapped" but you know... it's all too political. While watching the televisual NyQuil that was the Billy Crystal helmed Oscars, we couldn't help but wonder how it would be different if TFC were producing the show...

11. "Bridesmaids" actually turns out to be a documentary about Toronto FC's playoff history
10. Award winners are escorted off-stage by Scotts' Turf Girls
9. Despite critical acclaim, "Tinker Tailor Keeper Frei" fails to win a single award
8. Cirque Du Soleil's artistic interlude replaced by non-union Quebecois circus performers kicking footballs at Pizza Pizza boxes
7. "The Dichio Song" wins for Best Original Score
6. Instead of the Best Short category split between "Animated" and "Live Action", now divided into "Ecuadorian" and "Bermudian"
5. Show features 57 minute long homage to 1970's Dutch cinema
4. Dog from "The Artist" attacked from above by "Bitchy the Hawk"
3. Best Foreign Language award mistakenly given to a clip of an Aron Winter press conference in English
2. Controversial Collin Samuel nip-slip
1. Best Supporting Butty

There is no justice...

Saturday, February 25, 2012

LETTERS FROM CAMP: "It's just a friendly after all..."

Forza Violas!

Toronto FC started their official preseason friendly schedule tonight in the group stage of the Walt Disney World Pro Soccer Classic. The opponents were none other than the local club and USL Pro Division Champions Orlando City. Since, like TFC, we are shaking off preseason rust, here are some shoddy highlights instead of a post-match report from tonight's action...
- Orlando City's nifty purple kits solidify their claim to fame as "The Fiorentina of Central Florida"
- TFC's new Ecuadorian defender Geovanny Caicedo looks like a complete beast... and that was just in the pre-match waiting line
- Sadly the national anthem of Disney World was ignored. Racists.
- The aforementioned Ecuadorian beast looks a little shaky on the defensive communication and gets caught crashing and banging giving Orlando a PK. John "You May Have Heard of My Brother" Rooney converts giving The Lions a lead
- No word if John Rooney can afford hairplugs on his USL salary
- After having his left foot prowess questioned by the "top-notch" MLS commentators, TFC's Miguel Aceval curls a free kick home via a deflection making it level
- Danny Koevermans taken off in precaution after a seemingly minor injury. Soolsma comes on to please fans of non-racist cats while highlighting The Reds' apparent lack of depth at striker
- Former Wolves manager Mick McCarthy in attendance at Orlando... or it's possibly The Muppets' Sam The Eagle
- Richard Eckersley is like every Englishman visiting Florida - he's sweaty, red and wearing a football shirt
- After some TFC defensive laziness, some dude on Orlando (sue me) slots it home to give The Lions the surprise lead
- Quick in reply, Das Kapitan Torsten Frings does what he has yet to do in regular season with TFC... score a goal. Level at two.
- Aron Winter celebrates the Frings goal with 7 subs at once, bringing most of TFC Academy into the match
- Stefan Frei making big save after big save. Stop wearing # 24 Stefan - you're a # 1
- "C" grades down the TFC roster apart from The Goalblerone tonight
- They may yet have been given an MLS expansion place but I'd take Orlando City over New York Cosmos II any day

Yorkies Cards 2011 - Pack 7

We are super ultra pleased how many people have liked what we've been doing here with these cards. However I'm disappointed that we haven't done enough to warrant a 'cease-and-desist' but then we weren't trying to be too offensive. Speaking of offensive, this pack includes Alex Bunbury's offspring, as well as Terry Dunfield and the least important trophy anywhere, the Trillium Cup.

Friday, February 24, 2012

A Mickey Mouse tournament after all!

Sweet pair of Hackens!

