The days of information coming out when clubs were good and ready for it to come out are long gone, and so it was today that two players took it upon themselves to tweet confirmation of a couple of moves.
First off was Bradley Orr.
On my way the airport... New chapter starts now ! #TorontoFC— Bradley Orr (@bradleyorr2) January 24, 2014
On your way TO the airport Bradley , but anyway. 3:41 am means he should be arriving in Toronto sometime this afternoon, to be whisked off to Downsview, so maybe we'll get a late Friday official notice sent out of his signing, glum looking shirt holding picture and all.
This one has been rumoured and more or less confirmed for a while now, and opinion on Orr is varied so far. At the top level, there's cautious optimism, ie he's a championship level player so should be able to do the job, though let's hope his cap hit is reasonable. That seems to go down to 'he's pretty hopeless, and a bit of a headcase, cross your fingers it might work out, but I wouldn't hold your breath' Alarmingly, those that have seen him play recently seem to fall mainly in the latter category.
I haven't seen him play at all, and I'd say I'm closer to the top end of that scale. His resume is certainly a lot more impressive than Richard Eckersley's was before he came here, though he's obviously older so maybe on the downslide of his career. I think the headcase thing is a bit overblown and in the past, and let's face it Orr/Bloom (I doubt he's coming over here to be a backup to Mark Bloom) sounds like a much better combo at RB than Bloom/Richter does.
EDIT: TFC have indeed made it official, though sadly no glum shirt holding photo.
The other news is again not a surprise, and that is the departure of Robert Earnshaw.
Thank you to @torontofc for their kindness this past year.Ryan Nelsen wanted me to stay but certain things cannot be controlled...tbc— Robert Earnshaw (@RobertEarnshaw) January 24, 2014
I guess it was always possible that he might have come back, he wouldn't be a bad option to bring off the bench, or replace Jermain Defoe if he's off at the World Cup. In a salary cap world however it doesn't make sense to be paying too much to the backups and would Earnshaw have been happy to sign for a reduced wage as well as a reduced role (if it was offered to him, no idea if there was real negotiations for that or not)?
So just the one season then for Earnshaw in Toronto, and all in all it was a bit of a disappointment, as injuries in the second half of the season meant he never really regained the form he showed in March and early April. Still, top scorer for the season, in what looked like it would be an incredibly tough team to play as a striker for, not too shabby, good enough for 5th in wtr's top 36 countdown. He can hold his head high and I wish him the best of luck wherever he ends up next.
I'll end this with a highlight, the last goal of TFC's 2013 season, showing off his strikers instinct and sharp reflexes to score the winner in the game against Montreal.