Skip to main content
Canada’s most-awarded newsroom for a reason
Enjoy unlimited digital access
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
Canada’s most-awarded newsroom for a reason
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
// //

Toronto FC's Sebastian Giovinco (10) is taken down during a game against Montreal Impact in Toronto, August 27, 2016.

Fred Thornhill/The Canadian Press

Toronto FC coach Greg Vanney says his team can benefit from what he hopes is a brief spell without Sebastian Giovinco.

The star striker suffered quadriceps and adductor strains in Toronto's 1-0 Major League Soccer loss to Montreal on Saturday, and the team announced he would miss four weeks.

Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Vanney painted a brighter picture.

Story continues below advertisement

"We are optimistic his recovery will be shorter than estimated," he said.

While Vanney acknowledged that Toronto will not be able to replace the skill and creativity Giovinco brings to the table, he said his offence has the talent to cause problems without the Italian and can give the opposition new looks on offence.

"Sebastian is a guy who can turn nothing into something really quickly, but without him we've got a target striker in Jozy (Altidore), we've got very mobile players who are capable with the ball," Vanney said.

He also said that they can deploy an offence with more size in Giovinco's absence. Dubbed "The Atomic Ant," the skilled but diminutive Giovinco stands five foot four.

"If we get wide and get crosses in the box, we have more size in the box theoretically," he said.

Still, Vanney acknowledged that Toronto will have to create its opportunities from "collective play" minus the individual brilliance of Giovinco, who has 17 goals and 13 assists in 29 appearances between MLS and the Amway Canadian Championship.

"To be honest, no one can pull off a play like Seba can pull off a play, and no one can change a game in this league like Seba can change a game, so that's a real factor."

Story continues below advertisement

But he said that a chance to prove TFC can play well without Giovinco will only strengthen the team when the reigning league MVP returns.

Despite the loss to Montreal, Vanney said he was pleased with how last week played out. Toronto won 2-1 in Orlando on Wednesday to move into first place in the Eastern Conference.

The Reds are off until Sept. 10, when they visit the Chicago Fire. The break comes at a welcome time as Toronto is also without midfielder Jay Chapman (knee) and defender Ashtone Morgan (foot).

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies