Hot on the heels of Mikael Yourassowsky being released comes the news that Andy Iro and Peri Marosevic will both not be returning for 2012 either. This announcement was a little different, the carefully worded press release on TFC's website saying - "Both Andy and Peri declined our contract extension offers and now the club is ready to move on, said Toronto FC Head Coach & Technical Director Aron Winter. We met with both players at the conclusion of the season and presented them with fair offers that they have declined."
Obviously no details were released of what those fair offers were so we can only speculate as to whether they were fair or not, or whether either player has delusions of grandeur and unrealistic expectations. Marosevic made a guaranteed salary of $129,000 last season, it was Generation Adidas so no skin off Toronto's nose, but I can only assume (and hope, if they've got any sense) they offered him a pretty sharp decrease on that amount. As for Iro, his 2011 salary was $87,346. I like Iro, I'm sad to see him go, but again, I'd hope my team wasn't offering to match that. I'd say about 60-70,000 would be about right for both of them really.
I already gave my opinion on Iro when the rumours about him going to Nottingham Forest came out, let's hope for his sake that that or one of the other "host of championship clubs" is a realistic possibility and not just a story planted by his agent to help with negotiations at TFC. As well as leaving TFC with very few officially signed and fit Centre Backs, his exit also means that there's now an opening for the position of chief TFC whipping boy, a role he inherited from Ty Harden, who got it from Chad Barrett, who got it from Nick Garcia and so on and so forth.
Though i'm sad about losing Iro, for Marosevic, a shrug and a meh is about as much as I can really dredge up. It wasn't a bad gamble to see if he could recapture the early promise that earned him that Generation Adidas contract. Unfortunately, he really never showed more than a few sporadic flashes of his talent, and was eventually judged not good enough to keep the slow and unspectacular, but steady but consistent, Nick Soolsma out of the starting lineup.
That lack of success made his greasy Ronaldo wannabe haircut, douchebag sideburns, fancy colourful boots and stupidly high squad number all the more ridiculous and difficult to stomach. My inner grumpy old man shaking a fist at a world he doesn't understand will certainly not miss Marosevic. There were some good memories from Marosevic of course, if his first goal against Portland was the result of a deflection, his (seemingly at the time, but actuallly not) crucial goal against Pumas in the CCL was very impressive, a very cool side footed finish into the empty side of the net where other players might have concentrated more on power than precision.
So thanks for that Peri and good luck wherever you end up next. Now 3 players, plenty of cap space and an international spot freed up this week, surely now TFC can officially announce a signing or two.