Soccer players never get tired of playing the game.

That’s what this page is all about.

Where your FIRST TOUCH SOCCER book ends, the FREE KICK page begins.

It’s a chance for you to learn more about Toronto F.C. … and for me to talk about some of the great stories I couldn’t squeeze into the book.

Scroll down to get the latest news … and to learn more about Canadian soccer. And check out some of the cool collectibles I have in my home.

Enjoy this site, check back whenever you like, and contact me with any questions or comments.

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Breaking News

What’s up with Toronto F.C.

October 1, 2020: Midfielder Alejandro Pozuela was named MLS Player of the Month for September. He scored four goals and had two assists in six games for the Reds.

July 16, 2020: 20-year-old forward Ayo Akinola scored a hat trick against the rival Montreal Impact in a narrow 4–3 victory. He had scored only two goals before that in his MLS career.

2020 Season Preview: Toronto fans will be cheering for Alejandro Pozuela and Jozy Altidore again in 2020, and keeping their fingers crossed that defensive star Michael Bradley recovers from ankle surgery. Pablo Piatti joins Toronto after starring for Spanish club RCD Espanyol.

November 10, 2019: The Reds made it all the way to the MLS Cup, but lost to the Seattle Sounders, 3–1. Jozy Altidore scored Toronto’s lone goal. Thanks to the play of Altidore and talented newcomer Alejandro Pozuela, Toronto had not lost a game since the beginning of August.

April 25, 2018: Toronto played CD Guadalajara in the deciding match of the CONCACAF Champions League final. The Reds lost 4–2 on penalty kicks. Jonathan Osorio and Sebastian Giovinco were named to the tournament’s Best XI team.

2018 Season Preview: Toronto returns one of the best-ever squads in league history, including Justin Morrow, Victor Vazquez and Sebastian Giovinco. The defense will be even stronger in 2018 thanks to the arrival of Dutch star Gregory van der Wiel.

December 9, 2017: In a rematch of the 2016 MLS Cup, Toronto faced the Seattle Sounders. The Reds won their first MLS title by a score of 2–0. Jozy Altidore was named MVP of the match. He and Victor Vazquez scored the team’s goals.

October 22, 2017: The Reds tied Atlanta United 2–2 in the last game of the year to finish with 69 points. That broke the MLS record for the most points in a season, which had been held by the LA Galaxy, with 68.

August 19, 2017: The Reds became the first MLS team to reach 50 points in 2017 when they beat the Chicago Fire, 3–1. Nicolas Hasler headed in the game-winner for his first MLS goal and Sebastian Giovinco put the game away with his 12th goal of the season.

May 10, 2017: The Reds scored an amazing comeback against the Columbus Crew, turning an 0–1 deficit into a 2–1 victory in the final 9 minutes. Both goals were set up by 21-year-old Raheem Edwards, a product of the team’s youth system. Edwards grew up in a Toronto suburb and always dreamed of playing for the club.

Major League Soccer & the MLS Cup

MLS Cup
(© Major League Soccer)

  • Toronto is a member of Major League Soccer (MLS), the top soccer league in North America. MLS played its first season in 1996 with 10 teams. In 2017, MLS had 22 teams. Each club plays 34 games in the regular season, followed by the playoffs. The MLS schedule stretches from March to December (including the playoffs). Most pro leagues around he world begin in the fall and end in the spring, leaving time for top players to compete in summer tournaments, such as the World Cup.

  • Much like other U.S. sports leagues, the MLS clubs with the best records compete in postseason playoffs. The winner of each conference advances to the MLS Cup, the league’s one-game championship final.

Collector’s Corner

Stefan Frei
(© The Upper Deck Company)

Danny Koevermans
(© Topps, Inc.)

More treasures from the author’s collection!

  • Stefan Frei — Goalkeeper
    2009–2013
    Stefan Frei was a first-round pick for Toronto FC in 2009 and helped the club win the Canadian Championship four years in a row. Frei was born in Switzerland and was a college star for the University of California before joining MLS.

  • Chad Barrett — Forward
    2008–2010
    Chad Barrett was one of the top defenders in MLS when Toronto traded for him in 2008. He helped the club win the Canadian Championship in 2009 and 2010.

  • Maurice Edu — Midfielder
    2007–2008
    Maurice Edu was a star for the University of Maryland before being drafted by Toronto. In his first MLS season, Edu played in 25 games and was named MLS Rookie of the Year.

  • Danny Koevermans — Forward
    2011–2012
    Danny Koevermans was a huge star in Europe before crossing the Atlantic to play for Toronto. His skill around the net helped him score 19 goals in 36 games.

Fun Facts

Danny Dichio
(Black Book Partners)

Did You Know?

• Toronto FC is owned by the same company that owns the NHL Toronto Maple Leafs and NBA Toronto Raptors.

• The first goal in team history was scored by Danny Dichio against the Chicago Fire. After retiring as a player in 2010, Dichio took over Toronto’s youth training academy.

• Each year Toronto plays the Columbus Crew for the Trillium Cup. Trillium is the official flower of Ontario and of Ohio. The Reds won the Cup in 2011, 2014, 2016, and 2017.

• In 2011, Toronto set a record by using 39 different players during the season.

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