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Monday, December 31, 2012

THE STARTING 11: Subtitles for Toronto FC's 2012 highlight film

So empty... so erotic.

It's sad to think of a poor editor watching hours of tape chronicling TFC's disastrous 2012 season in order to splice together a pseudo-highlight reel. What to choose? Lingering shots of Terry Dunfield's sock tassels blowing in the summer breeze? Bitchy The Hawk giving her ladyplummage the once-over? Wiedeman? Sometimes it's all how you sell the video as seen in the zenith of subtitled movie names "Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo". If viewers are so excited by the title: or subtitle - they'll watch any old crap! (Coming Soon: "TFC 7: Electric Boogaloo") So, for that editor sitting alone in his suite on this New Year's Eve we offer these subtitles to help make 2012: Seem Less Crappy

11. 2012: No Payne, No Gain

10. 2012: FreiFall

9. 2012: Winter to Mariner - Contrasts in Ineptitude

8. 2012: The Hangover VI - Hot Escobar Nightz

7. 2012: The Hunt for the # 1 Draft Pick

6. 2012: The Five Year Plan II: The Plannening

5. 2012: The Expendables VI

4. 2012: 50 Shades of Empty Grey Section Seats

3. 2012: The Hobbit - An Unexpected Loan to LDU Quito

2. 2012: A Slightly Less Fistful of Dollars

1. 2012: Lose Hard With A Vengeance


Friday, December 28, 2012

THE RUMOUMETER - Holiday "Rum-Mometer" Special Edition

This is where you usually find The Yorkies' regular off-season rumour roundup - "The Rumoumeter". However, since it's the holidays and we've mainly been on a food and drink drip for a week, today's edition is a bit different. With the Arnold Peralta/Jeff Larentowicz rumours out of the way we hit our sources (courtesy of the LCBO) for some TFC holiday whispers. 30% of the time they will be true half of the time. The Rumoumeter will be back properly next week but for now... Some of the rumours have weight - others little more than whispers; we take their temperature with... "The Rum-Mometer"...



Thursday, December 27, 2012

Signing la Vida local? Reds close to adding Honduran hotshot

"I will never wear a red kit with a bank sponsor again!"
Usually we leave off-season rumours for Friday's "The Rumoumeter" but today's tidbit out of Central America has grown el legs quickly and is seemingly close to a done deal - except for those silly official announcements. Word leaked from midfielder Arnold Peralta's hometown club CD Vida today that the Honduras U-23 and one time full international - in the infamous 8-1 Canada drubbing no less - was on his way to say sorry to Canadians by joining their most needy MLS side.
While few up here in the frozen tundra get the chance to keep tabs on the Honduran Liga Nacional, those in the know seem fairly high on the young midfielder with the obvious comparisons to Amado Guevara coming thick and fast. That may be wishful TFC association but anyone with a tool-set approaching the one-time Reds favourite would be good news for a midfield currently bereft of offensive creativity.
Ironically it may have been the man himself, Amado Guevara, who helped push Peralta towards BMO Field. It is no secret that Kevin Payne has been keen to add Guevara's eyes to scouting Honduras in an attempt to open a much needed pipeline for The Reds in Central America. This not yet being an official deal, rumours of its origin are sketchy with some hinting that a deal has been in the works for six months. Whether this indicates a long-term Mariner/Cochrane joint or an MLS negotiation however is unclear. Our good friends at Waking The Red did some digging and did find a morsel that may however link initial interest with Kevin Payne while he was still at D.C. United.
No matter where this Latino morsel originated, it would be a welcome addition to the midfield that was looking rather bare since Ryan Johnson's departure - not that it wasn't already rather threadbare. Throw in the afternoon whispers of TFC getting their paws on Rapids' midfielder and MLS veteran Jeff Larentowicz and things may start looking downright stable around here. If only it weren't for those pesky official announcements!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Boxing Day Blowouts - Ten Reds that we should have kept the receipt for

It's under the "This Is Our House" sign

When Toronto FC calls MLS headquarters to finalize a transfer, Don Garber should always ask "do you want a gift receipt with that?" Much like that sweater that your mother gave you yesterday, every club ends up with an ugly, ill-fitting acquisition now and again that just leaves you uncomfortable and itchy. In their nearly seven years of wheeling and dealing and wheeling that deal around again, TFC have racked up way more than their share of bad purchases. In the spirit of Boxing Day (St. Ivan of Drago Day to our Russian readers) we wait in the RETURNS ONLY line with a handful of Reds sweaters that were the worst fits.

MISTA: Apart from looking like Sean Penn's slightly awkward brother, the lazy Spaniard may have been the zenith of Mo Johnston's ridiculous purchases. Given a DP contract while teammate Dwayne De Rosario was signing air-cheques, Mista's single goal will go down in no history.

GEOVANNY CAICEDO: One of the "answers" to TFC's long-term defensive woes, the Colombian was built like a brick sh*t house and played like one too. Well, in one half of pre-season friendly play that is.

CARLOS RUIZ: Another one of Mo Johnston's "guys he always wanted", Ruiz took about five weeks to complete the five-hour flight from Guatemala. Once he arrived it was obvious to all he never wanted to be here.

LAURENT ROBERT: The man released to make way for Ruiz, the miserable Frenchman looked great for about two-and-a-half matches. Rumours that he was disgusted by what Tim Hortons calls a croissant are unproven but tres drole.

JEFF CUNNINGHAM: The speedy striker who scored goals in MLS by the bucket load - before arriving in Toronto - always looked like he was halfway between pouting and swearing while in red. Was a great little-and-large pairing with Danny Dichio for about 130 minutes.

JULIAN de GUZMAN: Never short on talent but always with questionable desire during his time in Toronto. The former La Liga standout was never the right buy despite his hometown roots and warmed few hearts in the stands. It should have been better for both sides.

NATHAN STURGIS: Hardly the fault of the player himself but more of the braintrust that decided a journeyman MLS plumber was worth a SuperDraft 1st Round Pick. That pick could have been Houston striker Will Bruin. Instead, Sturgis plodded through 16 unremarkable appearances in red.

JAVIER MARTINA: Easily one of the Top 500 Curacaos to ever play in MLS. Lit TFC fans' hearts on fire during a cold home opener versus Portland with some deft goalscoring on his debut. Disappeared from that day on.

