Of course he's happy. He's just French, that's why he looks grumpy. - Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE
3 big updates from TFC media day.
We'll have full coverage of TFC's media day later on, with not one but two WTR staff reporting back for your reading pleasure.
For now though, there were 3 big bits of news beyond all the usual PR lesson influenced fluff.
First up, TFC confirmed that Pat Onstad has joined the club, and announced his position as Chief Scout and Manager of Football Partnerships, responsible for liaising and managing relationships with football clubs in Major League Soccer and internationally. He will also work with football agencies and foreign soccer development academies.
Seems like a strange position for him really. Goalkeeper coach would make sense, as would assistant coach which is what he was doing at DC United, so a move to a scouting position seems odd. Given the gap between when DC first talked about him leaving and his confirmation becoming official, there's certainly room to speculate that this might not have been plan A. Is this an example of Kevin Payne finding out he doesn't have carte blanche to completely remake the club as DCU North? MLSE does seem to be very loyal to it's employees (those below the head coach position at least) so did they put a block to Onstad replacing Jim Brennan or Stewart Kerr? It will be interesting to see what happens in the future with this one.
Second, Ryan Nelsen will indeed be present at TFC preseason by the end of the month. He'll go back and play one more game with QPR before coming back to Toronto permanently, in time to oversee the vast majority of preseason. This is a very good thing for many reasons, to get one of the big distractions out of the way, and ensure there won't be any big disruption a few games into the season for example, but mainly for removing an excuse for failure at the start of the season.
The 3rd bit of news is definitely more ambiguous as really, what else was he going to say but Eric Hassli re-assured everyone, saying he's happy to be here, hadn't requested a trade, that the story was flat out wrong. To sum it up in the spirit of another enigmatic Frenchman, the seagulls were all following the wrong trawler. This may or may not be true of course, maybe it never happened at all, maybe it did but Payne's tough talk of repercussions scared him straight, or maybe he's just toeing the party line while things get worked out behind the scenes. Playing the sulk isn't going to improve his chances of getting a trade the hell out of here is it?
A busy day, one that on the face of it seemed to quash drama rather than create it, which makes a change in these parts. Let's hope it's all true.