It is one of North America's most fiercely contested, rodent-related soccer tournaments in history. FIFA ranks it in the Top 250 theme park-based football competitions of the 21st Century. Yes, it's time to get off the teacups and take the monorail over to the Walt Disney World Pro Soccer Classic. Rolls right of the tongue.
In its third year of existence, the "Classic" once again invites a host of clubs for a preseason tournament in the Orlando sun with the winner leaving with untold riches. Well, at least a trophy with Sport Goofy and coupons for some funnel cakes. The tournament is also Toronto FC's only competitive preseason action so we thought we'd have a quick look at the teams our Reds will face. This should help while squinting your eyes at MLS's internet feed.
ORLANDO CITY - February 25th, 6PM
STAR PLAYER: John "Wayne's Brother" Rooney
POSSIBLE FLORIDA TRIALIST: Anyone from Epcot's Brazil pavilion
CELEBRITY SUPPORTERS: Chip 'n Dale; Scrooge McDuck; Tony Orlando (Dawn pending)
BIO: The current USL Pro Division Champions (North America's 3rd Tier) had a tremendously successful and well attended first year in Orlando after moving from Austin, Texas. Already out-drawing Tampa Bay Mutiny and Miami Fusion combined, Orlando City are making a case for future MLS consideration... or a home for D.C. United to move to when their next four stadium proposals fail.
BK HACKEN - February 28th, 6PM
STAR PLAYER: Matias Ostberg
CELEBRITY SUPPORTERS: 1/4 of ABBA; extras from the Thor movie; Volvo dealers
BIO: Finally a chance to use all those saved up Swedish puns! TFC's first ever Swedish opponents are Gothenburg’s BK Hacken of the Allsvenskan Division. Mostly known for having a logo that looks like it could be half-eaten meatballs or ample, resting breasts - Hacken will no doubt offer The Reds a European-style challenge. Also, a chance to throw that leftover IKEA allen key at your computer screen.
FC DALLAS - March 1st, 6PM
POSSIBLE FLORIDA TRIALIST: Vidal Sassoon (on Shea's insistence)
CELEBRITY SUPPORTERS: Pizza The Hut; the three dudes in their supporters' section
BIO: Ah, our old friends from Texas. Really this should be a 90 minute "Thank You" to The Hoops for bending over so ably against us in the final Champions League Group Stage Match. If it wasn't for their apathetic showing this past fall we wouldn't all be going to SkyDome in a couple of weeks!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Yorkies Cards 2011 - Pack 6

The unconventional cards, which are ultimately the final 9 cards of the 54-card set, were some of the first cards to be filled out. Doing the trophies were so much fun, even if the photos were weak. Oh well. At least I didn't do rare cards. Those would be really hard to pull off in a PDF. This pack includes the twitter-ific Brian Ching, "defender" Andy Iro and Defender Richard Eckersley. Only 3 packs left after these!

Monday, February 20, 2012

THE STARTING 11: Special features on the 2012 TFC Kia Optima

Oooh, love that ginger detailing

In what is turning out to be an annual corporate cross-promotion, auto-maker and club sponsor Kia Motors unveiled a "Special TFC Edition" vehicle. Once again, Academy coach Danny Dichio and team barista/dodgy hairstyle enthusiast Jim Brennan premiered the car, a 2012 Optima, at the Toronto Auto Show for a rapturous crowd of sub-compact coupe aficionados/fans of the English First Division (1993 - 2006). The eye-catching car certainly shows of its "football flair" but there are a few other TFC-esque features under the hood...
11. The GPS navigation system is narrated by Bob de Klerk
10. Adrian Cann autographed mirrors warn "OBJECTS IN MIRROR MAY BE MORE HANDSOME THAN THEY APPEAR"
9. Stefan Frei and Milos Kocic are constantly arguing about who gets to drive the car first
8. Satellite radio system only plays hard Rotterdam techno stations
7. Body paint available in black, silver or Eckersley
6. Lease option allows Earl Cochrane to trade in 2012 model for Nathan Sturgis
5. Car automatically squirts windshield washer fluid at the new Montreal Impact Peugeot hatchback
4. Environmentally friendly Gasoline/Chip Butty hybrid
3. Lots of good seats still available!
2. Aron Winter tires
1. It goes 0-100 in 6 years flat