ANDY IRO: Yet another one of the "answers" to TFC's half-decade of defensive drudgery, the giant Liverpudlian never found his feet here. Literally - he often looked like he was rooted into the BMO Field turf. The asterisk off course with Iro was that he was the final chess piece in the worst checkmate of TFC's dealing history - The De Ro Trade.

MIGUEL ACEVAL: See above re: defence. He came. He saw. He drank. He looked kick-ass in a mugshot. If only Aceval could have caught MLS attackers as easily as he was caught by Houston Police, above mentioned woes would have been solved.
Do you have more former (or current) TFC'ers that you wished you still had the receipt for? We'd love to see your additions in the comments below. But we're not letting you get in this Returns line ahead of us.

Monday, December 24, 2012

THE STARTING 11: Signs that Christmas has arrived at Toronto FC

"Mr. Koevermans... your blood test results are in..."

Happy Christmas Eve y'all! Or, for those of you who don't celebrate Christmas - get back to work... it's Monday you lazy so-and-so. That special day where we honour the famous trade pact of 33BC where the warring gold, frankincense and myrrh industries finally put aside their differences is indeed upon us and nowhere is more festive than the world renowned home of good times and cheer - BMO Field. The Dichio is nestled all snug in his bed... and Jim Brennan is doing whatever it is he does too... but how else do we know that Christmas has reached Exhibition Place?

11. Gale Abossoumonde finally got that extra letter in his last name he's been asking for

10. Reggie Lambe takes to Twitter to ask: "Yo mi got no gift ya no? Where da Santa at bra?"

9. Stefan Frei gets drunk on Swiss liqueurs and wanders around the bus station yelling that "he invented Toblerones and Dub Step"

8. Eric Hassli gets mistletoe tattooed on his lower abdomen

7. Jesus of Nazareth proclaimed as "the best box-to-box Messiah in the game today"

6. Danny Koevermans is 63% gravy

5. Danny Califf begs Santa Claus to send him anywhere except the North Pole

4. Earl Cochrane just traded both SuperDraft picks for a figgy pudding and some egg nog to be named later

3. Paul Mariner is wearing his formal dress shorts

2. Richard Eckersley asked to guide sleighs tonight

1. Tom Anselmi swings open his window and tells Joao Plata to go buy the biggest goose at the butcher's shop and bring it to him!


Friday, December 21, 2012

THE RUMOUMETER – December 21, 2012

Welcome to The Yorkies' regular off-season rumour roundup - "The Rumoumeter". Too busy to keep your TFC ear to the ground all winter? Just stop by the site and we will quickly show you what rumours are hot - and which ones have hit the back burner. Some of the rumours have weight – others are little more than whispers; we take their temperature with... "The Rumoumeter"...

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Here's "The Boss" as Reds win lottery

Sorry, you're all wrong. Gale's "The Boss"

The Mayans were right! Sorry - had to use the crappy Doomsday joke one last time before tomorrow but suddenly Toronto FC are being gifted left and right with those mystical pan-dimensional creatures - centrebacks.
With the ink barely dry on Danny Califf's "I Heart T.O." tattoo those almost ambitious Reds won today's MLS Weighted Lottery and claimed young American (via Togo and Benin) defender... wait for it... Gale Abossoumonde. First one to make a good song about him wins a prize*. "The Boss", as he will likely be known through ease and laziness, was another great U.S. teen idol on the rocket to "soccer stardom" but rather than go the MLS route like many of his peers, he decided instead to sign with Brazilian "sports marketing" firm Traffic. That's where it seems his star seemed to stop soaring.
Agbossoumonde (so hard to spell without looking!) bounced around clubs such as the historic Miami FC and Estoril Praia while constantly being loaned out to the likes of Braga, Djurgarden and most recently Carolina Railhawks. While his level of professional experience and pedigree is not going to transform The Reds' backline next year, he may be a useful prospect IF he can regain the promise of his youth that made him a USA U20 fixture.
For TFC this pick-up gives them yet more options. With two new centrebacks on the books, this may very well change the club's philosophy heading into the SuperDraft with their two high picks. Trade opportunities and concentrating on other areas of need is now a very nice luxury. Depending on how "The Boss" shows in training camp this could also bounce the likes of Logan Emory and Doneil Henry down the pecking order. Of course for a club that has lacked depth for so long - this is a good thing. Overall this is a low-risk move for TFC to grab a kid who could still find his way and on a low wage to boot. And hey, that's hardly the end of the world now is it?
*Our seethingly jealous admiration

Here's some help with that chant South End...

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

“The Gents” with Stan Bentley – “...this is no time for such frivolity!”

