The quality's slowly rising as we get to the halfway point of the Toronto FC Top 40 Countdown. Today we get the first player who got a top ten pick, and the first player to not have a bottom 10 pick. Also, the first player whose ranking matches his squad number, at least until that big bad Torsten came along and took it off him. Back where he belongs at Number 22 is Tony Tchani
Average Ranking: 21.273
Highest Ranking: 10
Lowest ranking: 29
Duncan: 18. I really liked Tony Tchani. Centerpiece of the Dwayne de Rosario trade, his time here was sadly short before he was shipped off to Columbus (New York to Toronto to Columbus, I think we all know who was the real loser in this year's dero trade saga).
His first couple of games here had me convinced he was going to be a great player, I declared a burgeoning man crush on a podcast, and was internally debating whether MLSsien or MLEssien should be the correct spelling of what was bound to become his new nickname. Athletic, physical and great at using his body to separate others from the ball and then shield it from them. Sure his passing needed work, but he looked to be a great destructive prescence in midfield.
Then it seemed to go just a bit wrong, his play started mirroring his melancholy French weather tweets. Maybe it was an injury, though my theory is that he was a victim of coaching. Just playing his natural game when he got here, he looked confident and sure of himself, then after some time to absorb the lessons of how Aron winter wanted him to play, he seemed hesitant and unsure of what it was he was supposed to be providing
He did improve as the season went on, as if becoming more confident in what was expected of him, and looked good as one of the two more attacking midfielders in the point back system. His mood on twitter seemed to improve as well, and after the Voyageurs Cup win, he was jokingly inviting everyone back to his place for a party. Of course he was traded shortly after that V-Cup win. The arrival of Frings and Dunfield meant he was somewhat surplus to requirements and so became good trade bait to use in the grand 'can Andy Iro be the dominant Centre Back we need' experiment, a trade that doesn't really look all that good right now, but hey at least we got Leandre Griffit as well. We're all happy about that one right?
His finest moment in a TFC shirt came of course against his new teammates in Columbus. He coolly finished off a terrific team move that got my vote for TFC goal of the year, then jumped over the ad boards and ran up to the crowd for a heartwarming celebration. Only problem was the ref had warned him for persistent fouling, and then booked him for getting involved in a bit of a fracas with the Columbus bench just a few minutes early. The letter of the law was thus applied and the second yellow was produced. It's something I look back at now with a wistful chuckle rather than cursing his stupidity as i did at the time.
Soon after he arrived in Columbus he was injured and missed the rest of the season. I wish him well in his recovery, but maybe not too well on the pitch, as if he develops like I think he might, that Iro trade is going to look dumber and dumber.
Keaton: 19 He looked to be the next big young thing in Toronto. Then we got Iro. Tchani has a whole lot of upside. I really don't like that he plays for the Crew now. Whatever. I'm over it.
Dave: 24. The guy who got traded first for De Rosario and later for Andy Iro. I guess we never really got to see the best of Tchani as he was never really fully fit for the club. He ended up being surplus to the midfield needs of the club and was used as a good piece of trade bait. This is one move that I really hope does not come back to haunt TFC because he will certainly be better then Iro in the long run the question will just be how much better.
Peter Meraw: Lots of potential but we don't have a lot of patience
Kristin: Too much whinging about the weather. OK, but much to learn
James: Really high on him when he came to town, but left quickly after. Nasty tackle by Beckham limited action. Silly red card forced MLS to admonish the refs, that only should be appreciated.
JC_Plante: Lack of playing time and early departure hurt his ranking(26). But I still feel he can be very good in MLS.
The Yorkies: Ran like a posessed giraffe. Miss his weather Tweets
Canadian Texan: Didn't like picking him up and trading him away. That was more of a matter of principle thing than a "he's a great player" thing
Blindfolded Tank Driver: I liked Tony, sad to see him moved so quickly after arriving.