VANCOUVER, BC - MARCH 19: Eric Hassli #29 of the Vancouver Whitecaps FC celebrates his goal and the Whitecaps first inaugural goal against the Toronto FC during their match March 19, 2011 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/Getty Images)
Eric Hassli will head to Toronto FC and give the Reds the striker they need to replace the injured Danny Koevermans.
Once Danny Koevermans tore his ACL, Toronto FC knew they needed to find themselves a striker and on Friday they did by acquiring Eric Hassli from the Vancouver Whitecaps. The Reds will send a first round pick in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft and an international slot to Vancouver to get Hassli, who scored 10 goals for the Whitecaps last season before falling out of favor at BC Place this year.
"Adding a player of Eric’s ability gives an immediate improvement to our club," said Toronto FC Head Coach and Director of Soccer Operations Paul Mariner. "He has had a lot of success in this league and we are pleased to bring him to Toronto."
The question is whether improving their club matters much at this point. Toronto is at the bottom of the Eastern Conference on just 19 points, 12 back of the final playoff spot. While they needed a replacement for the injured Koevermans, did they need one now? What do they really have to play for? Toronto might have been better served waiting until the winter and reevaluating their options then, especially since their SuperDraft pick figures to be a very high one and they are just giving that away so that they could get better in a season where they are basically done.
On the flip side, the overhaul at BC Place continues. Few teams have ever made as many midseason moves as the Whitecaps have this season and that they are already a good team makes it all the more weird, but they are getting assets so the value has been good. That is especially true here, where they got a great draft pick and a ton of cap flexibility that should give them a chance to build a great team for the long-term, even if it hurts them short-term.