Welcome to "The Gents" with Stan Bentley - The Yorkies' regular advice column for our valued readers. Bring your modern day problems and have them answered by the most valued voice - a 1950's journeyman footballer. "Back of the net!"
Hi Stan!
Merry Christmas to you! What would you say is the true meaning of the holidays?
Aaron – Markham, ON
Tidings to you good sir! This is a fine question as we head towards this special time. We’ve lost the true spirit of the season what with crass commercialism and the never ending push to consume. No matter what religion you follow, whether you celebrate the birth of the infant baby our Messiah… or Miscellaneous Other… the true meaning of the season is goodwill towards all men, peace around the world and forgiveness unto your brother.
Holiday time – great stuff. Played with an Edwin Holliday at Middlesbrough for a stretch. Never forget during the FA Cup 3rd Round Replay against Hartlepool. There was a couple of stewardess birds off of British Caledonian in the front row that I was having an old wink at. Just as I was about to get a number, Holliday has a shot on goal that wallops Old Stan’s backside and goes in for the winner! Of course I run over to the stews to celebrate, only to hear over the tannoy that Edwin Holliday was credited with the goal. He ended up with Man of the Match and I saw him leaving with a stew in his Vauxhall! I have nothing but ill will towards that man to this day. If I saw him on the street I’d punch him right in the kidneys. He had been like a brother to me – but I’ll never forgive him.
iPhone, Android or BlackBerry?
Liam – Kitchener, ON
Great Lord Kitchener! Is this code chap?! Has this been filtered through the Enigma machine? I’m here for you soldier. Morse me (I phoning you is too risky!) a reply to the following: Are you in a foxhole? Are you currently behind enemy lines? Is "Operation: Android" a go? Oh bugger, I knew this day was coming! Bloody Soviets! Not to be trusted. This is a real blackberry of a pudding indeed. I shall go ring the church bells to alert the village! Keep safe Private! Your brother in arms – Stan
Hello Stan,
I bought my boyfriend TFC season tickets but still want some stocking stuffer ideas. What would a man like you recommend?
Tracy – Pickering, ON
Good gravy lady – this is no time for such frivolity! Our boys are holding down the final line between us and a life in the Gulag! (Still awaiting the next code Liam! Over.) However, for the good of the Commonwealth we need to keep a stiff upper lip and continue on with traditions. Otherwise The Bolsheviks have already won. Here’s a few items Old Stan wants to see in his Yuletide Sock… 
  • Gentleman’s Foaming Brush (tortoise or ivory handle only)
  • Thick Church Bell Ringer’s Gloves (mink lining)
  • Myrrh
  • That British Caledonian stewardess’ I Phone number
  • A deluxe, bomb-shelter friendly waterbed
  • Someone to punch that bastard Edwin Holliday in the kidneys
  • A Prussian-English Dictionary (just in case)
  • Musky scented balms / a bayonet rifle
  • A bushel of blackberries (for some reason)
  • Heinz Salad Cream
Any of those ten things should fill your man’s stockings amply. Especially in these last few days of peace. Enjoy this Christmas… like it’s your last. Stan.
Happy Christmas/Miscellaneous to all of my readers. May the spirit of the Yuletide/Other be on you… before the nuclear menace from beyond the Iron Curtain engulfs us in the Czar’s cruel grasp. Cheerio!
Have a problem, question or comment for Stan? Send him an email at or leave a message in the comments section below and it may be featured in a future issue

Monday, December 17, 2012

THE STARTING 11: 2012 Toronto FC TV Holiday specials

"Miguel with your nose so bright, won't you start a fight tonight?"

The holiday season... not only a time for crippling credit card debt, drunken office shenaniganism and inappropriate uncles but also for staring aimlessly at the television machine. Yes, it's that time of the year when regularly scheduled programming is interrupted by holiday specials that have been on loop since 1971. Did you know that puppeteer, claymation artist and elf/dwarf unemployment goes up by 84% on December 27th? Fact. With Toronto FC now under the ownership of media giants, there is no way the club could miss this annual opportunity to fill the airwaves with Reds' flavoured-frivolity/ help the dwarf unemployment fiscal cliff.
11. "Terry Christmas, Mr. Dunfield"
10. "Kevin Payne Fixes The Holidays"
9. Danny Califf's "Backpedalling Through The Snow"
8. "Old Man Winter II: Aron's Revenge"
7. "Uncle Paul Mariner Yells at The Kids: A TFC Town Hall Holiday"
6. "Joaelf"
5. "Christmas Comes to Salford" aka "Richard Eckersley Slide Tackles the Baby Jesus from Behind"
4. "Mi Nah Kno Bout Dem Snowmen Ya Kno?" Reggie Lambe's Very Twitter Christmas
3. "Away in a Manger: Beitar Jerusalem FC vs. Toronto FC Friendly"
2. "Miguel The Red-Eyed Rojo"
1. "The Grinch Who Tore ACL's"

Live from Manger Stadium

Friday, December 14, 2012

Danny Califf ends up nowhere but Toronto

"Hello Anywhere But!"

If this move works out then it may be one of the more shrewd bits of business that Toronto FC has pulled off in recent history. If it goes pear-shaped then it could mark the introduction to the next disgruntled member of your Eff Cees. With the 1st Overall pick in today's MLS Re-Entry Draft (Round 2: Electric Boogaloo) The Reds selected CB Danny Califf - that same Danny Califf who famously begged Philadelphia not to trade him to Toronto last summer.
The big and sturdy Califf was instead traded to Chivas USA this past season but The Goats seem to be headed back to their Hispanic roots and decided not to pick up Califf's option, leaving him unprotected. Fast forward to today and the eternal search for a Toronto FC centreback made the temptation too much for Kevin Payne & Posse to pass on. Is there a risk? Perhaps. However, Payne has been in this league too long to take such risks and many assume that the club has already sounded out Califf with some outlets claiming a deal has already been agreed upon.
Danny Califf is a very capable MLS central defender and the pairing of him and Darren O'Dea is if nothing else - tough. It could turn the middle of The Reds' defence into "The Land Where Ankles Fear to Tread" - and that is a good thing. In fairness to Califf, his comments last summer regarding Toronto, while unfortunate, were not exactly absurd. TFC was a winless disaster zone and the management circus was on the edge of fracture (again). Perhaps it is the influence of a thoughtful president such as Kevin Payne, that TFC's future doesn't look as unpalatable to a veteran like Califf. Some supporters will hold it against him if he does indeed suit up for TFC in 2013 - but will forgive if he can do what so few before him have... defend.
Elsewhere in the Re-Entry Draft, former Reds were popular, making TFC the Ireland of MLS - spreading its diaspora far and wide. Chad Barrett and Hunter Freeman were picked by New England; Ty Harden and Dan Gargan will aim to make San Jose "The Team That Preki Likes"; Conor Casey (barely TFC) will negotiate with Philadelphia; and Eric Avila is currently trying to find a place to buy skinny jeans in the Denver area after Colorado grabbed his hip rights. In the other non-draft news, TFC also announced the official re-signing of Andrew Wiedeman and Jeremy Hall. So… yeah... that.

THE RUMOUMETER – December 14, 2012

Welcome to The Yorkies' regular off-season rumour roundup - "The Rumoumeter". Too busy to keep your TFC ear to the ground all winter? Just stop by the site and we will quickly show you what rumours are hot - and which ones have hit the back burner. Some of the rumours have weight – others are little more than whispers; we take their temperature with... "The Rumoumeter"...

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Domino effect begins as Reds ship Kocic and Johnson to Timbers

Another team for Milos!

