Good Move? Bad Move? Time Will Tell!
For the second time in three days, the Vancouver Whitecaps are bidding adieu to a key player.
On Wednesday it was Davide Chiumiento, and on Friday the Frenchman Sebastien Le Toux was dispatched to the New York Red Bulls for Jamaican midfielder Dane Richards and allocation money, which can be used to provide more flexibility to pay players or get under the salary cap.
This move was another shocker in a week that is radically reforming the team that has been a force in the Western Conference of the MLS this season.
Le Toux had just joined the team at the beginning of this season from Philadelphia and brought a wide range of skills. He integrated into the team very swiftly and had featured in every game this year except for the July 4th
A great loss
Le Toux’s greatest value is as a true two player and he will be greatly missed in this regard. He potted 4 goals and managed an assist moving forward for the Whitecaps in 19 games.
However, he was even more influential for his defensive prowess.
Good teams work from the front to protect the back and Le Toux was excellent at harrying other teams when the ‘Caps were without the ball.
He would work from box to box every game, covering several miles/ kilometres every match.
Le Toux was great in the locker room too, gelling well with his teammates and providing redoubtable veteran leadership.
The return on the trade
Dane Richards is the balance of this exchange and he provides speed and a wide presence to get the ball up to the forward men.
The Jamaican was the second leader in appearances for the New York Red Bulls with 147 games played. He has tallied 21 goals for New York in five years, but has only posted one strike in 2012.
There is speculation that the movement of Chiumiento and Le Toux is a combined gambit to clear salary and space for the acquisition of a significant forward to bolster the attack.
If it does transpire that way, then it could be a season defining move, but in this corner the loss of the Frenchman is an awfully big risk to overcome.
We will miss you Sebastien