As the man most responsible for bringing David Beckham to Major League Soccer, Tim Leiweke knows that stars sell. Results? They’re more of an inexact science. But with Toronto FC bumbling through another basement-scraping season, the new president and CEO of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment Ltd., which counts TFC as part of its sports portfolio, is rolling the dice on more star-driven strategizing. Toronto FC's brief unbeaten streak ends with loss to Real Salt Lake Uruguay forward Diego Forlan, who played with Beckham at Manchester United for two seasons in the early part of the century, will be unveiled as Toronto FC’s newest designated player this week. It could happen as early as Monday or Tuesday, when the MLS international transfer window opens, and would make him available for selection for Saturday’s contest at Sporting Kansas City. As the winner of the Golden Ball – the best player in the last World Cup in South Africa, in large part thanks to his tournament-leading five goals as he led Uruguay to its best showing at soccer’s showcase event in 40 years – Forlan will bring a global appeal largely missing from the current TFC squad. He will also command a salary to match, with a multiyear, multimillion-dollar deal.
Toronto FC to snap up Uruguayan soccer star Diego Forlan
The Globe and Mail | Jul 8