With all due respect to Justin Braun, TFC has made its first major deal under Kevin Payne's leadership. The long rumoured/now official deal between Toronto and Portland sees Milos Kocic and Ryan Johnson being fitted for hipster lumberjack shirts and skinny jeans while The Reds receive Timbers' First Round SuperDraft Pick (3rd Overall) and hulking backup keeper Joe Bendik "Like Beckham" in return.
While the move doesn't immediately aid the ever-shrinking squad numbers of TFC, this deal can be regarded as the first domino to fall in The Reds' re-building (again) effort. By all accounts the club has a number of irons in the Scandinavian fire that they would like to make happen but were up against the wall in regards to salary cap. Eliminating Kocic and Johnson's wages helps ease that pain.
By acquiring another high draft pick, Kevin Payne & Posse now have some flexibility at next month's SuperDraft. They can keep both picks and pray to the Nativity Baby Jesus that both picks turn into Blue (or Red) Chips and accelerate the youth movement. They can deal one for a warm MLS body and still have a remaining high pick. Or - least likely - deal both away in a major deal or a couple of deals to plug the now increasing holes in the starting eleven. The addition of Bendik, will offer some much needed competition to Freddy Hall as the # 2 keeper and/or allow young Quinlan Roberts the opportunity to go out on loan.
The departing Reds will be met with different emotions from TFC supporters. Milos Kocic was more than a suitable backup keeper, especially in 2012 when Stefan Frei missed the majority of the season. His heart and spirit will be missed by many but the majority will agree that Frei is the superior keeper overall and Kocic deserves a chance elsewhere. As for Ryan Johnson, we may have not seen as mercurial a talent since Amado Guevara was here. All the tools, speed and power to be great... but always just missing that certain spark. That being said, he logged many minutes in his roles at forward/midfield and his departure leaves another big hole to fill. These dominoes better start dropping soon.

UPDATE: According to The Toronto Sun's Kurt Larson this afternoon, Freddy Hall's option is not being picked up by the club. This of course means that Joe Bendik "Like Someone" is your new # 2 keeper - and Reggie Lambe will still send out illegible Tweets. As you were.

“The Gents” with Stan Bentley – “Sweet Jackie Charlton that is hot!”

Welcome to "The Gents" with Stan Bentley - The Yorkies' regular advice column for our valued readers. Bring your modern day problems and have them answered by the most valued voice - a 1950's journeyman footballer. "Back of the net!"
Hi Stan,
It’s my dream to play professional soccer (hopefully with Toronto FC) but my school coach says I need to be stronger. I heard that high protein diets can help build mass – do you agree?
Jordan – Whitby, ON
Firstly young duck, your grammar is as dreary as your grasp on diet. Anyfronts, you’ll be runt of the litter if you don’t eat proper lad! Old Stan always followed the dietary guidelines of the 1949 Ministry of Edibles and Transport’s handbook "Eat This Britain". This timeless bit of prose outlines the 9 Essential Food Categories for your gob. Followed them since my first tooth and played for over 23 professional football clubs! In nautical order the categories are: Irish Steel-Cut Oats; Custard; Bread; Meat; Breaded Meat; Powdered Milk; Eel (Jellied or other); Ale/Stout; and Other. Only eating the meaty way will give you a Turk’s belly and the sweats something awful. Must say though – all this butcher chat has given me the pangs for some bacon rashers. Played with a Ronnie Bacon at Gillingham once. Terrible pass completion – I never got on the end of his service. Goes to show you – all Bacon makes for a poor career. He smelled like powdered milk as well.
Hey there Stan,
I’m coaching my daughter’s soccer team – how do I balance being her parent and being her coach?
Maurizio – Vaughan, ON

You sir have made my day! What a rollicking belly laugh you’ve given me. LadyFootball! I’ll put that one in the old steamer trunk of chuckles for a gloomy day alongside bollocks like "Soviet Collapse", "Channel Tunnels" and women in trousers. And your false name… how did you come up with that jumble of letters and sounds? You have a gift – like a young Peter Cook. As the young ruffians would say on their portable telephone machines: "LOL – a Letter of Laughter"! Cheers Marvin (wink)
I’d love it if you could finish the following sentence: "A woman looks hottest when __________"
Thanks! Kristina – Toronto, ON
Bloomin’ heck Missus! You are a cheeky so-and-so! Well you sound like a bird who knows how to give her gent what he’s after so let’s not beat around the old bush then… we’re all adults here and we know what we’re on about. It’s not just a hot image in Stan’s mind’s eye… it’s piping hot! Steam rising to meet the heat, long lean legs, a sweet rounded rump, juices flowing… boiling to a crescendo and leaving your lady dripping from the temperature of that steamy room. Yes! Yes! Nothing like coming home to your lass putting the finishing touches on a roast lamb dinner in a clammy kitchen. Sweet Jackie Charlton that is hot! If she happens to be wearing a Royal Jubilee apron, all the better! Old Stan needs a smoke. Bit of mutton wouldn’t go a miss either. Don’t forget the other 8 food categories Kristina!
Have a problem, question or comment for Stan? Send him an email at or leave a message in the comments section below and it may be featured in a future issue

Monday, December 10, 2012

THE STARTING 11: Things Kevin Payne found in his new office

"Hi, I'm here to pick up a Billy bookcase for Mr. Payne..."
Starting a new job is never easy. Starting a new job where your predecessors did their best to inadvertently drive the business into the ground is even harder. Nonetheless, Kevin Payne has embarked upon arguably the most challenging job in Major League Soccer - fixing your Toronto Eff Cee's. As the new man settles into BMO Field expectations are already high but while supporters itch for his first big move, Payne himself is simply moving. It's never fun to occupy someone else's old office, and after seven years the new boss has some clearing up to do...

11. Two giant boxes of black-and-white Adrian Cann Glamour Shots

10. A steamer trunk full of empty Twinkie wrappers with the name "Senor Collin Samuel" embossed in gold on the lid

9. Dwayne De Rosario's giant unsigned imaginary cheque

8. The secret chamber where Mo Johnston used to hide away from the media for months on end

7. A 25-pound bag of BitchyChow (TM)

6. Preki

5. The vowels needed to finally complete Raivis Hscanovics name

4. An old telephone with all ten speed dial buttons permanently set to Barry MacLean's office

3. A monkey in a shearling coat

2. A big red button under his desk with the word "MANAGER" on it that swings open a trap door

1. Four 5-Year Plans

Friday, December 7, 2012

THE RUMOUMETER – December 7, 2012

Welcome to The Yorkies' regular off-season rumour roundup - "The Rumoumeter". Too busy to keep your TFC ear to the ground all winter? Just stop by the site and we will quickly show you what rumours are hot - and which ones have hit the back burner. Some of the rumours have weight – others are little more than whispers; we take their temperature with... "The Rumoumeter"...

