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DeRo eyes Grass & MoJo says No to Ronnie O
January 24, 2009, 12:10 AM
Filed under: BMO Field, Dwayne DeRosario, Former TFC Players

Dwayne De Rosario asked to be traded to his hometown Toronto FC even though the Major League Soccer team plays its home games on artificial turf at BMO Field.

De Rosario’s former team, the Houston Dynamo played on grass at home.

Whenever De Rosario visited BMO Field either with the Dynamo or with the Canadian national team he would be asked about the artificial turf and he would say that he does not like it.

Nothing has changed his feelings about artificial turf, he said Thursday after the news conference to introduce the all-star midfielder and his new four-year contract.

He’s willing to deal with it but he also expressed optimism that there might be grass at BMO Field some day.

“There have been some promising discussions going on about there being grass which John [head coach Carver] and Mo [manager Johnston] spoke to me about.” he said. “I’m looking forward to that.”

He knows the grass won’t be installed at BMO Field by the next growing season and that it will be a long process.

“A lot of things come into to play,” he said. “But I’m hoping sooner than later there will be grass.”

More likely the team will have a grass training field first.

“I’ve never played on turf since I was a kid,” De Rosario said. “Now I’m 30 so I know it takes a toll out of you. I know we have great trainers.

“If we could train on grass I think that would help a lot. But for me personally I need to train a little bit on the turf so see how the ball rolls and get used to it again.”

BMO Field’s artificial turf was a reason that TFC traded another all-star midfielder, Ronnie O’Brien, last February to the expansion San Jose Earthquakes. O’Brien was returning from knee surgery and it was felt that he needed to do most of his playing on grass because of it.

Toronto received allocation money and San Jose’s 2009 first-round draft pick in that deal, the second choice overall as it turned out, and took Wake Forest midfielder Sam Cronin with the choice last week.

Now O’Brien has been released by San Jose. The move took place on Thursday and was for salary purposes. O’Brien made $259,000 last season and San Jose could not reach an agreement with him on a new contract.

“The number they came back with was really low,” O’Brien said. “It wouldn’t have taken much more to keep me here.”

One reason San Jose let O’Brien go is that the Earthquakes apparently are clearing salary cap space for a forward.

General manager John Doyle said he tried to trade O’Brien but there were no takers.

Toronto FC says it has no interest in bringing O’Brien back.

Source: Click Here

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