Toronto FC lands the 'Atomic Ant' Giovinco

So Jozy Altidore or Michael Bradley won't even be the highest-paid Toronto FC player. Toronto FC announced on Monday that it had signed 27-year-old Italian midfielder Sebastian Giovinco as a Designated Player, and he will arrive in MLS after the end of the current Italian Serie A current season with champion Juventus.

Terms of the five-year deal were not disclosed, as per league policy, but the Toronto Sun reported that his annual salary of $7 million, plus marketing rights, will make him the highest-paid player in MLS history.

“Today marks a very special day for Toronto FC with the addition of Sebastian Giovinco,” said Toronto FC general manager Tim Bezbatchenko. “Seba is in the prime of his career and he has chosen to join Toronto FC and MLS at a time when many of the top clubs in the world were pursuing him. We are very pleased to bring a fantastic player to Toronto FC for our club and for our fans, especially those in the Italian community.”

Toronto FC has for several seasons sought to sign a big-name Italian player. With Juventus, Giovinco has won back-to-back Scudetti in 2012-13 and 2013-14. He is currently in his sixth season at Juve, where he has made a combined 130 appearances, scoring 20 goals with 23 assists across all competitions.

“I am excited to sign with Toronto FC today and look forward to joining the club this summer,” said Giovinco. “I have heard so many great things about Toronto over the years and I know that it will be a city that I feel right at home in. Until then, I have many things I still want to accomplish for Juventus and our fans. I will always give my heart and soul for Juve until I change shirts this summer.”

Giovinco, dubbed "the Atomic Ant" ("formica atomica" in Italian) for his size and explosiveness, has earned 21 caps for the Italian national team.

The signing of Giovinco gives TFC four Designated Players along with Altidore, Bradley and Brazilian Gilberto. The odd man out is Gilberto, who is likely to be transferred to a club abroad.

6 comments about "Toronto FC lands the 'Atomic Ant' Giovinco".
  1. BJ Genovese, January 19, 2015 at 2:59 p.m.

    Thats so awesome, such a skilled technical player. I will be watching closely to see how he is played. For an MLS team to take a diminutive player like Atomica Formica could mean this league is getting serious about style of play and skill set of players.

  2. John DiFiore, January 19, 2015 at 7:02 p.m.

    Whoa! Huge signing for MLS! This guy is amazing! I believe that signing a player like this will actually be pivotal for league.

  3. beautiful game, January 19, 2015 at 7:58 p.m.

    Nice acquisition for TFC; now let's see what the coaching staff can do?

  4. brett wyatt, January 20, 2015 at 12:34 a.m.

    So much for MLS being a "retirement league". This guy is a top quality player and only 27.

  5. Mike Jacome, January 20, 2015 at 12:43 p.m.

    "Nice acquisition for TFC; now let's see what the coaching staff can do? "

    Yes Nowozeniuk. I've been longing myself for the moment when MLS turned into a serious league and start bringing serious player like Giovinco or Montreal's Ignacio Piatti. The moment is now and little by little is happening. However should I emphasize your last sentence. How will coaching staff will take adcvantage of these? To me it is important to bring top talent in their prime time to the league, but even more important is to do what EPL, LA LIGA and LIGA MX is doing (IMPORTING COACHING TALENT) How about bringing the Scolaris, Capellos, Bianchis, Maturanas, Pellegrinis, Di Mateos of the world to our league and pair them up with our own coaches for their own developement? THAT isthe next step, and regretfully it's not happening.

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