Lorenzo Insigne rumors could lead to record deal with Toronto FC

Toronto FC President Bill Manning promised significant changes after the curtain closed on a dismal six-win season.

The signing of Italian star Lorenzo Insigne, reportedly a TFC target for nearly two months, and the talks have escalated as of late, would qualify as one of the most important moves in Major League Soccer history.

The Reds are reportedly willing to pay the 30-year-old playmaker a league-record salary. Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano tweeted on tuesday that the Reds have offered Insigne a 5 1/2 year contract that would guarantee him about $ 16 million Canadian per season, with the potential for more than $ 6.5 million in bonuses.

The highest paid player in MLS last season was Los Angeles FC forward Carlos Vela with some C $ 8 million.

If the deal goes through, Toronto FC will acquire one of the most talented attackers in Serie A from Italy. The Napoli captain signed with his hometown team when he was 15 years old in 2006 and has played most of his professional career there. , with some mixed loans.

He also starred in Euro 2020 last summer, where Italy became continental champions, and has claimed that a word recently added to the Italian dictionary: Tiraggiro, to describe the type of curling shot Insigne has become known for, after cutting in half. of the field from the left wing and letting the ball fly with the right foot.

Naturally, there will be comparisons with fellow Italian and former TFC forward Sebastian Giovinco. Like Giovinco, the 2015 MLS MVP, Insigne is small, at five foot four, but can appear larger than life on the field with his quick feet and quicker mind. When speculation about a link between TFC and Insigne first surfaced at the end of the MLS season, headlines also made the connection to Giovinco.

However, if he landed with the Reds, Insigne would come in as a known number after more than a decade as a consistent starter with Napoli and a regular on the national team. Giovinco, on the other hand, made a name for himself largely in Toronto after battling for playing time at Juventus and internationally.

A deal with Insigne, which has also received offers from Tottenham Hotspur and Inter Milan, would be more comparable to the one that brought in Jermain Defoe in 2014.

Defoe was a central figure in a major TFC makeover called the Bloody Big Deal, but failed despite a success story, both for the club and the country in England, before landing in Toronto.

Like Defoe and Giovinco before him, Insigne would be a designated player should he move to MLS. TFC, however, still officially has the top three in Jozy Altidore, Yeferson Soteldo and Alejandro Pozuelo. However, the future remains in the air for both Altidore and Soteldo. The Reds would need to make room before any deal with Insigne could be formalized.

Napoli’s owner Aurelio De Laurentiis has been quoted as saying that Insigne’s future there “does not depend on us.” The player and his hometown club, where he has no contract at the end of the season, are reportedly at a standstill over the money.

“I’ve never forced anyone,” De Laurentiis said. “I let others decide democratically what is the best option for their lives. If Insigne wants to stay, we are here to welcome you with open arms. Instead, if you think your trip in Naples is over, we’ll sort it out and accept your decision. ”

If Insigne’s time with Napoli ends, a move to the Reds would be the important signing Manning promised, and a blow to the MLS club.


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