Toronto FC released Brazilian midfielder Julio Cesar on Friday, with TFC head coach Ryan Nelsen explaining he couldn’t guarantee the veteran journeyman much game time.
Before the announcement, the player was seen leaving BMO Field in plain clothes and reporters were initially told the 34-year-old was missing out on training due to “personal reasons.”
Cesar joined up with the Canadian outfit in January after Sporting Kansas City released him. The well-traveled player played for Real Madrid and AC Milan, among a host of other clubs, prior to joining Major League Soccer.
During two seasons with Sporting KC he played in 54 MLS games; however, this year he didn’t feature at all in Toronto’s three opening matches due to a calf injury.
The move comes as a surprise, as at the time of the announcement, a video featuring his imminent comeback from injury was prominently placed on the club’s official website.
Cesar made $255,750 in 2012, according to MLS Players Union documents, so salary cap considerations are likely to have played into this move.