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Toronto FC Bobby Smyrniotis

Toronto FC In Talks With Bobby Smyrniotis

By on August 14, 2023 0 3889 Views

Having established a footballing dynasty in Hamilton, Bobby Smyrniotis has once again picked up Major League Soccer interest.

As per The Athletic, the Forge FC boss has now emerged as a serious candidate for the vacant Toronto FC post and has already interviewed with the club. So to has former Whitecaps head coach Carl Robinson, with informal talks also occurring with men’s national team head coach John Herdman.

Smyrniotis is an astute tactician who has led Forge FC to four straight league finals in just as many years, winning three of them. The Forge boss had been considered for the CF Montreal job in the offseason, but not being Francophone soured the move for club brass. That’s certainly no issue for Toronto FC, however – and when it comes to numbers, Bobby’s spell at Forge looks favourable.

Forge FC Bobby Smyrniotis
Photo Credit: Jojo Yanjiao Qian / Forge FC

Beyond his steadfast success in Canada’s top flight domestic league, Symrniotis also led his CPL side to make history as the first domestic league club to feature in both the Concacaf League and, through success there, the Champions League. They’ve stood toe-to-toe with MLS clubs in the Canadian Championship, proving solid competitors despite a drastic difference in wage budget.

Forge owner Bob Young saw to it that Bobby Smyrniotis was signed to a four-year deal at the start of the year, meaning that any potential move upwards either comes through an undisclosed release clause or that Forge would be owed serious compensation for the move.

Since Greg Vanney left TFC at the end of 2020, the club has cycled through three replacements: Chris Armas, Javier Perez, and Bob Bradley. None of them could accrue a win percentage above 26%, and while interim head coach Terry Dunfield is well-liked, he as proved ineffectual at stemming Bradley’s bleed and has succumbed to six straight losses.

Forge FC Bobby Smyrniotis 2022
Photo Credit: John Jacques

Forge FC currently rests third in league standings, just two points behind the pole position. In Hamilton, Smyrniotis has established a hard-working club identity that has a knack for showing up in big games, and find ways to collect three points even when they’re not at their best – something Toronto FC has lacked entirely this season.

Stretching back beyond his Canadian Premier League days shows him to be a key developer of Canadian talent, co-founding Sigma FC and helping the likes of Tajon Buchanan, Cyle Larin, Richie Larea, and Manjrekar James develop into the future national team players. He has also worked with the Olympiacos Academy and AFC Ajax, too.

It’s also interesting that DC United assistant coach Carl Robinson, himself a former TFC player, had an interview. We’d seen at Tim Hortons Field last year prior to his move to DC United as their assistant coach in 2023. As a former TFC man and a previous MLS head coach himself, he’s got a lot of positives – though Bobby is arguably more of a proven winner in terms of consistency. Should Smyrniotis vacate the throne in Hamilton, however, one wonders if Robinson would consider the position – he’d been open to CPL in 2022, after all.

Whatever happens next, the fact that Bobby Smyrniotis has now been linked to two Major League Soccer positions in one year says plenty about his impact not only in the hammer, but for Canadian football in all.

Header Image Photo Credit: David Chant

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