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Fellinga and Vitti also Cut
December 17, 2009, 11:09 PM
Filed under: Lesly Fellinga, Pablo Vitti, Toronto FC

Toronto FC announced Thursday that the club has decided to not pick up the options on the following players for the 2010 MLS season; forward Pablo Vitti, midfielder Lesly Fellinga, and midfielder Amado Guevara. December 31 marks the end of their contracts with Toronto FC.

“After sitting with Preki, and the rest of the coaching staff, we have decided this is the direction the club would like to go,” said director of soccer Mo Johnston. “This leaves all players free to negotiate new deals with other clubs outside of MLS. We wish them all the best of luck in the future.”

Toronto FC technical staff will travel to the MLS Combine in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on January 8, before taking part in the MLS SuperDraft to be held in Philadelphia on January 14.

The team kicks off the 2010 MLS regular season on Saturday, March 27 against the Columbus Crew in Ohio.



Vitti adds an Argentine punch
March 16, 2009, 7:26 AM
Filed under: Pablo Vitti, Toronto FC

Pablo Vitti speaks very little English.

But the Argentine striker has no problem understanding his role with Toronto FC.

Signed early in training camp, the 23-year-old Vitti has been brought in to add some offensive punch to a team that scored just 34 goals in 30 games last season, tied for second worst in Major League Soccer.

So far, so good.

In the two games he played in the Carolina Challenge Cup here, Vitti looked comfortable in his new surroundings.

Up front alongside Chad Barrett, he often had the ball at his feet, made numerous strong runs, put in several nice crosses and sent teammates through on clear breaks at least a couple of times.

In a 2-1 win over D.C. United, Vitti started a pretty three-way passing play by putting a ball to Dwayne De Rosario, who sent a cross into Barrett who headed it into the net.

“We don’t speak the same language but are understanding each other on the field,” Vitti said through an interpreter of his quick connection with Barrett and De Rosario. “It’s easier to handle (the language barrier) with these guys because they’re good players.

“Ultimately, I see that this team has a lot of opportunities to score goals. There’s going to be a lot of offence.”

Vitti, who comes to Toronto on loan from Independiente of Buenos Aries, was part of the Argentine team that won the 2005 Under-20 World Cup in the Netherlands.

Vitti said he’s familiar with the MLS because many games are shown on TV in Argentina. He got a taste of Toronto last season when Independiente played TFC.

“When I came to play with my team in Toronto I liked the city, I liked the stadium, I liked the fans,” he said of the exhibition game. “I liked the whole set-up.”

The admiration was obviously mutual. After drilling a shot off the crossbar from 25 yards and later heading in the lone goal in the 68th minute for a 1-0 Independiente win, Toronto general manager Mo Johnston tried to sign Vitti but a deal wasn’t reached until February.

Vitti’s signing, along with the December trade for attacking midfielder and Scarborough native De Rosario, gives Toronto a much more potent attack as it embarks on its third MLS season, which begins Saturday night in Kansas City.

That was obvious in the team’s final pre-season tune-up here. They won two of three games, scored five goals and consistently were an offensive threat with the ball.

Vitti’s arrival means a more limited role for fan favourite Danny Dichio, 34, who coach John Carver brought into the last two games here in the latter part of the second half.

“I don’t think we’re going to get 90 minutes out of Danny every week so I’m going to use him sparingly,” said Carver, who wants to employ Dichio’s height and strength.

“He’s a different dimension,” Carver said. “When you’ve got the other two guys there everything goes to the feet but when Danny comes on you can mix it up a bit.”

De Rosario said practising with Vitti and watching his movements has led to “a good understanding of each other on the field.

“It’s going to take more time but it’s good so far.”

Barrett, who led the team with a combined nine goals last year in Chicago and Toronto, said he’s not surprised the newcomers have clicked into the lineup so easily.

“It’s really easy to just get into the groove with great players like that,” he said.

Source: Click Here



Shep Messing: TFC not happy with Dichio
February 19, 2009, 5:34 PM
Filed under: Danny Dichio, Pablo Vitti, Toronto FC

It’s unclear whether he’s out to lunch or not, but MLS pundit and former New York Cosmo (’cause who doesn’t love a former Cosmo?) Shep Messing dropped a flip one-liner about Danny Dichio in the latest edition of MLS Extra Time.

He said that Toronto was not happy with the big man because they didn’t like his “attitude.”

It doesn’t seem to fit — at all– but I put it out there for you to consider on its own merits. He does like the addition of Pablo Vitti, however. Gave him a four out of five.

Source: Click Here



Barrett excited by Vitti arrival
February 19, 2009, 3:14 PM
Filed under: Chad Barrett, MLS Preseason, Pablo Vitti, Toronto FC
The arrival of Pablo Vitti has increased the competition for places amongst Toronto FC’s forwards, but Chad Barrett is pleased with the signing of the striker and has been impressed by Vitti’s first week in training. Barrett played alongside Vitti for the first time in a preseason game against New York Red Bulls in Florida on Friday and both players scored within the first 13 minutes.”After the first few days playing alongside Pablo, it is easy to see that he brings a South American flair to the game which is really good for us,” said Barrett. “Amado has that flair as well and they combine really well together. Playing up top with Pablo it’s clear he likes to combine with the other forward and likes to play in tight spaces. He’s a great player with a good finishing ability and he will be a great asset to the team.”

Barrett hasn’t found the language barrier to be a problem and believes they are already learning how to play alongside each other. “He doesn’t speak English but we all speak football, so when we get on the field we click. He’s a really good player and once he gets fully comfortable and settled here he’ll do fine,” said Barrett.