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

“The Gents” with Stan Bentley – “Canary of the Year”

Welcome to "The Gents" with Stan Bentley - The Yorkies' regular advice column for our valued readers. Bring your modern day problems and have them answered by the most valued voice - a 1950's journeyman footballer. "Back of the net!"
TFC just hired a new president and changes seem likely - did you ever end up with a tough new boss unexpectedly?
Rick - Alliston, ON
I feel your pain Richard (King's English please) - some new gaffers are just plain nasty pieces of work. Old Stan was having a cracker of a year at Norwich City. Was headed for the luxurious "Canary of the Year" award until that old curmudgeon Norman Low was put in as the new boss. Honestly, you train for nearly two hours a week, cut down to a pack a day and even switch from the stout to the ale - and for what? One late night out at his daughter's 18th birthday bash and I'm in the reserves! Norman Low got his though - ended up in the Americas managing something called the Cleveland Stokers in an NASL - which was possibly some type of television programme. Ah, stokers - fabulous things - blowing away to keep the fire alive. Wonder what happened to young Bernice Low? Good luck with the new chief Ricardo!
Hi Stan!
Where do you see yourself five years in the future? Thanks!
Cindy - Ottawa, ON
Well you are an excitable lass aren't you? That's an unreasonably heavy dosage of the exclamation marking lady. Are you taking LadyMedications? Anywhats, Old Stan makes it a point to never look too far into the future. Why fret over things you can't change? Live for today Cindy - the future is a vast unknown. That being said, in two quarters of a decade you will most likely find yours truly circling overhead in his personal gyrocopter looking down sadly at Communist-controlled Moonlandia as the great apes fight for the last remnants of nuclear-scorched terrain againt the evil robot-machine overlords. Either that, or on a small boat in the British West Indies. Live for today... and use less irrational typography.
Hi Stan,
What do you think about dating older women? Appreciated,
Warren, Oakville ON
My pleasure Warren - about thrice an hour. Oh sorry... "what"... not "when". Aye up, start over. Don't be so fickle Warren! The older woman can be worldly with exotic experience and may have learned some very interesting things along the way. Especially if she's from Derbyshire... if you catch my tail. As long as the lady you are pondering fills out a frock in the right regions and knows the her way around the business end of a shepherd's pie, Old Stan says don't think thrice about it. Go forth and experience the charms of the older woman. After all, the 22-25 year old set deserves some affection as well!
Have a problem, question or comment for Stan? Send him an email at or leave a message in the comments section below and it may be featured in a future issue

Monday, December 3, 2012

A "Quick Pick Upper" as Reds go for Braun

Justin Braun. Not to scale.

As the transfer window swung open in Major League Soccer, TFC decided to make their first move of ClearOut 2012 (TM) with a trade that was met with a resounding "... oh, ok. Why not?" 2012 First Round pick and fan of shooting at odd angles Aaron Maund has been dealt to Real Salt Lake in return for forward Justin Braun. Do with that as you may.
Maund came to TFC with unreasonably lofty expectations being a First Round pick, with many fans holding their breath that a future centreback had been found. Plus, the English translation of his Twitter handle is "I am a monster" - so he gets some of the blame. Maund looked like many rookies would have on the league's worst defence and wasn't helped when Paul Mariner suddenly decided he was... Ta-Dah!... a defensive midfielder! The Notre Dame grad will now head to Utah where he can listen to jazz, wear John Stockton shorty-shorts and make use of numerous wives/Osmonds. At least according to Wikipedia.
Heading northward ho (not you Brandy) is depth forward Justin Braun. The 25-year old who was discovered playing amateur "soccer" in his native Utah (no doubt in front of many wives/Osmonds/Mitt Romney... thanks Wikipedia) spent the lion's share of his career with Chivas USA racking up a decent 24 goals in 96 appearances. Last season, The Goats shipped him to Montreal (Boooo! Hissssss! Pepsi!) who in turn flipped him to his hometown Real Salt Lake. Braun will no doubt have a great chance at getting his career back on track in Toronto where Danny Koevermans is scheduled for full fitness next October and Eric Hassli will somehow be suspended for 15 games starting next week.

THE STARTING 11: Lesser-known impacts of David Beckham's time in Major League Soccer

Long Live Love David Beckham!

In 2007, a monumental arrival impacted Major League Soccer in ways previously thought impossible. It happened though... an expansion team who wouldn't make the playoffs for six years and counting. Also... David Beckham went to Los Angeles. Yes, FIFA's leading hairstyle innovator (1995-2007) indeed joined Galaxy from Real Madrid in a faux-messianic quest to "bring the soccer to the America". Only the petty out there will deny that Beckham's six seasons in MLS had a positive effect on the footballing landscape of North America but not everything he accomplished was caught on film...
11. Single-handedly caused "The Great Californian Tattoo Ink Crisis" of 2007
10. "Nasal Cockney" now a recognized second-language in many suburban Los Angeles high schools
9. Well coiffured presence in the line-up made Landon Donovan look downright macho
8. Created a 15% spike in Southern California newborns named "Home Depot"
7. His arrival opened a floodgate of other high-profile European footballers like... um... Teemu Tainio?
6. MLS Cup will forever give off a subtle dose of "Homme by David Beckham" cologne every time it is lifted
5. Thankfully persuaded Don Garber to give up on his dreams of a faux-hawk
4. Personally organized the loan of Chad Barrett to Norwegian league - to improve LA Galaxy's goalscoring
3. Helped wean middle-aged women off of "Twilight" and "50 Shades of Grey" for 90 minutes at a time
2. Todd Dunivant totally into super skinny jeans now
1. Coined the pop culture term "Brucearenasexual"

Friday, November 30, 2012

THE RUMOUMETER - November 30, 2012

Welcome to The Yorkies' regular off-season rumour roundup - "The Rumoumeter". Too busy to keep your TFC ear to the ground all winter? Just stop by the site and we will quickly show you what rumours are hot - and which ones have hit the back burner. Some of the rumours have weight – others are little more than whispers; we take their temperature with... "The Rumoumeter"...







Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Kevin relief.... wait....

Jump up. Jump up. Wait for it.... and get down.

A landmark occasion for Toronto FC supporting and punning as the club concluded its seven year exhaustive search today by naming Kevin Payne as Club President and General Manager. As reported here yesterday - as well as in almost every other football medium in North America - the worst kept secret in Major League Soccer was officially unveiled this afternoon. Payne, long-time president of D.C. United, has accepted what is arguably the most challenging of roles in MLS - clearing up six seasons of absolutely wasted time and resource and finally putting the "C" in TFC.
After years of expecting the worse from this club, and more recently having press conferences leaving heads shaking for days, today turned out to be a surprise. A pleasant one. From the moment Emperor Palpatine Tom Anselmi stopped talking and Kevin Payne began, it was like witnessing TFC grow up before our eyes. Gone was corporate double-speak, off-the-cuff ramblings and snarky blame-gaming instead replaced by thoughtful, assured and most importantly, professional answers delivered by a man who actually looks and sounds like a leader.
Yes, we have all been on the TFC False Dawn train before so it is hard to give in to the positive feelings fully - but - you couldn't help feel optimistic over Payne who claimed that "this is the only job in MLS he would have left D.C. for". Expectedly, the new President and GM said all the right things about the owners and the existing staff but we were left with the feeling that fools won't be suffered gladly for long at BMO Field. Those wishing for an unrealistic massive overhaul of personnel will be left wanting and indeed things may not improve on the field immediately but for today, and for the first time since 2007, many TFC fans believe that the man in charge actually knows what he's doing. Time will tell of course, but a bit of belief is more than we've had in a very long time.
Now MLSE, leave the man alone to do his job. Yours truly… everyone.

“The Gents” with Stan Bentley – “…faffin’ about in pastel boots ”

Welcome to "The Gents" with Stan Bentley - The Yorkies' regular advice column for our valued readers. Bring your modern day problems and have them answered by the most valued voice - a 1950's journeyman footballer. "Back of the net!"
Hi Stan,
I’m frustrated with TFC as they seem more interested in money over winning championships. Were endorsements and sponsorships this important when you played?
Craig - Etobicoke, ON
The modern game has gone to absolute tosh my lad. All I see on the Match of The Day now is a bunch of foreign ponces faffin’ about in pastel boots with kits that look like motorway ad hoardings. It’s a bloody disgrace I say! Players selling their souls for the almighty shilling - is nothing sacred? Just play your football then maybe a post-match pint at The Cobbler’s Arms Pub on William Street ("For good times and good ale it’s The Cobbler’s Arms"); possibly if you are peckish you may stop for some nosh at P. Wilson Pie & Mash on the High Street ("The official jellied eel purveyor of Southend United’s Stan Bentley"); and make it a night out I say, you played well and you did fix up your hair after the match with Olde Berkshire Masculine Hairstyling Petroleum ("On the pull? Reach for Olde Berkshire") – just don’t give in to greed and shameless self-promotion! All the best, Stan Bentley ("Modern Day Advice – The Bentley Way")
Just started to read "The Gents" and love it. Can I follow you on Twitter or Facebook?
Justin – Toronto, ON
Who are you man and why are you following me?! Don’t try it on boy-o, Old Stan knows a thing or two about being followed… and I own a pair of karate slippers. I was trailed for weeks when I played for Charlton Athletic. Shadowy figure following me about all round South London: The Gentleman’s Oriental Calisthenics Parlour (where I got the slippers), The Gentleman’s Parlour of Boudoir Ladydancing and even to the Community Opium Parlour (unisex) – no respite! It was only after I got transferred to Carlisle United that I heard through the grapevine (a boudoir ladydancer) that my mystery stalker had been my teammate at The Addicks - speedy forward Johnny Summers! But tell me this one - how I was supposed to know that Mrs. Rhonda Summers was married? Kept a few photos of his lady in a book – none of her face though. Keep away, Stan.
Hello Stan,
I have a problem. My boyfriend is very competitive with me about our careers and it really bothers me – what can I do?
Samantha – Bolton, ON
Cheerio Samantha – love to get some post from a ladyreader. And Bolton too! Up the Trotters! To your query though… I must say I am utterly confused. By my scientific calculations your boyfriend is quite alarmingly employed in the secretarial pool, as some type of crossdressing lunch lady or he is a stewardess. Ah, competitive stewardesses. Old Stan was a celebrity judge once at the "Pan-European Stewardess Olympiad and Dance" you know. Fantastic display it was. Trolley Dollies as far as the eye could see. The Inga from Royal Dutch was ahead until she failed to light my pipe properly; then the ginger from Aer Lingus underbuttered my scone which left the madame from Air France… took her three fumbly goes before she successfully buckled my safety belt – 1st Prize! Any way you slice it Samantha, there’s no need to fret – any airline with a male stewardess like your boyfriend will soon be bankrupt! You win! Bon Voyage!
Have a problem, question or comment for Stan? Send him an email at or leave a message in the comments section below and it may be featured in a future issue

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Insert Payne/pain pun (here): Toronto FC to name Kevin Payne as President?

"Get out ya seat and Jump Around!"

In the world of football punnage possibilities, TFC couldn’t hire anyone better than ex DC United president Kevin Payne. And, if multiple sources are to be believed, it is exactly what the leadership-phobic club has done today.
Hot off the heels of Payne announcing his resignation from his long-held post with United, it now looks likely that for the first time in its history, TFC may have a club president - and with actual MLS football pedigree. In his 17 years with Capital City Capitals FC, Payne is seen as an instrumental piece in the club's sometimes dominant league standing which includes four MLS Cup titles, four MLS Supporters Shields and two U.S. Open Cup titles. While his hire will not include a guarantee of success and trophies, it may just bring TFC closer to operating like a stable football club.
While many will see the proposed move as "bold" (Don Garber), there is a little hand-wringing going on regarding Payne. His apparent lack of knowledge of the "Canadian soccer landscape" has been floated but this seems to be reaching for pitfalls at best. Why is it a club’s responsibility to be near-and-dear to the national program? An inherently dysfunctional one at that. Yes its apples and oranges but would a club in England or Italy be concerned if a great presidential candidate had little previous dealings with the FA or the FIGC? No, they hire the best man to make their club a success as that is their responsibility.
The other concern in some circles is Payne's previous working relationship with Earl Cochrane and Thomas Rongen. In most cases, a familiarity with existing staff would be considered a plus but many in Toronto do not hold Earl Cochrane in great regard so there is worry that the existing rot may be able to continue. While not a hysterical fear, it is one that will only be solved if MLSE make this a complete deal. In other words, this seems to be a solid and positive move if the owners follow up 50% of the deal - identifying and signing Payne - with the second 50% - giving the new club president the mandate, and most importantly, the power to create change.
For the most part Kevin Payne is a complete outsider from MLSE with about as solid a resume as was available for this role. TFC supporters have been yearning for a "football man" to lead this club from the top for a long while and on the surface, we may have been given that. Of course, with Toronto FC it is always what lurks below the surface which makes all the difference. For now, we invite the Payne.

