You know a guy is a good guy when you stand around, have a beer with him, and crack some jokes about Palace Pizza.

I had a chance to meet with the new Toronto FC coach Mo Johnston and the first player they signed, Jim Brennan, tonight at Cerverjaria on College Street.

If it were world cup, euro, or even the portuguese league finals there is no way we’d get a seat in that bar in that part of town. (though my brother survived going to see a netherlands game wearing his england shirt in there this summer.) But it’s october, and even though before the FC showed up they had Cristiano Ronaldo trying on some weird shirts on the big screen, it wasn’t enough to bring in a ton of folks.

Then the FC fans showed up. You see, Jim and Mo will be making weekly pub crawls throughout the city in November to get out and meet soccer fans in Toronto, and this was the first one.

Mo’s got a great sense of humour. Jim is really easygoing – and hey, when you come outta Newmarket, what else would you expect than for him to be a great guy? He just about agreed to come out and play some ball hockey in Aurora with some buddies.

Jim, if we can’t do the ball hockey, we’ll go for beers at the Grey Goat on Main Street. It’ll be good.

It was a good night out. Fans, coach, player – everyone’s looking forward to the coming season. (and that’s before taking into account the great response on season’s ticket sales.)

I also got to hang out with Jonathan Cubas. He’s starting a web magazine dedicated entirely to Canadian soccer (National teams, Toronto FC, A-League, Canadians abroad).
The site is going to launch in mid-november.

Jonathan has got a great story:

He was born in the US, but he fell in love with the Canadian national men’s team at the Gold Cup in 2000.

Now he’s here.

As a long time canadian soccer fan it just warmed my heart to hear it. I thought 2000 was going to be the Gladwell-esque tipping point for Canadian Soccer.
I could see them doing no wrong – the next step was the world cup…. but it didn’t happen.

To have Jonathan join the legions (and by legions i mean the handful of fiercely loyal Canucks who love the nats – yes, we’re not the leafs nation but we ouggta be.) of Canadian fans is just excellent.

Of course, I’ll post to let you know when the site is up and running – i’ll be writing for it.