At times last season goals were hard to come by for Toronto, but the team has been strengthened significantly during the winter following the arrival of Vitti, Dwayne De Rosario and SuperDraft pick O’Brian White. “It’s a great problem to have so many attacking players and it’s a tough decision for the coach because we have so many striking options going forward,” explained Barrett. “We still need to strengthen at the back but we have got some great players in here and I’m sure the fans are going to have a good time watching us going forward this year.”

Barrett first came into contact with Vitti in 2005 when they played against each other in the FIFA World Youth Championship in the Netherlands. Barrett scored the only goal of the game as the United States beat Vitti’s Argentina. “He hit the post about 10 minutes before I scored my goal,” said Barrett. “We haven’t talked about it yet because it would be a long conversation to have with a translator, but that was a good game and the one I remember the most. He probably remembers winning the tournament.”

Check out Toronto FC TV on Friday for the latest episode of Season Three, our series building up to the start of the new season. This episode focuses on Vitti’s arrival in Toronto.

 

Source: Click Here



TFC Returns Home
February 17, 2009, 3:56 PM
Filed under: MLS Preseason, Pablo Vitti, Toronto FC

Toronto FC returned to BMO Field on Tuesday to continue preseason training after spending last week training in Bradenton Fla. The Reds will train in Toronto for the rest of the week before returning to Florida on Friday. Coach John Carver is happy with what has been achieved so far. “I’m delighted with what we had last week,” said Carver. “It’s the best preseason I have had in my entire career. The atmosphere was fantastic and the work we did was great. The buzz around the place is still the same as it was on the first day we came back for preseason and hopefully it will stay like that right up to the first game.”

Carver enjoyed the week in Florida but is pleased to be back in Toronto now. “It was great to train on grass and enjoy the weather and it was a good chance to see some of the new guys play. The whole week went exactly as we planned it. Just when we were getting towards the end of our stint in Bradenton I knew it was time to come home because when you’re living in each others pockets for so long, you can start to get on each others nerves. It was very important to get back here so that some of the guys could find somewhere to live. I had the problem last year when I had to live in a hotel for three months and it is much better to get settled in your own house. Nearly all of the guys who have come in this year are now sorted with accommodation.”

On Tuesday the players were given a fitness test to measure their progress. They then played a series of short games with 11 against 11, and after lunch spent time in the gym. “We’re on a different surface here so you have to condition the body in a different way to make sure that the players are ready to play on the turf throughout the season,” said Carver.

Pablo Vitti trained at BMO Field for the first time after joining the team in Florida last week, and Carver has been impressed with the Argentine striker. “He scored a goal in his first game against New York and he has shown he is a very good finisher. His movement is second to none and he plays on the shoulder of the centre half and looks to get in behind people. He’s technically very comfortable and works hard when he is not in possession of the ball. His all round game is good and he seems ready now to kick start his career. He had huge potential as a young player and hopefully he can fulfil that here,” said Carver.

Source: Click Here



Vitti to wear #8
February 14, 2009, 2:42 PM
Filed under: Announcement, Pablo Vitti, Toronto FC

His name is Pablo Vitti, or now call him “The Ocho”. Confirmed by TFCnews.ca, the new Toronto FC striker will wear #8 upon the colour TFC Red.

Vitti, 23, joins from FC Chernomorets Odessa of the Ukrainian Premier League where he was on loan from Independiente of Argentina.

Toronto FC fans may remember Vitti from last summer when Independiente paid a visit to BMO Field on July 15. Vitti scored the lone goal in the game in the 68th minute to give the visitors a 1-0 victory. His best season was in 2004/05 when he played for his hometown club Rosario Central when he scored eight goals in 29 appearances.

Vitti was part of the Argentina U-20 squad that competed at the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship in the Netherlands where Argentina defeated Nigeria for the title.



Reds end week in Florida
February 14, 2009, 9:48 AM
Filed under: Chad Barrett, MLS Preseason, Pablo Vitti, Toronto FC

Toronto FC wrapped up the week in Florida by playing two 50 minute games against the New York Red Bulls on Friday afternoon. The contest was designed to give as many players as possible the chance to have 50 minutes of competitive action.

Toronto FC won the first game 2-1 with goals from Pablo Vitti and Chad Barrett, and the second 50 minute period of play finished 2-0 in favour of the Red Bulls.

For full details on game one, click here. For game two, click here.

The second game of the afternoon failed to live up to the drama of the first. Toronto FC went close in the 10th minute of play when Johan Smith played in Gabe Gala down the left wing, but Jon Conway was able to deal with the cross. Five minutes later, Fuad Ibrahim shot over the bar from 25 yards out with chances at a premium.

New York took the lead in the 38th minute through Matthew Mbuta. He finished past Brian Edwards after being fed the ball by Lionel St. Preux.

The Red Bulls doubled their advantage with just three minutes left to play when Mbuta was fouled in the penalty area. St. Preux stepped up and scored from the spot.

Game two TFC starting line-up: Brian Edwards, Gabe Gala, Kevin Harmse, Nana Attakora, Marvell Wynne (Gregory Richardson 29′), Johann Smith (Kyle Hall 18′), Amadou Sanyang, Rohan Ricketts, Fuad Ibrahim, Danny Dichio, Ebrima Bojang

The players will return to Toronto on Saturday and continue preseason training at BMO Field next week.

Bradenton results:

Sunday: TFC vs. U.S. Under 20s – Won 2-1
Tuesday: TFC vs. Chicago Fire – Lost 1-0
Friday: TFC vs. New York Red Bulls – Won 2-1, Lost 2-0