Toronto FC learned Wednesday that they’ve lost their second Designated Player in the span of less than two months, thanks to a hip injury that will sideline midfielder Torsten Frings for the remainder of the season.
Frings, 35, will require arthroscopic surgery on his hip, ending his 2012 campaign after he proved to be one of the Reds’ most valuable assets during perhaps the team’s most tumultuous season to date.
Frings started 20 games in his first full season in the league and chipped in two goals and two assists. He also emerged as arguably the team’s most reliable player during a year that saw the club switch coaches midseason and lose two other Designated Players either to injury or a trade.
The Reds dealt embattled DP Julian de Guzman to FC Dallas on July 13 and then lost striker Danny Koevermans for the rest of the season to a torn ACL just three days later. They promptly traded for Vancouver Whitecaps striker Eric Hassli to bolster their DP stable, but through it all was Frings, who returned from a hamstring injury suffered during the team’s CONCACAF Champions League run in March to lead the club’s midfield for the bulk of the year.
With just seven games remaining and currently 21 points off the pace for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, TFC will almost certainly miss the postseason for the sixth consecutive season. They return to action on Sept. 12 at home against the Chicago Fire.