Preview: Toronto look for first points in home tilt with DC
TORONTO FC vs D.C. UNITED
BMO FIELD, Toronto, Ont.
May 5, 2012 (WEEK 9, MLS Game #78)
4 p.m. ET (SNET Ont; CSN-MA)
Aiming to halt a historic slide in its tracks, Toronto FC will try to take advantage of D.C. United when the clubs face off Saturday afternoon at BMO Field. TFC have lost all seven games to open the 2012 MLS season, after their late 3-2 loss at Real Salt Lake last weekend, though they come off a scoreless draw at Montreal in the Canadian Championship at midweek. United are on the second game of a road swing, coming off a 5-3 loss at San Jose on Wednesday night that put an end to a seven-game undefeated run.
REFEREE: Mark Kadlecik. SAR (bench): Greg Barkey; JAR (opposite): Philippe Briere; 4th: John McCloskey
MLS Career: 18 games; FC/gm: 24.2; Y/gm: 3.4; R: 5; pens: 6
- TORONTO FC - OUT: FW Nicholas Lindsay (L knee surgery recovery); GK Stefan Frei (L lower leg); DF Dicoy Williams (R knee surgery recovery); MF Nick Soolsma (L hamstring strain)
- D.C. UNITED - OUT: DF Ethan White (R knee surgery); MF Lance Rozeboom (L knee ACL tear); DF Emiliano Dudar (L hamstring strain); QUESTIONABLE: MF Kurt Morsink (L foot neurectomy); FW Josh Wolff (L hamstring strain); DF Dejan Jakovic (L ankle sprain)
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: none
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: none
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: TOR: Julian de Guzman ... DC: Maicon Santos
ALL-TIME (12 meetings): Toronto FC 3 wins, 17 goals ... United 7 wins, 26 goals ... Ties 2
AT TORONTO (6 meetings): Toronto FC 2 wins, 4 goals ... United 4 wins, 7 goals ... Ties 0
RETURN MATCHES: 5/19: D.C. United vs. Toronto FC, 7:30 p.m.; 10/6: Toronto FC vs. D.C. United, 1 p.m. (TSN/RDS)
LAST YEAR (MLS):
4/16: TOR 0, DC 3 (Pontius 5, 73; Davies (10)
8/6: DC 3, TOR 3 (De Rosario 19, 64, 88 - Marosevic 52; de Guzman 69; Koevermans 86)
- D.C. United have won on their last two trips to BMO Field, including a 3-0 victory last April 16. In six trips all-time to Toronto, United have come away with victories in four.
- Toronto FC have come away with points on their last three trips to RFK Stadium. They've played to 3-3 draws in two of those, wrapped around a 3-2 win in 2010.
- For TFC, it will be a home-and-home series with United over three weeks. United have games against Houston and Colorado in between the two meetings.
- Coaches record: Aron Winter vs. DC: P2 W0 L1 D1 ... Ben Olsen vs. TOR: P4 W2 L1 D1
Toronto FC lost for an MLS-record seventh time in as many games to open a league season, Real Salt Lake scored a late winner for a 3-2 win Saturday at Rio Tinto Stadium. TFC is in 10th place in the Eastern Conference.
HIGHLIGHTS: Toronto lose a heartbreaker in Utah
- Real Salt Lake took the lead after just seven minutes. Defender Jamison Olave headed a corner back across the goalmouth, where center back Chris Schuler redirected the ball on frame. With goalkeeper Milos Kocic scrambling to get back in position, Kyle Beckerman toed the ball over the line.
- Toronto FC had a wonderful chance to pull level in the 16th minute when Eric Avila drew a penalty after to a poorly timed slide tackle from Olave. But Torsten Frings sent his spot kick wide of the left post.
- TFC did even terms when Avila took it upon himself to get the equalizer three minutes after the break. Ryan Johnson flicked a pass to Avila, who tricked his way around Olave on the edge of the area and curled the ball into the right corner of the goal.
