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Sep 19, 2013

Source: Toronto to name MLS exec GM

Toronto FC is set to name MLS Senior Director of Player Relations and Competition Tim Bezbatchenko to be its new general manager, a source told ESPNFC.com on Thursday.

The club has scheduled a news conference for Friday morning, and a source confirmed to ESPNFC.com that at that time the club will announce Bezbatchenko's appointment.

Bezbatchenko, a former player with the third tier Pittsburgh Riverhounds, replaces Kevin Payne, who was fired two weeks ago as Toronto's president and general manager after serving just nine months in those positions. Payne was one of several executives to be let go after Tim Leiweke took over last June as CEO and President of Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment, which owns Toronto FC.

Leiweke said at the time of Payne's ousting that he wanted to fill the GM position with someone who was a "capologist," and the fact that Bezbatchenko worked extensively on player contracts during his time with MLS would hint strongly at someone who understands the nuances of working within the league's salary cap.

According to Bezbatchenko's LinkedIn profile, he has worked for MLS since August 2010. Prior to that he was an associate with the law firm Shearman & Sterling. He was also an NSCAA Academic All-American at the University of Richmond, and played for the Riverhounds from 2004 to 2005.

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