The Toronto Football Club is already experiencing drama for the 2020 training camp. It was confirmed this week that Michael Bradley would undergo a technical and complicated surgery for his right ankle. This follows after a significant injury on November 10th at the MLS Finals against Seattle. Multiple players expressed their vocal anger towards the TFC coaching staff for this delayed surgery, with Bradley having to wait three months for confirmation. The most vocal player regarding this late surgery was Jozy Altidore. He slammed the coaching staff for mishandling this situation and expressed that it concerns all players if they were to face serious injuries. Altidore made these comments to reporters beside his head coach, Greg Vanney.
Coaches versus Players
Jozy Altidore told reporters not to mistake his opinion, that this situation was handled poorly by Greg Vanney and his fellow coaches. Michael Bradley became injured three months ago, and this is the 1st time that TFC is acknowledging surgery. Now we won’t have our captain until June, which is shameful after Michael remained with TFC for a substantial pay cut. The statements made by Altidore weren’t falsified, Bradley has remained loyal to Toronto for ten years and has always remained a professional captain. Being treated in this manner shows a severe sign of disrespect that’s unwarranted by all players.
Greg Vanney has slowly become hated amongst players and supporters of Toronto FC. When Altidore slammed the gauntlet down on coaching staff, Vanney merely sighed towards these comments and said that his players are entitled to their opinions. Analysts suspect that this will create significant tension amongst players and coaching staff, which will lead to the inevitable termination of Greg Vanney. He was almost terminated earlier last season after underperforming and receiving complaints from team investors. His actions towards Bradley seem to be a backlash towards these complaints.
This isn’t the first time that Jozy Altidore has gone against his coaches or team investors. The striker made $6.33 million last year, even after he made enemies with Bill Manning. He said that the TFC President was allowing his ego to hurt players, which followed after he’d banned Giuseppe Gueli from training with TFC. This was because Gueli still had contact with Sebastian Giovinco after he left the team. It was a personal vendetta that resulted in TFC losing the 2018 MLS Season.
When it applies to Michael Bradley, most sporting analysts believe that his injury from Seattle was intentional. Roman Torres, a defenceman for Seattle, attempted to shoot on the net and struck Bradley’s right ankle. It prompted a significant fracture of cartilage and tendons, which take months to heal. The injury followed 32 minutes into the game and allowed Seattle to have a substantial advantage over TFC.