- But the score lasted until the 57th minute. A cross came in from the right side, and TFC's Richard Eckersley and RSL striker Alvaro Saborio both challenged for the ball, which unluckily ricocheted off the Toronto defender's knee and past goalkeeper Milos Kocic.
- Yet once again Toronto clawed back into the game. On a 78th-minute corner kick, substitute Doneil Henry rose above a pack of attackers and defenders in the RSL goalmouth and headed the ball home.
- Real consigned TFC to history three minutes into stoppage time. Javier Morales gave himself space on the edge of the box following a throw-in and sent a centering pass to Beckerman, who knocked it back to Jonny Steele. He stepped through the ball and gave Kocic no chance for the dramatic winner.
- TFC head coach Aron Winter made two changes to the team that suffered a 3-2 loss to the Chicago Fire at BMO Field. Miguel Aceval and Julian de Guzman came into the team, in place of Matt Stinson and Joao Plata.
- TORONTO FC (4-3-3): Milos Kocic - Richard Eckersley (Doneil Henry 59), Adrian Cann, Miguel Aceval, Ashtone Morgan (Logan Emory 76) - Julian de Guzman, Torsten Frings, Terry Dunfield (Joao Plata 68) - Reggie Lambe, Ryan Johnson, Eric Avila.
Power 5: Early Headlines - Winless in Toronto
- Toronto FC have matched the 1999 Kansas City Wizards for the worst start of a season in league history at 0-7-0. The MLS record losing streak was set by the MetroStars, 12 games from July 4-Sept. 5, 1999.
- "That is never good to see," head coach Aron Winter said. "But I think that today was a good moment because we played well enough to get at least one point. But the way that we lost is just terrible."
- After scoring two goals total over their first five league games, Toronto FC have now scored two goals in each of the last two. But they've allowed three goals in each contest as well.
- "It's not even a question if we are working hard or not, it's pretty obvious that the guys are continuously giving their best, 110 percent," defender Julian de Guzman said. "... Every game that we've played this year there's been a lot of positives to walk out with. We've never been dominated in any game that we've played."
- The first player to graduate from the Toronto FC Academy to the first team, Doneil Henry scored his first MLS goal in TFC's 3-2 loss at Real Salt Lake.
- "What can I say? It hurts," Henry said. "We didn't deserve it. We all had our chances. We could have put the game away a lot earlier."
- In a second consecutive start, his first two since the opening match of the season, Eric Avila won a penalty kick then scored a goal, his first of the season. Avila has now scored one goal in each of the last four MLS seasons.
- "In the first half, we were doing well containing them, in the second half we wanted to push. Even though we were one goal down we just wanted to push at them and keep going," Avila said. "The second half we came out nice. The movement of the ball was nice and I got open at the top of the box. I missed the first goal in the first half, so I wanted to just come up and help out."
- On Wednesday, TFC opened their Canadian Championship defense with a good result, getting a scoreless draw with the MontrÈal Impact at Olympic Stadium. The return match will be played May 9 at BMO Field.
- Here's the TFC team: Milos Kocic - Miguel Aceval, Doneil Henry, Ashtone Morgan, Adrian Cann; Julian deGuzman, Reggie Lambe (Richard Eckersley 73), Torsten Frings, Terry Dunfield, Ryan Johnson; Eric Avila (Luis Silva 60)
D.C. United saw their two-game winning run and seven-game unbeaten streak put to a swift end, falling 5-3 to the San Jose Earthquakes on Wednesday evening at Buck Shaw Stadium. United are in second place in the Eastern Conference with 15 points from 10 games.
HIGHLIGHTS: DC's wild game in San Jose
- United took the lead in the eighth minute. After Danny Cruz was halted on a long run through midfield, Dwayne De Rosario rushed in unchecked for a loose ball, delivering a scalding shot from all of 30 yards high to the left side of helpless San Jose goalkeeper Jon Busch.
- But the Quakes exploded to take the lead before halftime. In the 19th minute, Steven Lenhart walked onto the rebound after a Tressor Moreno attempt was blocked and lashing it home from just outside the area.
