Well, it's been an interesting morning in the never dull TFC land, as tweeted rumours came out that Kevin Payne was talking to former Montreal Impact head coach Jesse Marsch for the head coach position.
From Patrick Friolet of RDS came the following:
Of course at his introductory press conference and in later interviews Payne was asked about the status of Paul Mariner and seemed to confirm that yes, Paul Mariner remains the coach, though always with the caveat that everything was under review and nothing was definite going forward.
That may well still be the case as there were reports out earlier that TFC were actively looking for an assistant coach with Jim Brennan deemed not up to the job. Is Marsch to be the assistant, or would he be the head coach with Mariner offered the assistant job?
All Toronto's proper journalist types have been on the case, with Ben Rycroft seeming to confirm via a source that the offer was for head coach, not assistant, but that Marsch had also had talks with MLS' other contender for Most Dysfunctional Club Chivas USA.
Jeffrey Carlisle of ESPN managed to get right to the source, quoting Kevin Payne as saying that reports of TFC hiring Jesse Marsch are "a complete fabrication", though he apparently didn't confirm or deny if any offer had been made to Marsch.
It certainly should be interesting to see exactly what happens here, and if Marsch does land in Toronto exactly where he ends up and what other moves may follow will be very intriguing. Would Paul Mariner accept moving down to an assistant role or would that be the end of him at the club? Would Marsch accept an assistant position? If he does, would that really be a good thing, or would it just be another Winter/Mariner situation of having plan B lined up, increasing the pressure on Mariner's position? Would Marsch be fully behind Mariner, or would he have one eye on the top job the whole time?
Whatever happens, let's hope it happens quickly, before the draft and before many moves are made within TFC's roster, so that things can be as settled as possible when the season starts, another mid season shuffle is the last thing TFC needs.
Talking of roster moves, at the relocation event staged over the last few days, Payne has been present for a bit of face to face promoting with the fans and letting supporters know that something is in the works. The following is from a supporter who attended one of Thursday's slots.
After outlining his philosophy for building a winner, a familiar refrain for TFC supporters, Payne got specific. "We need players with character. Character is the basis of a winning team, players who put themselves second for the team and are prepared to put themselves on the line for their teammates. Those are the sort of players upon which you build a winning team."
Payne added that TFC skews old. "Nothing against Torsten and Danny, but you have to build a team on younger players who are committed to the team for four or five years. All the successful TFC teams have had a core of players who have been with the club for a while. In the next couple of days, you will see a trade that shows our new direction."
The new club president and GM appeared sincere and committed. The fans applauded at the end.
Seems like interesting times ahead.
EDIT: We'll try and update things in the comments section as more news come out, for now, it appears Chivas USA are confirming that they've given their job to someone else, and John Molinaro has been told that no offer has been made to Marsch "it's not true" "There's no truth to it"