Before I get started on the meat of this post I want to make a pledge that this will be the absolute last time I ever write about Dwayne de Rosario other than in the context going forward of when he is scheduled to be an opponent for Toronto FC in future games.
Nevermore will I re-hash the “cut me a cheque” thing, the whingeing, the lies he may or may not have been told by Mo or Earl or Aron, the “Celtic Episode” or any of it ever again in this space.
If only Dwayne would pledge to do the same and just move on.
Earlier this week in an article posted on ESPN (http://es.pn/derosario) Dwayne spoke to Leander Schaerlaeckens about his (to me well deserved) 2011 MVP award, his trades last season from Toronto and New York, his contract status and of course the fling over in Scotland he had with Celtic this January past. If you have not checked it out yet its well worthy of a read. The arguments have all been made before and once you scratch past the surface of what Dwayne is saying about his time in Toronto in this interview and how it all ended here there is not really anything new content wise worthy of discussing here.
Dwayne says that TFC screwed up over the Celtic thing. Maybe. Maybe not. TFC has said repeatedly that they did nothing wrong. Dwayne complains again and again about the size of his pay packet since his Houston days, all contracts he willingly signed and all contracts by the way he asked to be renegotiated while they were all in force dating back to 2006. Dwayne complains of promises made to him that were broken, promises he felt he did not need to get in writing. Sounds like a lot of blame to go around for me. I was a little surprised as to how the Red Bulls handled his trade to DC, but since I hate the Red Bulls their dysfunction is their own, and I care little about them.
I am glad that Dwayne got his MVP award this year. And I hope that he finally gets to clock the dollars he feels he is entitled to clock in Washington DC or somewhere else in the years he has left in this league. And without a doubt on the field he has cemented his place as one of the best Canadian players ever and one of the absolute best to ever play a game in Major League Soccer.
But what was for me the saddest part of what came through in this piece and what I think taints for me the entire DeRo in Toronto saga, is the fact that once again a chance for Dwayne to step up and take on even a small amount of responsibility for how things ended in Toronto was missed.
Dwayne may indeed have been wronged, and knowing in particular the previous regime at TFC and how they operated I would not be surprised on the aggregate if DeRo has a case. If things went perfectly DeRo would still be here and the Reds would be in the playoffs would they not? But where was the apology for the cheque thing? Where was the apology for becoming an off field distraction for a struggling team that needed anything but an off field distraction? Yes he may not have been given the respect he deserved based on the success he has had in his MLS career. Yes he was probably grossly underpaid for a lot of years and the clock is ticking on how many big paydays in the game Dwayne has left as a professional.
But no longer do I care.
I wish him all the best. And I will look forward to seeing him in the Canadian shirt when he plays for his country in the World Cup qualifying campaign. But when it comes to Toronto FC Dwayne is ancient history for me.