Toronto FC make coaching change

Toronto FC shuffled their front office Friday by naming John Carver as their new coach.

Toronto FC shuffled their front office Friday by naming John Carver as their new coach.

Carver replaces Mo Johnston, who becomes the Major League Soccer team's manager and director of soccer.

Johnston led Toronto FC to a 6-17-7 record in its inaugural season in 2007.

Carver, 43, is a former head coach of English club Luton Town. He also served as an assistant manager at Newcastle United under Bobby Robson and had a short stint as caretaker manager at Leeds United in 2006.

"I am delighted to have John Carver alongside me as we start to prepare for the 2008 season," said Johnston. "He brings a lot of experience with him in all aspects of the game and I'm looking forward to working together. We are committed to making this team better in every way, and John will be a big part of that."

In his new role, Johnston will be responsible for all aspects of soccer operations, with particular focus paid to procuring talent, player transactions and the management of the team's off-field decisions.

As coach, Carver will run the day-to-day training of the team, but will collaborate with Johnston on roster decisions and managing the team on the field.

"We are pleased to be able to expand Mo Johnston's duties to club manager and director of soccer operations," said Tom Anselmi, executive vice-president and chief operating officer of Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment.

"Mo will continue to be responsible for all aspects of soccer operations and we are providing him with more resources to support his objectives. John Carver has been added to serve as head coach of Toronto FC, which will enable Mo to devote more time to manage the assessment and procurement of talent which is even more important now with the expanded international player mix available for MLS teams."

Toronto FC open the 2008 pre-season Feb. 4 in Bradenton, Fla. Toronto will kick off the MLS regular season on March 29 on the road against the Columbus Crew. The team's first home game is April 19 against Real Salt Lake.