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Yorkies Cards 2011 - Pack 5

When plotting these cards out, we opted for a heavy TFC slant (obviously) and because I wanted to use those mock logos here, we went with at least one player from every team in the league. Some favouritism was shown for ex-TFC players because to be honest, I don't know crap about Colorado's players short of Marvell Wynne. Also included was hair guru Brek Shea and the biggest little man on the pitch anywhere, Joao Plata.

Friday, February 17, 2012

LETTERS FROM CAMP: All quiet on the southern front

Eddie Johnson's a thing... right?

There's a strange feeling amongst TFC supporters that training camp is quiet... too quiet. So unaccustomed are we to a drama-free lead up to the season that some are getting worried. Why no more trialists? Why not enough friendlies? Why is no one threatening to leave the team? You can't blame Toronto fans - it's just all so new.
To fill the void (a little) TFC will play a scrimmage today against University of South Florida (Up The Bulls) in preparation for their upcoming participation in the Mickey Mouse Cup next week. Sadly no footage will be made available as Florida has somehow become more rural to TFC TV than Turkey was last year.
What's that you say? You still need more crumbs? Well you can always hold your breath for the Eddie Johnson MLS allocation process. One "lucky" team will get their hands on the American striker who didn't have the best European sojourn after ditching MLS. TFC has the fourth highest shot at landing Johnson and despite seemingly needing some Koevermans cover, don't appear to be interested.
Still bored? Come on - we're trying! For those of you out there who still harbour negative views or at worst apathy towards Julian de Guzman, the Toronto Sun's Kurt Larson catches up with the Scarborough native to find out where he's at. The sometimes unfairly maligned midfielder has some interesting thoughts about his time with TFC, the future of his contract and the tactical naivety of Preki.
Most TFC fans have heard about the club's "TFC Dream Job" competition by now. The Yorkies are of course endorsing applicant Maurice J. but couldn't help wonder what specific Twitter hashtags the club may have used if this competition had been available in the first four years of the club's existence...
#BarretBallCollection / #TopRowOnly

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Yorkies Cards 2011 - Pack 4

Has this joke run its course yet? No? Good because we are not halfway done. The set will all be online before the season kicks off. Keep the comments coming as I've clearly learned that if I do these again next season, I will be sure to make the cards of all the obvious ones I missed this time around. This round of cards includes the legend Dewayne DeRosario, Jack Jewsbury and defensive anchor Nana Attakora in TFC attire.

#TFCDreamJob / #5YearPlan

Bio Pic: You can use either...

In their latest effort to win back some of the fans lost to years of mediocrity, Toronto FC is running a competition to win the "Toronto FC Dream Job". Fans are being welcomed to enter a bio online and garner votes in a bid to land a coveted role with the club. The winner will earn the chance to follow the team around for a year and do fun jobs which may or may not include finding where Collin Samuel hid all those Twinkies, renting Rutger Hauer movies for Bob de Klerk and sitting next to Ty Harden on the team bus. Sadly though, the competition may be over before it starts as this very attractive application has been uncovered...
#TFCDreamJob Application: Maurice J.
My name is Maurice J. (Mo to friends) and I want the #TFCDreamJob!
I’m perfect for the job since I know lots about soccer such as "mastering" the draft, how agents fill your roster in 2 easy steps and of course… 5-Year Plans.
I have lived around the world in places like Glasgow, then Nantes, then to the other side of Glasgow and make acquaintances wherever I go. People hardly ever throw things at me anymore!
If I get the #TFCDreamJob I will definitely have good relationships with the players. I think the best way to build a bond with a player is to make them a huge promise, wait for them to be your friend, then not talk to them again for 2 years!
I promise to work hard at keeping my job. I promise to show up when things are going well and stay well out of sight whenever a crisis arises. If things go bad, then I simply hire someone to do my old job while calling myself #TFCDreamJobDirector. But don’t worry – I won’t really let the new guy make any decisions of his own!
If this doesn’t work out…. Is there a #MLSAnyJob competition starting soon?
P. Radosavljevic – soccer personality/ angry Serb
B. MacLean – businessman / BFF
R. Hscanovics – former soccer player/ my butler

