Saturday, January 19, 2008

Johnston loads up on defence

We get the message, Mo.

Defence is a priority.

Last season Toronto FC surrendered a league-high 49 goals, so in yesterday's MLS draft, head coach Mo Johnston and his staff went after defence, defence and a little more defence.

Toronto headed into the MLS SuperDraft with four picks, and spent the first two on UConn defender and two-time All-American Julius James (ninth pick), and Pat Phelan (10th), a defensive midfielder from Wake Forest. Phelan, 23, was also an All-American in 2007.

Before taking yet another defender with the 30th pick (UCLA's Mike Zaher), Toronto traded up to the 28th spot to take Wake Forest goalkeeper Brian Edwards.

The only help for Toronto's often-injured front line came with the team's final selection – striker Joseph Lapira, who scored 41 goals in his career at Notre Dame.


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