Toronto FC has spent the offseason looking for a playmaker capable of stepping in and giving the team's offense the spark it lacked in 2007. The second-year club is on the verge of landing that player and he is someone who has already proven capable of being a star in MLS.
According to multiple sources within MLS, Toronto FC and MLS are in final negotiations with Honduran midfielder Amado Guevara to bring back the 2004 MLS MVP after he spent the past year playing with Honduran club CD Motagua. If a settlement to secure Guevera's release from his current contract with Motagua can be achieved, Toronto could acquire the playmaker in time for its season opener against Columbus on March 29.
Patrick McCabe, Guevara's agent, would not confirm that Guevara is close to joining Toronto FC, but did acknowledge that talks to bring Guevara back to MLS are ongoing.
"We are trying hard to have Amado rejoin an MLS team and hope to have the matter resolved by the end of the week," McCabe said.
Toronto has had a busy offseason moving out players and clearing salary cap space, including a recent trade with San Jose that sent midfielder Ronnie O'Brien to the Earthquakes for a major allocation (approximately $300,000) and a first-round draft pick in 2008, but Guevara would be the first major acquisition of this offseason for the second-year club.
According to sources, the Guevara acquisition could be the first of a series of moves before the MLS transfer window closes on April 15. Toronto FC is also in talks to bring in a European-based striker and is still in position to use its Designated Player slot to add a high-profile player. Guevara will not take up the team's Designated Player slot.
Guevara, 31, spent parts of five seasons in MLS, including four with the MetroStars. During that time, Guevara was one of the league's best midfielders, posting double-digit assist totals for three straight seasons and earning MVP honors in 2004. Toronto sees Guevara as the perfect playmaker to pair alongside MLS rookie of the year and U.S. national team midfielder Maurice Edu.
The MetroStars traded Guevara to Chivas USA for its Designated Player slot after the 2006 season but Guevara only played four games with Chivas USA before falling out with head coach Preki. After blocking an attempted trade to Toronto FC, Guevara was promptly loaned out to CD Motagua for the remainder of the 2007 MLS season.
Guevara has enjoyed a strong return to the Honduran league, leading Motagua to the Copa UNCAF title in December 2007.
Guevara's arrival in Toronto would reunite him with former MetroStars and Red Bulls head coach Mo Johnston, who is now Toronto FC's director of soccer after leaving his position as the team's head coach. John Carver has stepped in as Toronto's new head coach.