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  1. #1
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    May 2008
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    Default "Come On You Reds" - Joshua Kloke - Book Discussion

    I just finished the book, and it is very good. I give it 4 Fuads.

    *spolier alert - if you intend to read the book, maybe don't continue reading this*
    __________________________________________________ ____________________

    Full of interesting tidbits and discussions about long forgotten episodes:

    - the early days, including how close we were to being InterToronto(!)
    - the involvement of the Voyageurs, Red Patch Boys and U Sector in the development of the club culture, which was at the time a radical departure for MLS, who had been catering to families/suburban fans until TFC (this story well known to the longtimers here, but not often described in detail for the record, which this book now does)
    - he gets into the issues/shortfalls of Mo, Preki, Winter, Mariner, Nelsen in some detail (none of these guys were any good at preparing for games, or running practices, except Winter)
    - both Mo and Nelsen participated heavily in practices, and looked they they should be on the active roster (this is amazing re Mo, he was 44 in 2007!)
    - John Carver had mostly nice things to say about Mo, and his primary reason for leaving was that the health of his parents in England had declined
    - he lays out Dero's version of what really happened in the Dero/Celtic schmozzle (I am a bit suspicious about this version, but whatever, it's ancient history)
    - the players were nearly in revolt when Ryan Nelsen wasn't here for his first training camp (he was still playing at QPR)
    - the closer for Defoe was Nelsen (they were briefly teammates at Spurs). Defoe's mother gets a lot (all?) of the blame for his departure (she didn't like it here)

    The reason I didn't give it 5 stars is that

    - it kind of got lost in the trees when discussing the current team. He didn't quite (for me anyways) capture the incredible feeling around this team during the summer 2016-April 2018 run, didn't even mention that they got to three finals in 16 months and never lost.
    - there was no real insight into Vanney, eg how does he run practice? could Kloke have gone deeper into his decision to switch to 4-4-2 in the 2017 final?
    - he didn't really take the gloves off with Anselmi, although in fairness all the detail is there for anyone to connect the dots
    - he didn't dig into the rules around Canadians in MLS, and evolution of them, which has to be part of TFC's narrative. We started winning only when we really started acting mostly like an American MLS team.
    - he never dealt with the MLSE level - Peddie/Teachers and their contemptuous stance towards TFC (it was their decision to use it as a training ground for execs like Anselmi that was the root cause of all the early misery). There are people who used to be at Teachers who he could have talked to, they would spill now. Same for Tanenbaum, Bell, Rogers etc btw. There is a lot there he could have gone after.
    - he gave Bez all the credit for the Giovinco signing, which has always been the party line, but just isn't credible to me. This has current relevance, as Leiweke was already on his way out when it happened, and TFC's stance on 2019 player budget will be influenced by the degree to which spending 18M/year on 3 DPs was Leiweke's idea.

    But these are mostly my opinions, and therefore nits. Kloke has done the reporting, talked to the people, set it down for the record and, if he couldn't find "proof", he didn't write it.

    He has a good pen, and he totally gets what TFC really is, ie the unique supporter/fan dynamic.

    Well worth buying/reading this book. (I have never met Joshua and wouldn't know him if he was sitting next to me.)
    Last edited by ensco; 10-14-2018 at 11:34 AM.
    “What the world needs is more geniuses with humility; there are so few of us left.”

  2. #2
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    No digital copy at the library - if requested enough, the TPL will buy a copy or two.



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