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02:07, Nov 04 2016
It was a day not unlike today, eight years later this month, when Toronto FCs hierarchy guided the citys media to the top of the CN Tower to introduce their four newest signings and talk about their plans for their opening season in Major League Soccer. Jacob Josefson Devils Jersey . Everyone who spoke on behalf of the club that cold, sunny November day have long since departed, yet the team they helped create is still holding press conferences in the eleventh month of the year and not playing games. TFC is still searching for the formula that can find them on the field for a playoff game in November but one thing they have no problem organizing is a press conference in November. It was four years ago this month that they teased the city with the hiring of a certain consultant called Jürgen Klinsmann and two years ago this month that they hired Kevin Payne to run the club. Our mission should be that in 2014 we are in the playoffs, pushing to have the best record in the East, said Payne. By 2015, obviously, we want to be looked at as one of the top teams in the league. Obviously. Payne was supposed to be the man the club needed, a proven winner, we were told, who was an expert in MLS, or so we were told. Less than 24 months on, his press conference looks as ludicrous as all of the others the club has had during their brief eight-year existence. Words, tossed aside on to the growing mound of empty promises after another project and plan went array. It was impossible not to think about this clubs history in Novembers on Friday when the team called its most recent press conference. Sitting at the top table talking to the citys media was Michael Bradley, an American international midfielder who this club could only have dreamed of getting just last November. A year on, Bradley stands for much more than being a single, albeit designated player, member of Toronto FCs player staff. The 27-year-old is the remaining face of a winter of fantasies for the clubs fan base. He was unveiled as one third of a holy trinity of DPs yet less than a year later one is more than likely staying in England and not coming back while another hasnt yet proved he deserves such a tag of quality. That leaves Bradley all alone. It is a path that has led him to addressing the media about the season just gone. Another November press conference. Yet, this one feels different. For a quiet, seemingly shy man, you can always count on Bradley to think before he speaks. Its a motto that youd be hard pressed to say about many others who have spoke on behalf of this club on a November day. We realize we have to get better, improve and find the right ways to make ourselves better, he said on Friday. That is going to include bringing in new players and certain guys moving on. We need to find a way to get the right sorts of players in and the right sorts of men in. We need more quality, who in a football sense, can add something but we also need more guys with personality, more leaders, more competitors, more men. Although it is yet to be decided, such a group is unlikely to include Jermain Defoe. With Jermain, inside the locker room, there were never any issues. For me, he needs to decide where he is in his life, in his career and what he wants. He has to figure out what he wants from his career, his life. As a player I hope the best possible decision for everybody can be made and that he is focused and comfortable wherever he is. Bradleys own tenure at the club has not gone completely smoothly and in a World Cup year he remains in the middle of an awkward club vs country triangle as head coach Greg Vanney admitted last month. Ive spoken to Jürgen, and most of the conversation, to be fair, was Jürgen telling me how he thinks Michael should be played, Vanney revealed last month. My conversations are more with Michael and how Michael feels he should be played. We are with the player on a daily basis and we have a rapport and a relationship with the player on a daily basis and how they train and how they work. I think Jürgen feels like hes a player who should be higher up the field, Vanney added. But I dont know that Jürgen and Michael see things exactly eye-to-eye. So I work more closely with Michael than Jürgen in that realm. It is not a coincidence that Vanney, a man still trying to prove to some that he is the man to lead the club forward, chose Bradley as the lightning rod subject to publicly reveal leadership qualities. Vanney knows he is lucky to have Bradley at this club and it is imperative for him to ensure he puts the midfielder in a position that he is comfortable in. Bradley chose not to unveil, publicly, where he prefers to play in midfield but is clear that he is comfortable under Vanney. I have a very clear idea how I can best help the team, Bradley admits but once again he turned the conversation away from him and stressed the importance of a united group on and off the field. With Greg here there is an understanding of what we are about and how things need to be better. We need to make sure the balance is right. We cant fall into a trap that a number ten, or one guy, will fix everything. Dont misunderstand me, in no way does this team need to be blown up. Things didnt go the way any of us hoped this year. We werent good enough but to stand the test of time every part of what we do here has to be better. That is the tone and the mentality we have every day. Bradley, when talking about Defoe, gave the clearest indication yet about the message he can bring to the current and future players of this club. I am a firm believer in life that you have to find things that you are passionate about and you have to be then ready to go all in. Ideally you want to do that with people who have that same mentality, hunger and commitment and if you dont have that feeling and that focus and commitment to do something then its going to be difficult to ever enjoy yourself and be all in. Somehow I dont think that November quote will be thrown on to the empty promises pile in the future. It remains early days but at least one high-profile TFC designated player remains all in. Custom Devils Jersey . -- Patrick Kueng of Switzerland was nearly flawless as he captured his first World Cup and halted Aksel Lund Svindals streak of four straight super-G victories on Saturday. Andy Greene Jersey . Pedroia reached the milestone with a little panache, hitting a grand slam in the sixth inning and propelling the Boston Red Sox to a 7-1 win over the Oakland Athletics on Friday night. http://www.hockeydevilsshop.us/Damon-Severson-Jersey/ . No pretty goals on this night, just get to the front of the net and fight for a chance.P.K. Subban and the Montreal Canadiens continued contract negotiations on Thursday. TSN Hockey Insider Pierre LeBrun tweeted that the expectation was that Subbans agent Don Meehan and Newport Sports would be meeting with the Canadiens on Thursday. Later in the day, Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin confirmed the two sides met to discuss a contract extension for the restricted free agent. Subban scored 10 goals and added 43 assists in 82 games with the Canadiens this season. He added five goals and 14 points in 17 playoff games as the team advanced to the Eastern Conference Final. Travis Zajac Jersey. . The Canadiens re-signed Subban to a two-year deal worth an average annual value of $2.875 million contract prior to the shortened 2013 season. Subban was awarded the 2013 Norris Trophy as the NHLs top defenceman after notching 11 goals and 27 assists in 42 games. Drafted in the second round (43rd overall) of the 2007 Draft, Subban has tallied 42 goals and 167 assists in 284 career games, all with the Canadiens. Wholesale NFL Jerseys ' ' '