TORONTO -- Toronto FC has taken its first big first step in restructuring after another disappointing season.
The Canadian Press has learned that former D.C. United president and CEO Kevin Payne is joining the underachieving club. An announcement is expected Wednesday.
Payne, 59, has been the Washington D.C. club's top executive since its formation in 1996. He has also served as its general manager.
A major restructuring move was expected by Toronto FC, which is looking to revamp after the latest in a series of poor seasons.
On Monday, during his annual state of the league conference call, MLS commissioner Don Garber said the struggling Toronto franchise was planning some "bold moves."
And Tom Anselmi, president and COO of TFC owner Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, has said a full review of the club and its structure was planned after the franchise's latest dismal season.
Also Tuesday, the club said designated player Eric Hassli will return next season after the club picked up the option on his contract for 2013. The 31-year-old French striker was obtained in a trade with the Vancouver Whitecaps on July 2, but injuries limited him to seven league games. He scored three goals for Toronto over that span. The club said Hassli, who made US$790,000 this season, will be a designated player again in 2013.
Toronto (5-21-8) missed the playoffs for the sixth straight year since joining the league in 2007.
This season, the club posted franchise worsts for wins (five), losses (21), points (23), goals against (62) and winless string (14).
D.C. United, meanwhile, finished third in the league standings with a 17-10-7 record, despite losing former league MVP Dwayne De Rosario to a knee injury.
-- The Canadian Press