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Report: Brazilian goalkeeper Cesar linked with move to TFC

Goalkeeper Julio Cesar of Brazil

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Brazilian national team goalkeeper Julio Cesar is likely to leave Queens Park Rangers this spring in search of playing time, but the latest club he’s being linked with is quite a surprise.

The 34-year-old goalkeeper, who is set to start for Brazil at this summer’s World Cup, is being linked with a loan move to Toronto FC by Brazilian newspaper Globo Esporte. The report states that the deal is just pending an official announcement, though O Globo doesn’t know whether the deal is only for the next six months (through the World Cup) or through the entire Major League Soccer season.

Toronto FC and MLS haven’t commented on the report.

Despite being Brazil’s starting goalkeeper, Cesar has been on the bench all season for Harry Redknapp and QPR, failing to even make the substitute’s bench in recent weeks. Part of the reason Cesar has failed to move away in two successive transfer windows is due to his salary, which is being reported in the region of $6 million per season.

As TFC have no Designated Player spots available, Cesar could only realistically come to Toronto FC on loan, and only then if QPR paid a majority of Cesar’s salary.

In addition, TFC signed goalkeeper Joe Bendik to a contract extension during the offseason after a strong season, despite the team’s results on the field.

If Cesar were to join TFC, he would bring an impressive resume. He’s earned 74 caps for Brazil in his 17-year professional career spent between Flamengo, Inter Milan (including a short stint with Chievo Verona), and QPR. While at Inter, Cesar won five Serie A titles, three Coppa Italia titles, a UEFA Champions League trophy, and the Club World Cup title. In addition, he was named Serie A goalkeeper of the year on two occasions.

Cesar is expected to be named to Luiz Felipe Scolari’s Brazil squad for their friendly match on March 5 at South Africa.


What do you think of this report? Do you see Cesar moving to TFC? Think he would take a pay cut to join the league?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Sources in Brazil confirm this is close to a done deal. QPR will pick up most of his wage while he goes on loan. He’ll forfeit a portion of his wages too but his publicity contracts will more than make up for that with the exposure and playing time. Julio Cesar’s family also has a keen interest in living in North America, wchih helps the transition. This has gone as far as Scolari giving him the “ok” to proceed. Julio is the only player confirmed in Scolari’s roster fo rthe world cup in Brazil.

  2. Toronto could pay a fraction of Cesar’s salary to keep him below a DP level and just schedule a few friendlies with QPR. QPR would get their money back. It is a way to get around the salary cap.

  3. This makes very little sense. I only see two possibilities:

    #1 Toronto already has deals in place to get rid of Gilberto and Laba, and are willing to take on Cesar’s huge salary (or a good portion of it). HIGHLY unlikely given that they just acquired Gilberto 2 months ago.

    #2 Toronto is only taking on as much of his salary as will fit under the cap, and QPR is paying the rest. This situation is even more unlikely. There would be absolutely no shortage of takers from every European league (and most of the teams in Brazil) given those salary conditions. So why uproot his family and go to Toronto over all those options? Only way that makes much sense is if there’s something shady going on– i.e. payments (or guarantee of future payments) to QPR or Cesar that circumvent the salary cap.

    • If there were no shortage of takers, they would have taken him by now… the Transfer Window in most European leagues has ended, and he is still a QPR man.

      Why uproot family to go to Toronto? You might want to ask Defoe and Bradley that same question. Moving from one overpriced metropolis to another is not exactly “uprooting”.

      I don’t think it is as far-fetched as you make it, but i’d be very surprised if this goes through.

      • I realize the window is closed now, but there was no hint during that time that QPR was offering him out on loan and willing to pick up 95% of his salary. That’d be an almost unprecedented offer for a player of his caliber, and I’m pretty sure that news would have leaked. So if that IS the case now, what changed?
        And moving to Toronto from London IS a pretty big change if you’ve never lived in North America before. He could have stayed in London, or moved back to Italy or Brazil, which would all be easier changes. I’m not saying it’s impossible, it just all seems unlikely.

