The headline around Toronto and in soccer circles is
based on the news that Dwayne De Rosario is
coming to Toronto from Houston Dynamo to play for the
Toronto FC in exchange for Julius James an allocation
I was not overly surprised since I was aware that TFC
had De Rosario in their radar for quite some time.
Toronto has arguably the most knowledgeable and most
enthusiastic fans in the country and the pressure was
on the Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment organization
to try and sign De Rosario after every game he played at
Dwayne De Rosario is the most decorated Canada male
player in the region and his on field accomplishments is
based on his ability to break down defenses and score
goals. Dwayne can change a game in a matter of minutes
and although he is at the ripe age of 30, he still has
the potential to score in bunches and take over a game.
After having signed a number of offensive players in
2008, the Reds was the second worse scoring team in the
league with 34 goals, while having an arrears of 43 on
defense. As a result TFC management was on the hunt
after they found themselves up a creek after holding
the MLS record for futility with 824 scoreless minutes
So the choice of De Rosario seem completely logical
since Dwayne was voted the Most Valuable Player of two
MLS Cups and if you are not familiar with De Rosario
game, then believe me when I say that his back to back
titles for Goal of the Year is Dwayne’s soccer
With all Dwayne accolades as a player his team the
Houston Dynamo fell short in their quest for a their
third consecutive MLS Championship after losing to New
York Bulls and just like that Dwayne De Rosario was in
It is a tough business but a marquee player in the MLS
such as Dwayne would have had a list of teams to chose
from and TFC must have been high if not the top of that
list. It would also surprise me if Dwayne De Rosario did
not have a concern with the artificial turf at BMO Field
since he was accustomed to playing on natural grass at
the Houston Dynamo.
Although this deal has been advertised as a win-win
situation for all involved, a happy De Rosario would be
on natural grass at BMO Field which would be a good
situation for the Reds fans. With such a favorable
scenario TFC could easily be ranked in the first seven
in scoring of the 14+ teams MLS next season.
The Reds supporters are rated as the best in Major
League Soccer, and as a result they deserves a clicking
offense which would certainly bring more excitement and
enthusiasm to the already projected sold out BMO Field
crowd for 2009. The Supporter Clubs chants would
certainly hit another decibel level as the Reds look to
break their home wins and undefeated record.
Hopefully, TFC management noticed that the Beckham lead
LA Galaxy scored 62 goals on offense and with their high
attendance was still unable to make the MLS play offs in
the two seasons with Beckham. Dwayne De Rosario on the
other hand has never missed the MLS playoff, so the
onus is on GM. Mo Johnson and TFC coach Carver to
provide him with the players to keep De Rosario play off
streak in tact.
There should be no excuse in 2009 since BMO Field was
sold out before the De Rosario trade and it is not a
secret that Dwayne De Rosario acquisition is to try to
get the Reds to the playoffs. Although a good offense
can be a good defense it is obvious that the Galaxy did
adopt that concept and gave up a league high 55 goals in
To get the best out of De Rosario, coach Carver would
have to be put him in the center of the field where he
is most comfortable and productive to accomplish their
play off objective. The Reds would ALSO have to acquire
some potent flankers on both side of the field since
they lacked speed on their flanks last season as their
flankers took forever to evade their defenders and the
offensive plays became predictable and less penetrative.
De Rosario on Africa
By Aldwyn Mc Gill (Caribbean Camera Newspaper)
De Rosario of Scarborough, Ontario is one of the most if
not the most decorated soccer player in Canada. Last
September he was presented with his second consecutive
Canadian Male Player of the Year award and in November
he scored the winning goal in the MLS Championship final
to help his Houston Dynamo team win their second
consecutive MLS Championship Cup.
De Rosario was voted MVP of the MLS
Championship Cup and based on his team winning the MLS
Cup, they will
play in the
CONCACAF Champions Cup
against CSD Municipal of Guatemala in March.
To add to his recent playing
accomplishments, De Rosario was asked to represent
the MLS and a number of organizations on a mission to
Mali, West Africa, to provide support and assistance to
the people there. As a resulted of his latest off field
exploits, I felt the time was right to get an interview
with De Rosario to have a feel for what cloud of
humility he rode on his return flight to Houston from
Q: How are you doing and how
are things in Houston?
A: Things are going very well
considering we just won our second MLS cup back-to back
and looking forward to the challenges next year.
Q: How was your trip to Africa?
A: It was a great
educational experience, going to the motherland. They
were some real special moments and some eye
opening ones, but the whole trip was special and I was
grateful to have the opportunity to be a part of
something so important. Check out my bogs on Houston
Dynamo web site.
Q: I understand you were chosen to
represent the MLS and several other organizations on a
mission to Mali, Africa. What was the purpose of the
trip and do you think that you achieve your objective?
A: the purpose of the trip
was to attend the Integrated child Health Campaign
and observe and participate in the distribution of Long
Lasting Insecticide treated bed nets for pregnant
mothers and children under 5yrs, polio vaccinations,
vitamin A for measles and albendazole for deforming. I
felt like I achieved my goal seeing first hand this
epidemic, Malaria. The effect it has on people’s life,
their tradition and of course the number of deaths from
this curable disease and trying to spread awareness to
the Malian people and the people in North America.
Around 2.8 million bed nets were provided in one week,
so that hopefully is saving a substantial amount of
lives especially the children.
