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Jesse Marsch smiles when asked if he ever expected CF Montreal owner Joey Saputo to contribute to his paycheque again.

Marsch coached the Montreal Impact, as the team was then known, to a more-than-respectable 12-16-6 record in its 2012 debut season in MLS.

“This is not a dismissal or a resignation,” Saputo said at the time, explaining that Marsch and team management had differences of opinion on how the team should be run.

Now Saputo, along with the ownership of Toronto FC and the Vancouver Whitecaps as well as other private donors, have made “major philanthropic contributions” to help facilitate the hiring of Marsch as coach of the Canadian men’s national men.

“I just got a text from Joey about 10 minutes ago,” Marsch said in an interview Tuesday from Tuscany, Italy. “I went to see him in Bologna [an Italian team also owned by Saputo] and then I saw his son Luca, who’s also working at Bologna. I have to tell you that Joey and I have come together in a really good way.

“I always tried my best for Joey and I knew I made a lot of mistakes. I was a young coach. And he was willing to also acknowledge his faults and the things that he could have done better. And in the end, in this business, in the heat of the moment sometimes we’re all not at our best.

“And I always strive to be at my best when things are the most difficult,” he added. “That I think is the real measure of a person, a professional. And so I learned a lot from that experience. It made me better. I feel like I’m much more equipped to handle the difficulties and the challenges than I’ve ever been. And I’m excited to put that to practice here with Team Canada.”

Mauro Biello, who has served as interim Canada coach since John Herdman resigned last August to take over Toronto FC, was an assistant coach under Marsch with Montreal.

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