An era is truly ending at Toronto FC. According to reports from TSN’s Kristian Jack, the club has indeed agreed to sell forward Sebastian Giovinco to Saudi Arabian side Al-Hilal for a transfer fee between $2 and 3 million , ending the Italian’s four-year tenure at BMO Field.
Breaking news: Sources confirm to me that terms have been agreed between @Alhilal_EN & Toronto FC for the sale of Sebastian Giovinco. The transfer will be finalized in the next day or two with paperwork to come. Toronto FC will receive a transfer fee close to $2m-$3m. #tfclive— Kristian Jack (@KristianJack) January 31, 2019
After one of the weirdest transfer sagas in recent memory at TFC — involving some odd rumour-mongering out of Saudi Arabia, agent Instagram trolling, and discordant stories at every turn from media and club officials here — Giovinco is on his way to, at the very least, a warmer home.
Giovinco leaves TFC as unequivocally the club (if not the league)’s greatest-ever player, scoring a club-record 83 goals in 142 appearances as a Red. He was a crucial part of winning the MLS Cup, the Supporters’ Shield, and three Voyageurs Cups, while also leading TFC to an additional MLS Cup final appearance and a spot in the 2018 Concacaf Champions League final.
The diminutive Italian star has an MLS MVP award (2015), a George Gross Trophy as Canadian Championship MVP (2017), and a Concacaf Champions League Golden Ball (2018).
Seba moves on now to the Saudi Professional League, and its most successful club, Al-Hilal, who currently sit atop the standings.
Although things ended somewhat sourly in Toronto, with TFC unwilling to meet Giovinco’s contract demands, the Atomic Ant will surely be remembered here as the keystone of most of the success the club has ever had, and one of the most special players ever to give his prime years to MLS.