Thursday, May 19, 2005 [TORONTO, ON] - The Toronto Lynx announced today that they have acquired the rights to defender, Abraham Francois and striker, Sita-Taty Matondo, from the Montreal Impact in exchange for striker, Ali Gerba. Francois, who is an experienced defender in the USL First Division, was a target of the Lynx head coach during the off-season but re-signed with the Impact instead. The 28-year old from Montreal has spent parts of four seasons with the Impact (2000, 2001, 2003, 2005) earning two "Team of Week" selections in 2003 and helping the Impact post the best defensive record in the league. Internationally, Francois has played with the Canadian Olympic team and also won a gold medal with Canada at the 1997 Francophone Games in Madagascar. Coach Busby became familiar with Francois when he was head coach for the Ottawa Wizards in 2002 and the Wizards captured the regular season title, League Cup and playoff title. Francois' athleticism and aggressiveness will be a fine addition to the Lynx defense as they look to turn around the 2005 season after a frustrating 0-5-2 start.

The Lynx also acquired talented Canadian striker, Sita-Taty Matondo, as part of the agreement with the Impact. Matondo has represented Canada at all levels: U17, U20 and Olympic Team. On January 18, 2003, he made his debut with the Canadian World Cup team against the United States. As a rookie with the Impact in 2003, Matondo scored 4 goals in only 696 minutes playing primarily as a substitute. Following his successful professional debut, Matondo joined Landskrona of the Swedish Division 2 before returning to the Impact for the 2005 season. At only 20-years of age, Matondo has only scratched the surface of his playing potential and should be an offensive force for the Lynx for many years to come.

In exchange for Francois and Matondo, the Lynx will part with 2004 leading scorer and team MVP Ali Gerba. Gerba who resides in Montreal will begin his 3rd stint with the Impact and will appreciate being closer to his family. Last season, Gerba scored a Lynx record 15 goals and 34 points. In 24 career matches with Montreal, Gerba has recorded 6 goals and 3 assists. " It's always difficult parting with such a talented player as Ali. But in the end, we try and accommodate the personal needs of our players while at the same time making the necessary adjustments to our roster to improve our performance on the field and continue to provide our fans with high quality competitive play ", says Nicole Hartrell, the Chief Operating Officer of the Club.


Fresh off a victory in their inaugural W-League regular season match, the Toronto Lady Lynx will host the New York Magic this Saturday, May 21 at Centennial Park Stadium with a 4pm kickoff. After a hard-fought, 3-1 overtime victory over the Vermont Lady Voltage on Sunday, the Lady Lynx will be looking to continue their momentum into this weekend's match. Head Coach, Brett Mosen, will finally have his full roster together for their first week of training as a team in preparation for Saturday's match. Substitute striker, Kim Warner of Aurora was the hero of Sunday's match, scoring 2 goals in overtime to lead the Lady Lynx to victory. Her performance earned a spot on the W-League Team of the Week, the first such honour for a Lady Lynx player. After the Lady Voltage took an early lead against the run of play, Canadian international midfielder, Amanda Cicchini, equalized for the Lady Lynx, recording the first goal in franchise history. The Lady Lynx dominated play, outshooting the Lady Voltage 23-5 and displayed the quality soccer expected from the highest level of women's soccer in North America.

The New York Magic also opened their 2005 season this past weekend with a 2-0 home loss to the defending Eastern Conference Champion, New Jersey Wildcats. Despite a roster stacked with internationals, the Magic trailed by only one goal into the final minute of the match. The Magic boast an impressive roster as well, led by US youth international defender, Nicole Krzysik, the 2004 W-League U19 Player of the Year while playing with the New Jersey Lady Stallions. She is joined in a stellar defense by Welsh International, Eleri Earshaw, and Irish International, Delores Deasley. The Magic also made a splash this week announcing the signing of Jayne Ludlow, the 2004 Premier League Most Valuable Player while playing with Arsenal FC.

"This game will be a tough challenge, but we will be going in a little better prepared after a full week's training with the full squad now that all players have finished with college and university commitments," explained Mosen. "The mood in camp was good after our win, but we realize there are tough games ahead. The fan support last week was tremendous and we hope everyone enjoyed the game enough to want to support us again this week!"

Tickets for the match are still available by calling 416-251-4625 ext. 31 or visiting the Lynx online at


Last September, the Toronto Lynx Soccer Club once again kicked off one of their most successful community outreach programs: an effective school soccer program for GTA Schools with the mission of assisting educators to enhance their physical education programs. The Lynx have been delivering soccer clinics along with educational presentations to schools since 1998. This season, the educational presentations feature anti-smoking sessions in partnership with the Lung Association and anti-bullying sessions in partnership with the Canadian Safe School Network. Lynx players, Joe Mattacchione, Rhumba Munthali, Andres Arango, Josue Mayard and Ali Gerba have been the driving force in helping students improve their tactical and technical skills since the fall. French language schools are also taking advantage of the French speaking skills of Josue and Ali to deliver the clinics and presentations entirely in French. Some upcoming clinics over the next week include sessions to the following schools: St. Piux, St. Mary's, Queen of Heaven and St. Jerome.

This wonderful educational program is capped off every spring with a field trip to witness the highest level of men's pro soccer in Canada to inspire the students to greater heights. This season the school day is taking place on Tuesday May 31st with an 11:00 kick off when they take on the Rochester Raging Rhinos with a projected attendance of approximately 4000 students/educators. Many school bands and choirs will be showcasing their musical talents during the pre-game ceremonies while student representatives from all schools in attendance will take part in the half time soccer skills contest. For the first time, the Toronto Lady Lynx will also be hosting a school day which will be taking place on Wednesday June 8th at 11:00 when the Lady Lynx take on the Sudbury Canadians.


416-251-4625 ext. 25

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