Toronto's de Guzman to don captain's armband vs. SJ
TORONTO — Canadian international midfielder Julian de Guzman has been named Toronto FC captain for the team’s home opener on Saturday against the San Jose Earthquakes (1 pm ET, TSN/RDS in Canada, MLS Live in US).
He will replace midfielder Torsten Frings, who suffered a right hamstring strain early in last Saturday’s 3-1 loss to the Sounders in Seattle.
Frings is expected to be out for four to six weeks with the injury, opening the door for de Guzman to lead the team in their second MLS game of the young season.
“Julian is an experienced player, and I think the moment Torsten is not in, [Julian] can replace him like a captain,” head coach and technical director Aron Winter said. “But [the team] has to do it together."
De Guzman, 30, signed with Toronto as a Designated Player in September 2009.
“It’s always special to wear a captain’s band,” de Guzman told reporters at BMO Field after training on Thursday in Oakville, Ontario. “But at the end the day, the way I’ve seen this team and the way I think everyone feels, is everyone is kind of a leader out there, everyone is supporting each other. That’s how this team has gelled together.
“Whether I wear the captain band or not doesn’t really matter,” he added. “But with my experience and my impact on this team it definitely means a lot where I’ll definitely make myself vocal and present just as much as everyone else.”