During Toronto FC’s year-end media availability today, Richie Laryea and Jonathan Osorio provided some information about their status with the club and their desires to play on a bigger stage and the possibility of a move to Europe.
Throughout the season, there has been speculation regarding these players future, having featured regularly with TFC and the Canadian Men’s National team. Many pundits have targeted Laryea for an off-season move to Europe. Osorio’s contract is up this year, and it is up to Toronto FC to pick up his contract option for next year.
Laryea was asked a question regarding the need for a “shake-up” of the roster. He responded, “Everyone’s going to be looked at” after the club’s dismal season. He continued by saying, “we’re all in those conversations right now.”
Laryea was asked about his short term future, and his answer was clear, “I don’t know.” He elaborated, “I’ll see what happens in the next couple of weeks. I’ve said it’s a dream of mine to play in Europe, and I’ll stand by that to this day.”
He continued, “I also love playing for this club, and this is my hometown, they [Toronto FC] game me a second chance in MLS. I’ll see what happens. I want to stay open a lot of different things, and to challenge myself.”
Next, Jonathan Osorio was asked similar question about testing himself abroad and his short-term future. He responded, “I’ve always dreamed of going to Europe, to go abroad, and to test myself. That hasn’t changed.”
“I’ll always represent Toronto, the city and the club, whether I’m here or not here.”
- Jonathan Osorio
Osorio continued, “Next year is an option year. I can’t really say what’s in the future. As long as I’m here in Toronto, I’ll give my 100 per cent.” He added, “But I have expressed my desire to challenge myself.”
“I know it’s a business — the right situation has to happen for both sides. I just hope what I want is taken into account.”
When asked about a loan or permanent move, Osorio responded, “It has to be the right situation, and I’m open to anything—I’m trying to have the best career I can. I’ll always represent Toronto, the city and the club, whether I’m here or not here.”
Later in the afternoon, Bill Manning was asked about the futures of both players.
“Our job is to put the best team together,” replied Manning. “And Richie and Jonathan are both key guys that we want to stay here. Richie is under contract, Jonathan has an option, and we see them as anchors and we’re going to do what it takes to keep them here on this team and on this roster going forward.”
“We always will discuss players’ aspirations,” continued Manning. “But I think what we’re going to do going forward, I think both of these guys are going to want to be part of.”
As we’re left to speculate on Laryea and Osorio’s futures with the club, here’s an important point to consider - Canada is ranked no. 40 by FIFA, thus opening the door for Canadian players to play in England. The English FA follows the Government Body Endorsement (GBE) points system, which favours top 50 countries in the FIFA rankings.
The season finished Sunday afternoon, and we’ve seen significant upheaval at the club. Perhaps player movement is potentially unpredictable, as everything seems to be on the table with Toronto FC, including moving Laryea and Osorio.