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


The Reds announced yesterday that they were taking a compliment of 33 players with them to Florida to continue pre-season training. No major surprise to the travel itinerary as the club has yet to make further cuts after their initial four less than two weeks ago. Not making the trip are long-term injury projects Dicoy Williams and Nicholas Lindsay along with Jeremy Hall who (for undisclosed reasons) "trained away from the team" recently. Two younger Academy prospects, Brandon John and Tristan Jackman, don't get to ride the teacups at Disney neither but it is a magical time for (very) young Jordan Hamilton. The Academy youngster who is a month shy of his 16th birthday gets to continue his journey with the pros for at least a few weeks more.
The Reds will train in the Orlando area while participating in the Walt Disney World Pro Soccer Classic. The tournament will see TFC play at least three matches in their group stage involving Swedish club BK Hacken, Orlando City and FC Dallas. It was announced yesterday that live match streaming will be made available on the MLS website which should be much more interesting than the TFC YouTube video of the players boarding a bus to the airport. Way to depart Torsten!
Our good friends over at Waking The Red have been digging through the rumour mill and have emerged with two candidates who could be joining TFC as trialists in The Sunshine State. In line with Paul Mariner's hint last week that two domestic but non-MLS players may join on trial, the names of Kevin Huezo and Julian Uccello have surfaced.
Huezo is a 20-year old leftback who has very little in the way of professional pedigree but has had flirtations with the USA U-20 team as well as Mexican club Pachuca's junior ranks. Uccello is an intriguing character. The 25-year old Toronto-born striker was once promising enough to go on extended trial with Manchester United and ended up in AC Milan's youth ranks. However, things haven't gone as hoped for the twice-capped Canada U-20 and his pro career has seen him bounce around the Italian lower divisions with such clubs as Crotone and Casale. His healthy strike rate at those levels and TFC's weakness at back-up striker could give him the slightest in with the club.

UPDATE: This afternoon, TFC officially tweeted (if that's a thing) that Kevin Huezo would indeed be on a trial with The Reds but joined by another former USA U-20 Moises Orozco. Both players were involved with the U-20 program when new TFC Academy Director Thomas Rongen was involved which illuminates the effects the Dutchman is having on TFC already. No official denial or acknowledgement of any Julian Uccello trial yet.
Much of the Canadian football community was shocked by the story that emerged from long-time player, coach and personality Paul James. In his cathartic and tell-all novel "Cracked Open", James tells the story of a career in football with some highs... but extraordinary lows. The most shocking element of the former Toronto Blizzard and Canadian international midfielder's novel is his admittance to being a long-term crack cocaine addict. Weaving a tale that tackles James' many demons, while traversing the strange world of the CSA, is both a brave and a frightening story. "Cracked Open" is available online now through James' website.

Monday, February 13, 2012

THE STARTING 11: TFC Florida to-do list

Yar! There be treasure beneath that hideous logo!

