Toronto FC jettisoned two of its highest priced players yesterday in separate trades coach Mo Johnston hopes will upgrape his struggling side.
Gone is U.S. national team striker Conor Casey and MLS veteran midfielder Richard Mulrooney.
Casey was sent packing to Colorado Rapids in return for future draft choices plus the right to negotiate a deal with unsigned rookie John O'Reilly.
Mulrooney was traded to Dallas FC in return for 24-year-old defender Kevin Goldthwaite.
The end result is that Johnston clears a lot of salary that he could use to bring in a major international player such as Poland's Janek Bak.
"It's addition by subtraction," Johnston agreed yesterday after a spirited team practice at BMO Field.
Goldthwaite was at practice in his new uniform along with former English premier division striker Danny Dichio and the MLS 2006 No. 1 draft pick Marvel Wynne -- who were both acquired this week.
"I have been trying to do this for the past couple of months," the coach said. "By adding Danny we knew we were getting a presence up front; someone who could hold the ball up and be an aerial threat.
"Now we also have the two wide guys we needed in the back with Goldthwaite and Marvel Wynne. And as a bonus we save a lot of money."
Johnston denied the trades were panic moves based on the two season-opening losses.
"We had to make these changes to make this team better," Johnston said. The only snag is a visa snag that could keep Dichio out of the lineup
"I just hope we can hurry up the visa process that would allow Dichio to play next week," Johnston said.
Dichio laughed yesterday at the possibility that if he should get clearance to play in the hone and home series against Kansas City Wizards, his first goal could also very well be the first MLS goal ever for TFC.
"If I score the first goal and it helps the team, that's good," Dichio, 32, said.
Dichio had a favourable first impression.
"I was surprised at the quick pace of practice," Dichio said.
"I played against Carl (Robinson) in the premiership and with Andy (Welsh) in Sunderland. I am not a complete stranger here."