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A Philadelphia Union blog hosted by Christopher A. Vito and Matthew De George

Thursday, December 6, 2012


(Times file)
The Union underwent a little course correction Thursday, when they traded with New York to acquire the guy they never should have traded away in January.

It took stopovers in Vancouver and New York, but Sebastien Le Toux is back in Philly. The Union sent Josue Martinez and allocation money to the Red Bulls in exchange for Le Toux, the club's all-time leading scorer.

Le Toux never wanted to leave the Union. He was on the wrong side of contract negotiations, with ex-Union coach Peter Nowak convincing the shot-callers in the front office to invest in cheaper, yet riskier options at striker before meeting Le Toux's contract demands. So the Union sent Le Toux to Vancouver, and Le Toux told the Daily Times hours after the January trade went official, that he would never again play for Nowak, a man for whom he had such little respect that he refused to shake his hand when the Whitecaps played the Union.

It appears he won't have to, with Union manager John Hackworth and CEO Nick Sakiewicz pulling the strings to bring back Le Toux.

Le Toux told me in July, after his trade from Vancouver to New York, that he hadn't ruled out the notion of playing for the Union in 2013. After all, he would be out of contract by then, and to a degree would have the cards in his hands. (I'm still trying to figure out some of the details of Le Toux's new contract. If I find them, I'll pass them along.)

The Union's vision at the time of the trade of Le Toux was simplistic: Bring in less-expensive options at striker in place of the 28-year-old with 25 goals in two seasons for the Union. It didn't work. They went from a playoff team to a doddering non-contender. Guys like Martinez, Gabriel Gomez and Lio Pajoy are gone. And back is the constant -- Le Toux.

Le Toux and the Union will hold a 10 a.m. press conference Friday. It's a presser that, to Union fans, will probably feel long overdue.

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