Florida - the land of orange juice from concentrate, mothballed space vehicles, Hanging Chads (not Barrett) and Quebecois evacuees. On a map, it looks like America's wang but for the next few weeks The Sunshine State will be home to our beloved Toronto FC. This is no Daytona Beach '84 Spring Break though! There will be no time for keggers and panty raids - just serious footy business. However, like any business trip there will be a few things to do off the clock....
11. Elbekay Bouchiba will visit the state's numerous seniors' homes to discuss long-term injuries
10. Team to stop by Dunedin, Florida - mock the Blue Jays about Reds' ability to fill SkyDome with ease
9. Reggie Lambe will stare mourningly at the sea, warning sailors about the perils of the Bermuda Triangle
8. Team-building trip to Cape Canaveral just to hear Bob de Klerk say "One shmalll shtep for de man..."
7. Torsten Frings to tour Everglades - stare down gators menacingly
6. Three-day visit to the Dutch Pavilion at Epcot Center
5. Temporary re-branding TFC Academy team as "CSL: Miami"
4. Bitchy the Hawk to get into mid-season form by beating up on weak-assed flamingos
3. Paul Mariner and Aron Winter to drive around in Julian de Guzman's Lamborghini dressed as Miami Vice's Crockett & Tubbs
2. Search for "The Lost Treasure of the Tampa Bay Mutiny"
1. Lather Richard Eckersley in SPF 730 sunblock hourly

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Yorkies Cards 2011 - Pack 3

We would like to thank you for the outpouring of positive feedback for this project. It took a long time but know that it was a labour of love, so if you hate on them, too bad. You should see the printed version. You'd swear you bought them at a hobby store. They're shiny and pretty. Sure, I could've gone all holographics like Upper Deck, but I don't have that kind of dosh for what is really an elaborate joke. Anyways, the third pack includes retiree Kasey Keller, Mikael Yourassowsky, and Sebastien Le Toux.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

LETTERS FROM CAMP: "My God, they're full of stars!"

"You are just on loan Dave..."

In the most uneventful (in a good way) pre-season of Toronto FC's history, we can't help but gaze into the distance at our next meaningful opponent, LA Galaxy. In one of the shrewdest moves in MLS governance, Galaxy persuaded the league to allow them to use Mexican Pesos as their salary cap currency. This has to be the explanation for a club that already boasted David Beckham, Landon Donovan and Robbie Keane but has remarkably added Edson Buddle, Sao Paulo defender Leonardo and extended the loan of midfielder Juninho in the last fortnight. If the peso-policy isn't real, then you'd almost have to believe that MLS wants LA to be a "superclub" and face fellow giant Seattle in the CCL Semi Final on their march to the FIFA Club World Cup. But that thinking would be crazy right? Yes. Crazy. After all... there's "proof" out there!
Sadly for LA Galaxy's accountants, their fans can't join in on the excitement yet. The club had to cap attendance at the CCL QF 2nd Leg against TFC at 7500. In their defence, the average mid-March temperature in Los Angeles is a chilly 19 degrees Celsius. Brrr. That is far too cold to enjoy a prawn sandwich.
While the details of who is available for TFC in the CCL QF seem to be ever-changing, CONCACAF has made it clear that Eric Avila and Jeremy Hall cannot be selected. Both players were included in other CCL squads in the current Champions League season which leaves them cup-tied. There is an appeal process for TFC to lobby CONCACAF but those two players seem to be no-go's. Avila's absence will be felt the most but does give rookie Luis Silva a shot at early SkyDome stardom.
Terry Dunfield reveals that he had successful surgery on a nagging hernia problem this off-season. The Canadian international claims to be nearing 100% after the December operation in Germany and is raring to go in 2012. The groin tear was suffered while still with Vancouver last season which could explain why Dunfield's TFC appearances could be described as "sparing" at best. Even if fully fit, it may be hard for the affable Canuck to crack the Starting 11 regularly with a lot of competition this year in the middle of the pitch.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Yorkies Cards 2011 - Pack 2

Didja like what you've seen so far? If you answered "no" then it probably won't get much better than that.  In this package of brilliance, you will find the inaction shots of Milos Kocic, 2010-workhorse-2011-goat Dan Gargan and the biggest endorsement 'miss' going of the not-yet-Harvey's sponsored Torsten Frings.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

LETTERS FROM CAMP: Getting shirty

Easily in the Top 250 MLS English leftback specialty tees - order now!

