MLS- Toronto FC

A Minute With: Stefan Frei

Stefan Frei 1 (ISIphotos.com) 

                                         Photo by ISIphotos.com

Toronto FC rookie goalkeeper Stefan Frei has enjoyed a dream start to his professional career. While most goalkeepers spend years working their way into a starting role, Frei has taken over as TFC's No. 1 from the beginning and is enjoying a Rookie of the Year-type season.

Frei's first season has had its share of highlights, but the first and one of the best came in his very first game, Toronto's 4-2 win vs. Kansas City.

"I remember being on the phone with my brother after the game and him point out to me that I had just played against someone we grew up watching back in Switzerland," Frei said. "Claudio Lopez was someone we watched growing up in Switzerland when he played for Valencia and, here I was, playing against him. That was definitely a moment where I knew I was in the pros now.

Frei and Toronto FC take on New England on Saturday at BMO Field.

What do you think of Frei's season so far? Does he get your Rookie of the Year vote? Can you see him making a move to Europe sooner than later? Are you one of the fans who wishes your team had drafted him?

Share your thoughts below.

  • cbr

    he obviously has his EU papers in order…he’ll be gone in two shakes of a lamb’s tail


  • SG

    Probably top 5 rookie, but my Rookie of the year vote would have to go to Chris Pontius. Pontius and Wallace are playing amazing for a DC team who in the past 3-4 years never played rookies.


  • Northzax

    Cbr: I’m not so sure about that. First, he’s under a three year deal (GenAd, right?) second, he’s still quite young for a keeper, he’s getting first team ball in a decent team in a league that has produced a decent share of keepers he’s going to develop more at bmo for a few seasons than being an understudy in a middling European league. If he keeps developing, three years from now maybe he can compete for a starting spot in a top league. But right now he’d ride pine. I can see an exception if it’s a perfect apprentice role, like seitz has at Villa, where you are the de facto successor of a late-career keeper.


  • Richard, UK

    Give him one or two more seasons in MLS.

    Can’t understand why Chivas USA let him by in the Draft. Lahoud is good, but passing on a quality keeper? You can’t do that!


  • John

    On opening day I was shocked we were handing the reins to a rookie after Sutton and Edwards had battled for the job last year. However, the guy’s been impressive and saved the three points on several occasions already this season. He’s got the reaction time of a cat


  • gmen04

    Is it wrong to assume that his national team future lies with the Swiss and not the USA?


  • Kizz

    @ Gmen,

    It’s not wrong to make that assumption, Frei was born in Switzerland and should battle to play for their national team


  • The Athority

    Also, there is no room for him in the USMNT set-up. We’re good between the posts.

    I have the MLS package (great deal and I recommend to any MLS fans), he’s good for a rookie but he’s a bit goofy at times. Definitly needs polish.


  • spark

    Pretty sure on Sportsnet (Canada) the international question was asked and his answer was to flash his swiss flag tattoo.


  • Sean Monaghan

    Im guessing he will play for the swiss no doubt. The Swiss don’t have any great goalies. There starter during the Euros (Zuberbuller) is like 36 or 37 also


  • Supsam

    let frei go to the Swiss. Its Frei thats missing out on World Cups not the players playing for USMNT. His loss


  • spark

    Hmmm the Swiss program is pretty good right now – good results in ’06, and would have done better in the 08 Euros if Frei’s cousin hadn’t gotten injured and are on pace to qualify for 2010. I don’t think he’d be missing out on anything.


  • Matt in Louisville

    I would agree Frei is good for his relative lack of experience but no better than the keepers in the US pipeline.

    Toronto has given up 15 goals this year. Only two teams have given up more. I’d vote for Pontius at this early stage in the season.


  • CACuzcatlan

    Pontious is definitely the top candidate right now, but Zakuani is looking good as well.


  • SayervilleFC

    Just out of curiosity, how does living in Canada impact Frei’s quest for US citizenship, provided he wants it? (He supposedly had a Green Card before being drafted by TFC.)

    I know in the past he’s said he’d like to play for Switzerland but if has any desire to play for the US I’m curious how that situation would play itself out since he’s not currently living in the US.)


  • marlon

    I think he played for the under 15 swiss team. so isn’t he already tied to that country.


  • Alan J

    I believe the original intention was to give Frei major playing time early on due to Sutton’s anticipated Gold Cup absence, but Frei’s game was good enough to not rotate him out.

    Sutton is pretty pricey to be just a reserve player. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see Sutton back in the net during the second half of the season.


  • KireDCU

    Doing alright, but not rookie of the year. That belongs to Chris Pontius, at this early moment.


  • doug

    marlon–youre not tied to a country unless you play a full international. im pretty sure thats the rule

    sayrevilleFC–im sure Frei havin his green card has more to do with him NOT filling an international roster spot for TFC and less with a desire for US citizenship

    US or not, this guy is the next big transfer out of MLS. Maybe not one and done, but definatley not 3. He’s too good to be here. Anyone know if he is related to Swiss international striker Alexander Frei?


  • TO

    His distribution is not very good when the ball is passed back to him and he has some decisiveness issues, so I think he will stay in the MLS for a few more years before he moves on. Keepers have a long career arc so he isn’t in a big hurry. I’m sure he can learn more in the MLS playing as the number one goalie then he can sitting on a bench in Europe. He does have a lot of potential!


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