Q: Were you surprise to be
selected as one of the representative of the trip?
A: Diego Gutierrez from
Chicago Fire was leading the campaign and had asked me
if I was interested in helping to spread awareness and
the purchasing of insecticide treated bed nets. He gave
me the details and I didn't even second guess, told him
that I will feel honored and the rest is history.
Q: Did the trip help you as a person and
did it change your perspective on life?
A: I think a trip like this
helps one to appreciate the small things in life and how
not to take things for granted. Just to know that I can
help aid people in Africa was a beautiful feeling and
the graphic images that we encountered will stay in my
thoughts for ever.
Q: It was reported that you were also
representing the Canadian Soccer Association on the
trip. I don't understand the link. I though it was an
MLS initiated program?
A: Yes it was a MLS
initiated program but I am still Canadian and represent
my country wherever I go, that is the thing about being
professional. I represent myself, my family, Canadians
and MLS because that is who I am and how people identify
with me. I think this is a great program for people to
educate themselves on and try to participate in aiding
poorer countries and I feel so much could and should be
done towards building a stronger and brighter future for
Q: Switching to the soccer
scene, I got the impression that you are also dependent
on, to keep things in tact on the Canadian team. Am I
Yes most definitely, especially as a senior, our job is
to set the example for the younger players and fans, and
to awaken the CSA and others towards our goals
and dreams. We need
the support of everyone to make this work.
Q: In my interview with Julian De Guzman he
said that you were the player that he looks up to as his
big brother. Did you know that he looked up to you in
Yes, well Julian and I go back,” donkey years". He was
always a very talented player with ambition and growing
up in Scarborough, going through certain situations with
family and our environment was very similar and it took
a lot for us to continue towards our dream without
falling off the tracks. He is a player of great
creativity and his maturity is really starting to show
making him an even more complete and seasoned person and
pro. I am very happy for him and his achievements and
enjoy playing on the same National team, he is a true
Character at times but when it's all said and done he
steps up and that's all you can ask.
Q: The last time you and I
spoke you thought that you could get better with age.
Do you think there is still more to your game or were
you implying that there may be areas of your game that
you would like to work on?
A: Who said I was getting
older? Yes well my father is my biggest critic. My
father keeps me honest and disciplined, always pointing
out things that I can improve on. I try to stay as
honest as possible always working on parts of my
game and then putting it into practice. My brothers make
sure that I am focused also, so I am blessed with a lot
of family support.
Q: Correct me if I am wrong
but your pro career started with the
Toronto Lynx of the A-League, then you
of the German Second Division
and then to the
of the USL. You are in Major League
Soccer (MLS) seven seasons now. Is it safe to say that
this is the league that you may end your career or are
you still open to an offer to play in Europe?
A: Yes that is true. In
terms of ending my career in MLS, I can't say. There is
a lot of clubs and countries where I wouldn't mind
playing but as a family man it has to be the right
Q: How would you compare the
level of play in the MLS to the leagues you played
A: MLS is a great league and
does not get the recognition on a global scale. But it
is new compared to league's that has been around for
generations. I think now you are starting to see that
change with big name signings, European exposure and the
general public is starting to catch on. The level in
terms of play I always thought was good; it's physical
and a skillful league.
Q: What would you attribute your team
(Houston Dynamo) success in winning back to back MLS
Championship and how was it possible after you guys
moved from San Jose
to Houston in the off season?
Character! That's our main reason why we did well. The
transition was ruff when we relocated but after we got
settled it reflected in our play.
Q: Your Houston Dynamo has
now won back to back MLS Championship, your
accomplishment as a player is endless, you’ve just
traveled on behalf of the league, sponsors, team etc. Is
there any thing that you would want to accomplish before
your retire as a player?
A: The World Cup! Now let's
all try to make that happen.
Q: Would you return to
Canada if Toronto FC made you a good offer?
A: The million dollar question! I
love Toronto, born and raised in Scarborough, but again
the offer has to be right. I know my family and friends
would love to see me there but I have accomplished so
much with coach Dominic from San Jose to Houston and
still continuing our success, so for me to just pick up
and leave it means that the offer must be right.
Q: What do you think of the atmosphere at the
Toronto FC home games? Did you honestly think that the
city of Toronto could have responded so favorably to a
A: The response from the
fans didn't surprise me at all. It was just nice to see
the people who have passion and love the game show there
support. growing up and playing club soccer in Toronto
was a blessing for me cause Toronto is a diverse city
with a knowledgeable football” soccer", community. It
was a great feeling watching Toronto play there first
home game and I just hope it's continues to grow.
Q: What do you think of Canada’s chances in
the World Cup qualifying especially if you get by SVG in
the second round into the group of death with Jamaica,
Mexico and Honduras?
A: Let's not get beside
ourselves, SVG is a country like us trying to qualify
and we have to concentrate on them before anything else.
The second round is something I am anticipating but the
focus must be on SVG. This game I think would be a good
test and opportunity to get together as a team. Q: As the MLS league champions your team
Houston Dynamo has made it to the CONCACAF Champions
Cup. Your first leg game is on March 11 or 12, and the
second leg on the 18 or 20. Does that mean that you may
not be available to play for Canada in a friendly during
A: Well this is an
important tournament for us as so is preparation for the
qualifiers. For now I pray that I stay healthy and when
the time comes make the right decision.
Season Greetings, Bless.