      • Moving from London to Toronto is not a big change for someone who has lived in big cities before – in fact, it’s actually a plesant change to people who have lived in over-crowded European cities. Also, it is one of the most multi-cultural cities in the world, so settling is not as hard as it is in other North American cities – you cannot lump Toronto into the North American landscape generally like that, it is quite unique.

        Also, in terms of what may have changed – QPR probably thought the same thing you were; that someone must take him, he’s world-class – when no one did (it could even be that he vetoed moves to lower leagues, as a player must agree to terms), and the window is done, your options are pretty limited.

        This article I found has some reasons as to why he might want to do this as well…

    • One thing you’re leaving out is former QPR teammate Ryan Nelsen is the manager and that may make the destination more friendly and attractive. He has money and could be depending on sporting concerns and quality of life. He drops down enough to get a chance at playing, and he plays for a manager he knows and probably likes. QPR let TFC have some players last year, and while all three sides of the equation could drive a hard bargain if they wanted, QPR might want to be nice to a fairly well behaved employee who gave them years of decent keeping then dutifully sat the bench for a while, Cesar might want to play at all (salary) costs, and TFC could use a keeper.

      • Also lets not forget that Toronto FC also has 2 other Brazilians in Jackson and Gilberto which could help Cesar adjust.

    • QPR have been trying to sell him, loan him, hell even give him away since thy were relegated. It is bizarre that no one has taken him but it is what it is.

  4. First, sounds credible to me…b/c of the Nellie-Harry connection, b/c QPR wants him gone, b/c Brasil wants him to get PT. I’m sure something will be worked with the salary.

    Second, from a competitive standpoint, this means that TFC is going to be missing a lot of key pieces come WC camp and competition time. So while this is great for PR and the league, I’m not sure how great it is for TFC’s competitiveness this year.

  5. QPR want Cesar to go elsewhere, theyve already subsidized loans of other players out on loan, and Nelsen’s relationship with Redknapp counts. A month ago I would have laughed at the idea of Julio Cesar, still a world class keeper, coming to Toronto. Now? I wouldnt be surprised. Dont kid yourself…Cesar is still a great keeper and would arguably be the best keeper to ever sign for MLS.

    • Cesar would easily be one of the best players to sign for MLS, period. He got stuck in a lousy situation at QPR, but he is still Brasil’s No. 1 for a reason and remains one of the top 10 goalkeepers in the world. How many MLS players have started for a World Cup favorite during their time in MLS?

      • How do you figure he’s currently one of the top 10 in the world when he can’t even get into a Championship side?

      • His situation at QPR has nothing to do with quality. Its a salary/personal thing, sort of a cousin of what happened to Iker. The fact that he remains firmly entrenched as Brasil’s No.1 in a World Cup year, when Brasil is not short of options, should tell you all you need to know.

      • Brazil are not short of options at any other position, but at GK? The backup, Victor, has 6 caps, and the other recent call-ups have less than 10 apiece (Jefferson has 9, Diego Cavalieri has 3, and Matheus Vidotto has 0). Their last “elite” goalkeeper was arguably Emerson Leao, who retired in 1986.

      • Dida had a run that was world class. As for backups, small number of caps does not mean lack of quality — in fact, it does not mean lack of quality because Julio Cesar has held such a lock on the spot for years. Did you see Victor during the winning Copa Lib run? He was out of his mind.

      • Watch him play for brazil and you will see why hes top 10. Even if you watched his games with qpr last season he was their best player

      • While his issues at QPR aren’t really about his ability, I offer the following reasons why Julio Cesar is not a “Top 10 goalkeeper”:

        Manuel Neuer
        Gianluigi Buffon
        Iker Casillas
        Victore Valdes
        Thibaut Courtois
        Salvatore Sirigu
        Artur Moraes|
        Wojciech Szczesny
        Hugo Lloris
        Morgan De Sanctis
        Marco-Andre ter Stegen
        Vincent Enyeama

      • Morgan, stegen, szczesny, and nigerias gk? Haha no. Steklenburg is better than those four, and all you need to do is watch brazil to know cesar is top 10

      • Yeah, Cesar’s better than ter Stegen…that must be why Barca’s been heavily linked to Cesar for the past year…oh wait…

        Enyeama has 64 saves and 14 cleansheets in 23 matches for Lille this season (Ligue 1 regular season).

