Dwayne De Rosario recalled yesterday how his trade to Toronto FC from the Houston Dynamo came about - he asked for it.
The midfielder from Toronto and Major League Soccer all-star has a good relationship with Dynamo coach Dominic Kinnear, and after last season he made his request.
"I called Dom and said, 'I kind of feel like now is the right time to go back home,' " De Rosario said yesterday after a media conference. "He's a good friend of mine and he was open to what I had to say. And after that he said, 'Let me think about it.' "
The teams completed a deal last month. Toronto manager Mo Johnston got a player he had been pursuing for two years, De Rosario got to come home and the Dynamo got young defender Julius James and some allocation money.
The next thing Toronto FC and De Rosario did was work out a contract that went beyond the player's existing two-year agreement.
Two years were added to the contract, the deal was completed this week and Toronto made its delayed introduction of De Rosario at the Air Canada Centre yesterday.
The MLS salary limit for a player, other than a designated player, is $400,000 (U.S.) a season, and De Rosario made $325,000 this past season. His contract also has incentive clauses and bonuses.
In eight seasons in San Jose and Houston - five with the San Jose Earthquakes, who became the Dynamo - De Rosario has never missed the playoffs and has been on four MLS Cup winners, two in each city. He has scored the winning goal and been named the most valuable player in two of the championship games.
De Rosario is an important acquisition, and Toronto FC may not be done.
Johnston has been trying to land striker Pablo Vitti, who played last season for the Argentine club Independiente, and a centre back he wouldn't name, who is playing in England.
Independiente has been holding up a deal for Vitti, Johnston said. "The club held off on it a little bit," Johnston said.