Paul Mariner has been tasked with turning around Toronto FC’s shocking MLS season after succeeding Aron Winter as manager of the Canadian club.
The Englishman has been handed the role after Winter paid for Toronto’s dismal run of form this season with his job. The club are languishing at the bottom of the MLS table and are likely to miss the play-offs for the sixth consecutive year.
Mariner will now become the franchise’s seventh head coach, proving just how tough it has been for Toronto to gain any real consistency.
And with only one win from the opening 10 games of the season, Toronto will need Mariner to work some real miracles if the team are to defy online bets and salvage something positive from this season.
The 59-year old former Plymouth manager has been at the club since the start of the year, working in a number of roles before accepting the head coach’s position.
He has already urged his players to start repaying the club’s loyal fans, who have been so badly let down this season by a string of below-par performances.
“The one thing that should be a given, and what the fans who pay money want to see, is that the players are out there running and working hard,” Mariner said.
“That seems a pretty strange thing to say but when fans see that, they see people tracking back and working hard for the team, it’s infectious, it goes through the team and it goes through the fans.
“It gets everyone fired up and that’s what we want.”
Those that bet on soccer games will undoubtedly be paying close attention to Toronto’s fortunes following Mariner’s appointment.