        Ter Stegen has 80 saves and 6 cleansheets in 19 matches for Borussia Monchengladbach this season (Bundesliga regular season).

        Szczesny has 73 saves and 11 cleansheets in 24 matches for Arsenal this season (EPL regular season).

        De Sanctis has 43 saves and 13 cleansheets in 22 matches for AS Roma this season.

        Show me evidence (not conjecture – evidence) that Julio Cesar is currently a “Top 10 goalkeeper”.

      • Last season cesar had 24 games with 97 saves. He hasnt been playing this season due to factors not based on skill. But i feel sorry for people who base everything off stats, you should try actually watching people play. Cesar is so good that even as a benchwarmer in the championship he is still brazils number one. Oh and btw diego lopez is better than almost everyone on your list, you should maybe watch him play some time, or check his stat sheet, whichever floats your boat.

    • If by “Top 10 goalkeeper” he means “goalkeeper for a Top 10 ranked national team,” because no way is Cesar one of the top 10 goalkeepers right now (or, you know…ever…).

      • He isn’t now, but he definitely was top 10, maybe top 5 and some called him the best at one point in his career.

  6. wow….with Julio Cesar the MLS the championship is as good as theirs. There is a reason he’s Brazil’s no.1 for so long. Please don’t make it happen. They’ll be no hope for DC united…lol

  7. Wages charged to TFC likely to be a token amount. Not sure if it would be Cesar waiving the salary (hardly likely) or QPR eating most of it (since that’s what they are doing right now).

    I was thinking it might be Maarten Stekelenburg at Fulham, but given the Nelsen connection Cesar is totally plausible.

    Harsh to ask Bendik to bite the bullet on this but he’ll still be around as #1 after this.

  8. This would be a real shocker to me — don’t see it happening. Then again, was very surprised when the Bradley to TFC thing materialized so quckly, so who knows?

    • There is no way TFC is taking his salary. They already have 4 DP’s. THis is either BS or somehow they got a very good deal to pay him almost nothing

      • Do you know the rules for salary via loan moves in MLS? I certainly don’t.

        But they will obviously be taking on his salary, that is just how loans work, especially one sending him across the Atlantic.

      • “They will OBVIOUSLY be taking on his salary” – FAIL! There are no rules about this. His salary is paid by QPR. QPR can loan him out for any fee that they see fit / able to negotiate. In some cases, the fee is close to or equal to the salary. Someitmes, it’s higher than the salary. In a lot of cases it is way below the salary if the salary is inflated. Tottenham was paying only a fraction of Adebayor’s huge salary as a loan fee to Man City.

      • He’s on $6M a year. There is absolutely no way TFC is taking on his salary.

        My guess is 1) QPR wanted some sort of money and 2) Cesar needed an arrangement where he was guaranteed playing time prior to WC.

        #1 wasn’t possible with #2, so they decided to just go for #2. TFC will take him for four months and pay little / nothing in the process. All possible because of Ryan Nelsen’s relationship with Redknapp and MLS’s schedule.

    • Cesar probably has a hefty bank account plus a sporting incentive to see the field. Ideally you pull a Bradley and come here for bank, but I could also see coming here because it’s enough of a drop to make PT likely.

      That being said, I’m sure Cudicini had a similar idea in LA. if Cesar has “lost it” this league will eat him up as it has many a tourist before.

  9. There are worse things for preparing a Keeper than being shelled for 90 minutes game after game. Namely sitting on the bench. If this is true I wouldn’t be surprised if he may have even waived a large portion of his salary in order to get the loan in order to be in game shape for the WC

  10. TFC = the real Man City team? That’d be more “stars” than LA had at their Beckham height. At this point, Cesar would be smart to just pay for his own salary for a year.

    Garber must love the marketing potential of an MLS keeper starting for Brazil and winning the World Cup!

    • It would be big! Years ago, I had hoped DC United would have gone after Ollie Khan and tried to bring him out of retirement. Eventually I believe MLS will be bringing in top tier goalkeeping talent, maybe to the detriment of the league…


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