And we are legally obliged to include the following...

Monday, November 26, 2012

Hassli to return as DP? Local tattoo parlours prepare for big year

Less of that in 2013 please Monsieur

Stocks rose in both the neck ink and red card markets on the TSE this afternoon after the Toronto Sun's Kurt Larson tweeted the following: "CONFIRMED: Eric Hassli will be back with #TFC as a DP to start 2013." While yet to be confirmed by the club, the return of the burly Frenchman would hardly be a shock but his wage may raise a few eyebrows.
Most TFC supporters are fine with the idea of Hassli's return but would balk at using a DP slot on the 31-year old. Perhaps if his arrival in Toronto hadn't been blemished by an injury-filled stutter-start, people would have fewer problems with him taking a Designated slot but rightly or wrongly - there is a feeling in TFCLand that Hassli is past his best and likely to continue to fight injuries. However, when it comes down to it, Hassli returning as a non-DP would have been at a wage very close to the DP exemption so the only loss is the slot itself. Whether you feel that a better DP is available for TFC - and if they are capable of identifying and acquiring said DP - is down to a matter of opinion.
Hassli's proposed return is possibly telling on a couple of fronts regarding TFC's braintrust. You can surmise that there is unease at the reliability of a returning Danny Koevermans thus making the presence of an established striker, ready in March, a necessity at any price. For the cynics, there may be a feeling that TFC's less than stellar scouting community can't be relied upon to find better than Hassli and also that there is a need for the striker to return in order to justify Mariner & Co.’s gifting of a 1st Round Pick to Vancouver. At the other end of the spectrum, the more optimistic will laud some stability in the line-up and the preservation of an MLS-proven striker who undoubtedly wants to succeed in Toronto. Either way, DP signings do not make or break a team in this league and it will be the addition of squad depth which will most decide TFC's fate next season.

THE STARTING 11: Re-branded titles for Toronto FC's management duo

"It's yo birfday... go out there and take what you want..."

Whether you believe in their ability to reverse TFC's fortunes or not, you would have to concede that Paul Mariner and Earl Cochrane are losing the PR war. Fresh from the verbal to-and-fros that were the TFC Town Halls, it is evident that the club's management team needs to be painted in a rosier light. Much like previous successful re-brands (Crystal Pepsi, New Coke, Diet Cherry Crab Juice etc.) our faithful football leaders just need to jazz up their title so that the kids and the hipsters think they are groovy and such. Here are just a few choices for you gentlemen... it's a moniker shop, go out and take what you want...
11. "Canada's Next Top Management Team"
10. "My Two Dads" (submitted by Eric A.)
9. "The Make-A-Wiedeman Foundation"
8. "The 5th Beatle... and the 6th Moody Blue"
7. "Pearlgelina"
6. "Seven Year Itchy & Scratchy"
5. "Earlinem and 50 Pence"
4. "The Global Warmers" (eliminating Winter once and for all)
3. "Paul Mariner feat. Earl Cochrane"
2. Paul & Oates
1. "President's Choice - Memories of Year One"

Friday, November 23, 2012

THE RUMOUMETER - November 23, 2012

Welcome to The Yorkies' regular off-season rumour roundup - "The Rumoumeter". Too busy to keep your TFC ear to the ground all winter? Just stop by the site and we will quickly show you what rumours are hot - and which ones have hit the back burner. Some of the rumours have weight – others are little more than whispers; we take their temperature with... "The Rumoumeter"...







Wednesday, November 21, 2012

“The Gents” with Stan Bentley – “What’s wrong with Blackpool…?”

Welcome to "The Gents" with Stan Bentley - The Yorkies' regular advice column for our valued readers. Bring your modern day problems and have them answered by the most valued voice - a 1950's journeyman footballer. "Back of the net!"
Hello Stan,
What would you say is the key to a successful relationship/partnership?
Yours truly, Chris – Welland, ON
Firstly chap, why the use of "/" in your query? Hands too tired for the Queen’s "and or"? No wonder you’re bollocks with relationships you lazy sod! Secondly, be clear lad – are you referring to a relationship "and or" partnership with a fellow professional, and or a more horizontal relation? Chocks away – Old Stan will cover all of your lackadaisical bases Christopher...

