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Who we Were (Part 7): Warren Creavalle

Tried hard, but wasn’t that good at defending.

Toronto FC v Columbus Crew SC

Warren Creavalle first arrived in Toronto after he was traded from Houston Dynamo on July 23, 2014 in order for the Dynamo to acquire the number one allocation spot that helped Houston acquire DaMarcus Beasley. He came as a bit of a backup player who could play across a variety of defensive positions, such as right-back (which is where he mainly played), defensive midfield, and even left-back — which he really never played at Toronto FC.

In 2014, Mark Bloom had his breakout season with Toronto FC, so his chances were really limited, though he saw his time increase as Mark Bloom got injured near the end of the season, and would then be out for the next year and a half. This was Creavalle’s time to prove that he was the better player, but he really never did that. He played 612 minutes (10 games) for Toronto FC in his first half-season with them, but despite Bloom’s injury, he wouldn’t lock down the starting right-back position in 2015.

In 2015, he only played four more games than in 2014, playing in 14, and racking up 730 minutes in his second season with the team. The fans gave him a break for his first season, because he was a little on the younger side (24 years old) and he was new to the team. In 2015 he didn’t have as many excuses.

Fans, including me, were beginning to lose patience with him — as he was part of the problem in Toronto FC’s league-worst defence. As well, his overall defensive skills seemed very sub-par for a league like MLS. He really seemed like a player who was completely out of position. After just over a year of Warren Creavalle playing for Toronto FC, he was traded on August 7, 2015 to Philadelphia Union, for a second round pick in the 2016 MLS SuperDraft.

Interestingly enough, that second-round pick was eventually traded to Seattle Sounders (who drafted Tony Alfaro) in exchange for Eriq Zaveleta. It’s pretty interesting to see how the MLS trade system works!

Toronto FC v Chicago Fire Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Overall, I believe that the trade to get Warren Creavalle was not a good one. Although he was still developing and perhaps the argument could have been made that TFC should’ve given him some more time, it was evident that his defensive skills weren’t there, even though he was labeled as a defensive player.

Like all players who come to Toronto FC, we hope that he would’ve played up to standard, but sometimes you have to know when to cut your losses and move them on. In all fairness to him though, despite his lack of technical skills he was one of the fitter players on the team and was a hard worker on the pitch.

Ever since then, he’s continued to play for Philadelphia, recording 3,199 minutes for the Union, in 62 games. He got his most playing time in 2016 where he operated as a starting defensive midfielder for Philadelphia, starting 21 games. His playing time has slowly dwindled over the last two seasons though, and at the end of the 2018 season he probably will leave the Union, as he is out of contract and new sporting director Ernst Tanner suggested that Warren Creavalle has received an offer to move to a new team outside MLS, but we’re not quite sure who that would be.

Creavalle is certainly one of the more unknown players of the ‘Bloody Big Deal’ era and post-era, but he did play enough games to have a significant impact on the team — whether it was for the better or worse.