So confident in the make-up of their first team for 2012, TFC management have taken the unusual step of pre-announcing oncoming cuts. For Reds supporters this is like being in some kind of training camp Twilight Zone. So used to having trialists come and go only to be cut or signed on the first day of the season, this assuredness in squad depth is almost off-putting! The club took to their website to drop a not-too-subtle hint that more cuts are likely before the team heads down to Orlando, Florida next week. With only one Supplemental Draft pick and a handful of Academy products unsigned, it doesn't take a detective to do the math. But seriously, did they have to attach the picture of Michael Green to the article? Note to Michael - hold off on your Toronto apartment hunt.

We can't say we're the hugest fans of TFC's new away kit for 2012. I mean, it's bad enough that the shorts and shirt look like they come from different kits but changing the badge to all red? That's bordering on sacrilege. Anyhoo, after five losing years we all know that at BMO Field it's not how you feel... but how you look! With that in mind, The Yorkies are launching our new 2012 line of TFC and random footy universe t-shirts for your purchasing pleasure. What better way to show up to SkyDome on March 7th than in one of these handsome and customizable garments?
Show love to red-headed step-hero Richard Eckersley (Gingery!)
Swiss stopper extraordinaire Stefan Frei (Chocolatey!)
Pint-sized pocket-rocket Joao Plata (Heighty!)
Our benevolent leader Torsten Frings (Germanic!)
The Bermudian midfield marvel Reggie Lambe (Muttony!)
Celebrate the meat of the order with The Lads (Ampersandy!)
Or... get ready for the WCQ with some Canadiana (Non-Argosy!)
Check out the rest of the "Yorkies Footy Clobber" shop (here) and browse through all of the categories. Don't forget to check back soon as new designs are on the way before the season begins.


Monday, February 6, 2012

THE STARTING 11: Outrageous Reggie Lambe exclamations

Reggie shows the ball how to bow at his feet

Every club has one of them now and again. A colourful and flamboyant character who has such a lofty opinion of their own skills that they can't help but tell the world. Often this can be an endearing quality to fans but only when there is actual skill to back it up. TFC has had the odd player who has been "more Tweet than feet" but newcomer Reggie Lambe may have the chance to be both entertaining and talented. The young Bermudian is definitely confident in himself and with his less-than-subtle Twitter handle @ReggieNaldo, we can expect some wildly bold statements. Perhaps like so...
11. Was run out of Ipswich Town by the jealous local beef industry
10. Successfully sued Gwen Stefani - forced her to remove "E" from her L.A.M.B. clothing line
9. Kindly chose Toronto FC over Barcelona as to not stunt the growth of young Lionel Messi
8. 2012 will see him win the MLS scoring title, MLS MVP, a Grammy and the Nobel Peace Prize
7. Nick Soolsma is his butler
6. His full name is actually Archduke Reginald Spencer Lamberton III
5. His arrival will cause manager Aron Winter to play the revolutionary new "4-3-RL-2" formation
4. He invented Facebook and the Reuben Sandwich
3. The Bermuda Triangle has let herself get fat
2. Sheep stole his name
1. Toronto FC TV is ok but Beyonce had the best video of the year

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Yorkies Cards 2011 - Pack 1

Man, did I love buying hockey cards as a kid. I'd take my 35 cents, run over to the corner store, and open those bad boys up. After stupid things like inflation and market saturation, my beautiful card collection's value sunk like a stone. I still have them (if interested, inquire within) but some of the cards are, effectively worthless. Pretty, but worthless.

Fast forward a decade and a half, and I'm a graphic designer now (enter cheap shots here). I suggested to the lads on this site last winter, "hey, how cool would it be to have a set of Yorkies soccer cards?" and they were all like "hell yeah!" but I didn't do them. This off season, the idea reared its head again however this time, I could picture them.

