Toronto FC midfielder Matias Laba (20) during the game against the New York Red Bulls at BMO Field. (Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports)

Matías Laba and the Looming Release from Toronto FC


Apparently you can have too much of a good thing. Toronto FC has gone through a public metamorphosis lately, but the addition of great players means that they have one too many players occupying a DP slot. The league mandates that each team gets a maximum of three Designated Player slots. These DP slots allow a team to spend more money on talent who would otherwise make bank in another league. Toronto, however, has four: English striker Jermain Defoe, USMNT midfielder Michael Bradley, Brazilian striker Gilberto, and the man in question, Matías Laba.

Laba was Toronto’s lone DP last season. The Argentinian midfielder signed half way through the season and started just 16 games. He was one of the better players on the 2013 Toronto FC, but when the entire team is pretty lousy, it’s hard to get any help. (<*cough– cough- jozyaltidore-cough*>)

Now the 2014 approaches and the Reds must figure out what they will do with Laba. “I love Matty,” manager Ryan Nelsen told “I brought him in, so we will try and move hell and high water to try and keep the man.”

But unless, Laba wants to take a massive pay cut, Toronto will be forced to get rim of him. Luckily, there is a way that they won’t lose his services forever — loaning a player does not count against the count of DP’s. Laba is still young, he hasn’t even gotten close to the prime of his career. If he is loaned out, it could be a nice investment for future seasons.

Among other Toronto FC news, it looks like there will be a veteran goalkeeper joining them soon. Reports say that Julio Cesar, a former Serie A Goalkeeper of the Year, is set to join Toronto. This is a great addition for Toronto as the continue once again to improve on paper.

The season is still 4 weeks away, but will all the additions work for Ryan Nelson? It will be one of the biggest story lines of 2014. The work done in Toronto is rare to see; I follow almost every American sport, and I can’t remember a bigger offseason makeover in any league. However it doesn’t really matter if it doesn’t succeed.

Tags: Matías Laba MLS Toronto Fc

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