- Chris Wondolowski doubled the lead two minutes later, after a series of one- and two-touch passes from Khari Stephenson to Moreno and Simon Dawkins concluded with the Englishman feeding Wondolowski a step inside the penalty spot for a cool finish.
- Justin Morrow widened the gap in the 31st minute after his shot from a deflected corner kick was deflected by United midfielder Danny Cruz, leaving 'keeper Joe Willis no chance.
- United pulled a goal back in the 64th minute, when De Rosario sprung Andy Najar on the right endline, and his cross to the back post was met with a diving header by Daniel Woolard.
- But Wondolowski got his second of the night in the 69th minute, snapping home a header from a Steven Beitashour cross from the right flank. Lenhart then recorded the final San Jose tally in the 74th, chesting in a rebound after Marvin Chavez pinged the crossbar.
- United scored a late goal when Hamdi Salihi then ran onto De Rosario's lead pass in the 88th minute and chipped the ball over Quakes goalkeeper Jon Busch.
- United head coach Ben Olsen made one change to the team that took a 3-2 win against the Houston Dynamo at RFK Stadium. Marcelo Saragosa came into the side for Emiliano Dudar.
- D.C. UNITED (4-3-1-2): Joe Willis - Robbie Russell, Brandon McDonald, Perry Kitchen, Daniel Woolard (Chris Korb 76) - Danny Cruz (Hamdi Salihi 69), Marcelo Saragosa (Andy Najar 46), Nick DeLeon - Dwayne De Rosario - Maicon Santos, Chris Pontius.
Anatomy of a Goal: Maicon Santos vs. Houston
- With Emiliano Dudar out with a hamstring injury, Olsen shifted Perry Kitchen from a holding midfield role into central defense.
- "I think we missed a center back today, and that's not against Perry (Kitchen) or Robbie (Russell), but they're not center backs. (Emiliano) Dudar's out, and Dejan (Jakovic), they would have really helped out on a big (guy) like (Steven) Lenhart, who had a good day," said Olsen. "They were opportunistic. It seemed like when they had good looks, they did very well with them."
- Marcelo Saragosa, who replaced Kitchen in the deep-lying central midfield spot, was sacrificed in favor of Andy Najar with United two goals down at the break.
- "We have to survive. There are a lot of teams with players in key positions out. We just have to make it work," said Olsen. "We played a very good team (in San Jose). They have the record they have for a reason. They are dynamic with their attack, and again that's missing a key guy or two in the back (for us)."
- Dwayne De Rosario scored his second goal in as many games, a long-range strike to give United an early lead. De Rosario again figured in a slightly deeper role in central midfield, behind the strike pair of Maicon Santos and Chris Pontius, partnered up top for a fourth consecutive game.
- "It was a mutual agreement [between Olsen and me]," he said. "I like playing that position, and being able to see the field to create. When we have guys as good as they are, with the depth now, I am able to focus on that one position. I'm able work with the defensive midfielder and the wide midfielders to create a good flow and rhythm within our team."
- De Rosario collected two assists on the night, and now leads MLS with seven assists, one more than Graham Zusi of Sporting Kansas City.
- "Away from home, three goals, you think that's good enough to at least come away with a point, and we didn't. We came away with nothing, and we're disappointed about that part," De Rosario said.
- Daniel Woolard scored his third career goal in MLS and his second in as many seasons with United since coming to the club from the Chicago Fire.
- "I just tried to put enough on it to get it past Jon Busch, and was able to," Woolard said. "It gave us a lift there. It was too bad we couldn't keep it to just a one-goal deficit for very long, because if it was one goal, we're definitely in it. Unfortunately, we weren't very good defensively tonight, so it didn't matter."
- Hamdi Salihi also scored his first MLS goal in seven appearances, the last two as a substitute after starting five of the first six games.
- "I was disappointed in the loss, but there was a lot of fight in this team," Olsen said. "I love the character of this team. There are a bunch of guys who don't know how to quit. We still have to learn some lessons, but I'm still proud of the guys tonight."