So without further ado, I present to you the very first pack of the Yorkies Set 2011. A set of 54 cards with some of your favourite players, and for especially us TFC supporters, some players you just cannot stand.

Over the course of the month and some change, we will be releasing 9 packs in all of 6 cards each.


Pack 1 includes such luminaries as Jamison Olave, deGoo and David Beckham. Enjoy.

Friday, February 3, 2012

LETTERS FROM CAMP: "The first cut is the cheapest..."

"Goodbye pal... And yeah, He's cool."

A sad day for four young men as Toronto FC made their first four cuts of pre-season today. Sadder still is the effect it will have on blogs as some quality nicknames will forever go stale in Toronto. Cut from the 42 man training camp conundrum are:
Position: D
Lost Nickname: Nicky Nickardo
Position: D
Lost Nickname: The Master
Position: MF
Lost Nickname: Dr. Ivo
Position: MF
Lost Nickname: MixMaster MikeMazzullo
This leaves only one remaining Supplemental Draft pick left in camp, Michael "Mint" Green, with the remaining unsigned trainees being Academy products. With four spots expected to be filled before the season begins, the likelihood of some new homegrown professionals has increased.
That top-notch, success-driven organization The Canadian Soccer Association made a few major announcements last night in Toronto. First on the menu was the official announcement that all of the next round of Canada's WC 2014 qualifying would take place at BMO Field much to the chagrin of Canadian football supporters in other parts of the country (rhymes with blank hoover). In reply, Toronto-based supporters were quoted "Meh. Astroturf.... 12 hour flights.... What is this other part of Canada you speak of?"
Part of the BMO Field extravaganza will also include a summer friendly with the USA which will officially celebrate the CSA's 100th Anniversary (so many World Cup to show for it!) and inadvertently, the War of 1812 which celebrates its 200th Birthday this year. Well done War - you don't look a day over 150 - thanks for Laura Secord. During these matches, Canada will be wearing its new Umbro kit also revealed last evening to roars of "it's ok I guess".

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

LETTERS FROM CAMP: "You complete me"

"I have a squad thiiiiiiis big"

Isn't it refreshing to hear Aron Winter and his troops talk about how the club is "almost complete"? Barely a week in to training camp and the club's depth charts are nearly full. With the most recent acquisition completed, Chilean defender Miguel Aceval, the biggest hole of the off-season - the defence - has pretty much been taken care of. There are a few tweaks to tinker with but for the first time in TFC history, fans have an idea of the club's make-up by February 1st. It wasn't too long ago that the only thing Groundhog Day brought to TFC was an influx of washed up trialists, the likes of Kiki Musampa, Ibrahim Said and Brian Kerr.
Word through Kurt Larson's excellent TFC coverage today that both First Round SuperDraft picks, Luis Silva and Aaron Maund, are officially under contract to the club now. With their official inclusion, the club's first team squad boasts 26 players leaving 4 spots left to contest before the season. With reports that Luis Silva is learning the ropes quickly at TFC, the crop of youngsters is currently quite bright and the remaining spots will also likely be taken by youth projects with Stefan Vukovic, Efrain Burgos Jr. and Mike Mazzullo making early impressions.
With demand being steady for the CCL QF at SkyDome, TFC was set to release a further 1,000 seats for public sale. With the match still more than a month away, more than 40K in attendance seems likely. Unfortunately, one player that the throng will be welcoming back is brief ex-Red Edson Buddle who is reportedly returning to LA Galaxy today. When last seen in MLS, Buddle was lighting it up before taking a sojourn in the German second division. When asked how this affects Galaxy's salary cap - giggling was heard at MLS Head Office.
In other giggling/ticket news... our "friends" on the eastern end of the 401 aren't having as much luck selling seats. Montreal Impact owner/provolone magnate Joey Saputo was bemoaning the club's inability to sell more than 7,000 season tickets so far. This is really going nowhere... just more of a laugh for Reds' supporters. And a chance to write "provolone".