In a workplace partner seek someone with a good head on their shoulders, a keen eye and a poacher’s left foot wide of goal – a real Bobby Hunt off of Colchester United. In the lady-range, grab a lass who can fill out a gown while being a dab hand with both the gas range and a typewriter. Either or, the top traits in a life-long partnership are loyalty, trust and let’s be honest… physical beauty. In the good times and the bad, you have to accept their shortcomings and have them accept yours. So Guv, when it comes down to it, the key to any successful relationship is my dear Alsatian – Douglas. Wonderful canine he is. Smells a wee bit of egg but you know what? Never missed an easy goal in the 1957 FA Cup 4th Round like a certain Bobby Hunt and or overcooked my cheese on toast. Edna.
Toronto FC had bad luck this year when a black cat ran in front of our goalie during a game. Did you believe in superstitions when you played?
Tim – Richmond Hill, ON
"Pish-posh" is what Stan says to superstitions. Bunch of old clap-trap for fishwives and the clergy. And, what is wrong with the Black Cats? I had a right good run-out with Sunderland in my day. Although, now you mention it, there was a bit of funny business at Roker Park. Scottish keeper Willie Fraser would always be first in line at the canteen on fish Fridays and was a very superstitious lad. If he dropped a grain of salt off his plate he’d use the rest of the shaker tossing it over his shoulders. By time I’d get to the front of the line there wouldn’t be a grain of the white stuff left for my chips and if there is one guarantee in life – unsalted chip on a Friday means no goals on a Saturday. That’s just science! One Friday Old Stan tried to get right near the front of the grub line only to end up with a grain of salt in the eyeball from one of the Scotsman’s tosses. I was out for fortnight then transferred away from Sunderland. Bit of bad luck that was. Made a point never to cross paths with the Black cats again… nor say Willie Fraser’s name three times in a mirror. So don’t be a silly boy Timothy – no such malarkey!
Hi Stan,
Love your article. My fiancĂ© and I are planning our honeymoon and since you seem well travelled I thought I’d ask – would you go to France or Cuba if you had a choice?
Hope to hear from you, Victor – Mississauga, ON
No. That would be the answer. You’ve got one thing spot-on though matey, Stan has seen the world… from Skegness to Margate… I’ve been around and I will tell you right now, your choices couldn’t be worse for a honeymoon. Seriously man - France? What’s wrong with Blackpool like regular newlyweds? I took the ferry across to Boulogne once to get some cheap ‘baccy. Got on the first boat back to Dover. If you’d like your post-nuptials to resemble the evacuation of Dunkirk, be my guest but don’t come crying to me when your new ladywife spends the next four weeks getting the smell of soft cheese out of your waistcoat. And my word, Cuba? If your idea of a romantic getaway is Fascist Marxism, boxing and cigarillos… enjoy Vladimir. Three weeks on a steamer to Havana followed by a week of eating nowt but dry beans? Good luck getting your lady near your Tropic of Cancer after five days of bean trumps. You’ll be the one with a Cuban Missile Crisis boy-o. Just two words for you my socialist sympathiser: A caravan in Wales. Congrats!
Have a problem, question or comment for Stan? Send him an email at or leave a message in the comments section below and it may be featured in a future issue

Monday, November 19, 2012

THE STARTING 11: Player reactions to being released by Toronto FC

The Release Rocket

Having your contract terminated by a club is never a nice moment for a footballer... depending on the club doing the cutting. The most common reaction from departing players is a solemn thanks to the fans but every now and then a few words are uttered that make you curious. After TFC culled its "Dirty Half-Dozen" last week, young midfielder Oscar Cordon took to Twitter with a post-cutting "Thank God". Optimists thought it was his religious side coming out but when I yell "JESUS CHRIST" at Toronto FC - it's not in anticipation of the second coming. Blasphemy aside, we thought we'd take a look back at a few other unique parting shots by ex-Reds....
11. KEITH MAKUBUYA: "Surely this pink-slip was meant for Andrew Wiedeman right?!"
10. LAURENT ROBERT: "Au revoir to this croissant-forsaken tundra!"
9. ANDREA LOMBARDO: "I'm sad to leave but I'd like to thank all the fans... and does anyone know when the next Dufferin 29 bus is due?"
8. MAXIM USANOV: "Maxim so angry he could punch horse!" (10 minutes later) "...does anyone know telephone for horse dentist?"
7. LESLY FELLINGA: "I was going to put a Haitian Voodoo curse on BMO Field... but obviously I was beaten to it."
6. MISTA: "Adios... and gracias for the free money!"
5. MARTIN SARIC: "I feel robbed."
4. TY HARDEN: "Wait... I still play here?"
3. RAIVIS HSCANOVICS: "Vry trrble day. Hscanovics dsspnted ovr rlse frm Trnto"
2. COLLIN SAMUEL: "They may take away my contract... but they can never take MY SANDWICH!!!"
1. ADRIAN CANN: "Oh and one last thing. My abs? They ARE real... and they're spectacular!"

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Cann'ed! Ex-MVP one of six released by TFC

A career to fall back on. Now do "Blue Steel"!

Out with the old, in with TBD. The replacements are yet to be identified but Toronto FC lowered the boom on three former starting defenders and three Academy grads today as Paul Mariner & Co. begin to make space for TFC XII. The following dirty half-dozen were the first to be deemed surplus in the magical world of "No Frills" football but are unlikely the last...
ADRIAN CANN: All the abs in the world couldn't save the former club MVP and nine-time Canadian international. For a stretch, Cann had become the club's most solid CB - which is of course not saying much - but a series of injuries was followed by an apparent lack of interest by the new manager. Thank God there is so much money to be made for 32-year old male models.
TY HARDEN: The only real surprise is that he was still here to be released. "Try Harder" was given more than enough chances to solidify a starter's role but his oak tree-esque mobility and constantly bewildered looks doomed him to petering out at TFC under a cloud of "mystery ailments". Off you go Ty. Finally.
DICOY WILLIAMS: Sad Tweet Alert! Sad Tweet Alert! The big Jamaican had the briefest of bright moments when he and Adrian Cann were a healthy duo but injuries and his 2km/h top speed doomed him to oblivion. That being said - he is a semi-regular with the Jamaican national team so are TFC missing something? Wrong Caribbean island maybe?
OSCAR CORDON: The diminutive midfielder seemed like he was the apple of Aron Winter's eye for a period but completely fell off the radar in 2012. Hopefully a useful NASL career can be carved out for the affable local lad.
KEITH BAKUBUYA: It all went downhill when the Academy grad told TFC TV that his last name was pronounced "MA-KOO-BE-YUH" instead of the far more entertaining "MAKKA-BOOYAH!" From that point on it was only a matter of time. A career snuffed out by boring pronunciation.
NICHOLAS LINDSAY: Lindsay was the first Academy grad to really turn heads at TFC. The speedy winger looked like he had the skills to play at a level similar to fellow grad Ashtone Morgan but an unfortunate (and daft) snowmobiling accident was the catalyst for the end of his TFC dream.
While many will bemoan the fate of three young locals, this is simply the reality of having an Academy system. It is unfortunate that a U-23 set up doesn't exist within the TFC framework but local kids are cut from clubs all over the world. As for the veteran defenders, there will be some sentiment for Cann but in all honesty none of these three were the way forward for Toronto and would be hard-pressed to make the bench on many MLS clubs. The only questions that remain are "who is next?" and more importantly "who is replacing them?" The post-season fun has begun.