Ryan Nelsen and Kevin Payne have been taking every possible chance to remind Toronto media that they are on the hunt for a big name addition during the summer transfer window. The talk has gotten even larger in scale since the arrival of Tim Leiweke and his promises of bringing a Beckham type player to the club after joining as the new President of MLSE.
The talk of big signings is nothing new around these parts though, as it has long plagued Toronto FC and often seems to be used to try and distract fans from results on the field. The constant attempt to keep fans hopeful is a part of any club, but seems to be very prevalent around BMO Field. The talk of big signings is not the issue though as it would be fine if the club delivered on all of that chatter by bringing in the names that they claim to be targeting rather than leaving fans wanting.
It seems to be a cycle that is repeating itself once again this summer as on Thursday Nelsen confirmed that the club has missed out on a major signing as the player they were targeting has decided to go to another club. There were no names included so speculation was wide spread as to who the club might have missed out on. Could this be the death of the Carlos Tevez to Toronto FC report (if that was ever real) or was the target in question a smaller and more realistic option?
A possible name that would fit just what Toronto have claimed to be looking for is that of Ezequiel Óscar Scarione. The Argentine midfielder fits the description of an attacking playmaker who can provide scoring which is something the club has stated that they are looking for.
Scarione is a 27 year old attacking midfielder who seems to be hitting his stride of late. His last season with FC St. Gallen saw him lead the Swiss Super League in scoring as he notched 21 goals in 36 matches for the club, plus added one more in cup play. That total was impressive from the attacking midfielder since it was nearly half of the club's 54 goals during the league campaign and was 17 more than the next leading scoring on the team who only had 4.
On the back of that season he has been linked to a number of different clubs outside of Switzerland. A season like that would have made him the kind of player that Toronto FC is looking for and it comes as no surprise that he was linked to the club.
TFC are not the only club to be linked to Scarione though as he has also been linked to a move to Italy or Turkey with clubs like Bologna, Kasımpaşa Istanbul, and Kayserispor all in the mix. It seems that Kasımpaşa Istanbul are set to land his signature though at least according to recent reports. Google translate gives us the following:
Scarione wants to leave FC St. Gallen
Oscar has Scarione FC St. Gallen stated that he wants to leave the club. The Argentine is in intense negotiations with the Turkish club Kasimpasa Istanbul.
Bad news for FC St. Gallen: Three clubs - Toronto, Canada, and the Turkish club Kayserispor and Kasimpasa, the Fifth and Sixth last championship in the Süper Lig - have extended the probe to St. Gallen's Oscar Scarione him and lucrative deals submitted. This seems the Argentines now to succumb, even though he had stressed a few weeks ago, only to change into a league that brings him more athletic and go to a country where his family feels comfortable and safe. But numbers seem to change views.
On weekends Scarione flies to Turkey for medical tests. Extend these positive and the club agrees with the billionaire president Yildirim Zafer with FC St. Gallen through a transfer, the eastern Swiss lose their most creative player.
There were not a lot of reports linking the player to Toronto FC but it is possible that he was the big addition that they missed out on. He certainly would not have been a DP level signing of the likes of David Beckham since his name would not be all that well known to the average TFC fan, but the quality he showed in Switzerland certainly would have made him an interesting player to add to the squad.
It is all water under the bridge now with the player set to move to Turkey. We will never know if Scarione is the player that the club missed out on but he is at least one name that can be added to the mix. Since TFC will never confirm who that player was all we can do is speculate and that is most of the fun of transfer season anyhow.
Now just to be a tease here are some highlights of what we are missing out on!