Sebastian Giovinco leaves Toronto for Al-Hilal FC

A story that seemingly came out of nowhere over the last few weeks has reached its end. Toronto FC announced that they have sold Sebastian Giovinco to Saudi Arabian side Al-Hilal FC.

Giovinco leaves Major League Soccer as Toronto FC's all-time leading scorer with 83 goals and will be sorely missed by fans of the team and fans of the league as well.

Toronto wish Giovinco well despite not wanting to see him go

Sebastian Giovinco celebrates winning the MLS with Toronto | Source:
Sebastian Giovinco celebrates winning the MLS with Toronto | Source: USA TODAY Sports

Toronto FC General Manager Ali Curtis released a statement about Giovinco's sale, stating that as the team believed in consistency, this was not an easy decision to make. Curtis noted that he respected Giovinco and what he "meant for the team", and that his exit presents both "challenges and opportunities" for TFC. Curtis ended by saying that the team was "working diligently" to add a new Designated Player who and are confident that we will be adding a new Designated Player soon who will be "an exciting addition to our team".

TFC President Bill Manning also left a few words about Giovinco's departure as he believed it was an "extremely emotional transaction" for the club. Manning noted that Giovinco had shown his quality many times over the last four years and leaves the club as probably its best player ever. Manning ended his statement by wishing Giovinco and his family well with his new team.

Giovinco himself left a few word's with the teams official website, stating that he wanted to thank the fans and his former teammates for "four special years" in Toronto and he also thanked the club for helping him move into this new chapter in his career.

'Seba' gave Toronto a sense of relevancy they had not had before

Giovinco set the MLS alight time and time again | Source:
Giovinco set the MLS alight time and time again | Source:

Sebastian Giovinco first joined Toronto FC in 2015 and from the very beginning, proved to be one of the best players the MLS had to offer. With Toronto, Giovinco made 142 appearances in all competitions, scored 83 goals and picked up 64 assists along the way. He helped the 'Reds' to their first ever MLS Cup title in 2017 after helping the team reach the MLS Cup final in the previous year. Giovinco was also involved in Toronto's run to the CONCACAF Champions League final in 2018 but the team ultimately fell short. 'Seba' was also instrumental in helping Toronto achieve a historic treble in 2017 when they not only won the MLS Cup but also finished as the MLS Shield winners and Canadian Champions all in the same year.

Giovinco was also not far from gaining individual awards during his time in Major League Soccer and was named the Landon Donovan MLS MVP Award winner in 2015 along with the MLS Golden Boot and MLS Newcomer of the Year. The Italian was also named to the MLS Best XI three times, and the MLS All-Star team four times. Additionally, Giovinco also picked up the George Gross Memorial Trophy winner in 2017, the 2018 CONCACAF Champions League Golden Ball winner and was named to both the CONCACAF and CONCACAF Champions League Best XI in 2018.

Quotes via