Toronto FC vs. Chivas USA | MLS Match Preview
TORONTO FC vs CHIVAS USA
BMO FIELD, Toronto, Ont.
Sept. 21, 2014 (WEEK 28, MLS Game #273)
3 p.m. ET (UDN; SNet 360, KDOC)
Two clubs looking for a vital victory to right their ships meet when Toronto FC play host to Chivas USA on Sunday afternoon at BMO Field. Toronto FC have seen their winless streak reach six matches and now sit three points behind fifth place and the final playoff position in the Eastern Conference, following their 1-1 draw with Chicago last weekend. Chivas USA are on a 10-game winless run and on the verge of playoff elimination, coming off a 4-0 home loss to Sporting KC last weekend.
REFEREE: Edvin Jurisevic. AR1 (bench): Adam Garner; AR2 (opposite): Mark Cahen; 4th: Jorge Gonzalez
MLS Career: 79 games; FC/gm: 22.5; Y/gm: 3.4; R: 15; pens: 12
SUSPENDED: CHV: Erick Torres (through Sept. 21)
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: TOR: Michael Bradley, Justin Morrow … CHV: Erick Torres
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: TOR: Steven Caldwell, Jackson, Dominic Oduro, Warren Creavalle, Collen Warner, Gilberto … CHV: Marky Delgado, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Agustin Pelletieri, Donny Toia, Nathan Sturgis, Leandro Barrera, Nigel Reo-Coker
DISABLED LIST: CHV: Thomas McNamara
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: none
ALL-TIME (12 meetings): Toronto FC 2 wins, 6 goals … Chivas USA 9 wins, 21 goals … Ties 1
AT TORONTO (6 meetings): Toronto FC 2 wins, 5 goals … Chivas USA 3 wins, 8 goals … Ties 1
LAST YEAR (MLS)
7/17: CHV 1, TOR 0 (Torres 79)
- This is the only meeting of the season between the two clubs.
- Chivas USA haven’t lost to Toronto FC in the last five meetings between the clubs. They have four wins in that time, including a 1-0 victory in the only meeting a season ago, July 17 at StubHub Center.
- Chivas USA have won all six meetings in the series played in Carson. TFC has scored just once in those games, that goal coming in a 3-1 loss in 2008, now 420 minutes without a road goal vs. Chivas.
- Coaches record: Greg Vanney vs. CHV: first game … Wilmer Cabrera vs. TOR: first game
Toronto FC saw their winless run extended to six matches, despite coming back for a late 1-1 draw with the Chicago Fire on Saturday evening at Toyota Park. TFC sit in seventh place in the Eastern Conference, with 34 points from 27 matches.
- The Fire took the lead in the 11th minute. Right back Lovel Palmer escaped his marker to meet Sanna Nyassi’s short corner from the left and deftly directed his near-post header past TFC goalkeeper Joe Bendik.
- The Fire then had a glorious opportunity to double their lead after Bendik took Grant Ward down in the box in the 56th minute and referee David Gantar pointed to the spot. But Jeff Larentowicz saw the resulting penalty brilliantly saved and Bendik further made amends with a superb block to deny Quincy Amarikwa on the ensuing rebound.
- Toronto FC then hit for the equalizer when substitute Dwayne De Rosario slotted home from close range on a corner kick. The visitors almost stole all three points when Gilberto dispossessed Bakary Soumare in injury time, but his finish was waved off because of a foul by the TFC striker.
- TFC head coach Greg Vanney made five changes to the team that suffered a 2-0 loss to Philadelphia Union at BMO Field. Justin Morrow and Ashtone Morgan came into the back four, and Warren Creavalle, Kyle Bekker and Jackson also came into the side, replacing Doneil Henry, Bradley Orr, Collen Warner, Dwayne De Rosario and Luke Moore.
- TORONTO FC (4-1-2-3): Joseph Bendik - Mark Bloom, Justin Morrow, Nick Hagglund, Ashtone Morgan - Warren Creavalle (Luke Moore 59) - Kyle Bekker (Daniel Lovitz 80), Michael Bradley - Dominic Oduro (Dwayne De Rosario 59), Gilberto, Jackson.
- Toronto FC snapped their three-game losing slide with the draw, but still saw their overall winless run extended to six games. Greg Vanney is 0-2-1 since taking over as the head coach.
- “I’m super proud of the guys,” Vanney said. “I challenged them at halftime and they answered the challenge. They can see and believe that we still have something to fight for, that we have all to play for here. We should have got more out of it but I’m extremely pleased with the competitiveness, the desire and the drive. They should have been rewarded with three points in the end but we’ll keep on pushing.”
- Dwayne De Rosario scored his first goal of the season. It was his first goal since last Aug. 24 – when he scored for D.C. United vs. Toronto FC; it was also the 104th goal of his MLS career, sixth-most in MLS history.
- The De Rosario goal was the first for TFC since the 2-2 draw with Chicago on Aug. 23, and put an end to their goalless drought after 370 minutes, the fourth-longest scoreless streak in MLS this season.
- Joe Bendik stopped a penalty kick for the first time in his MLS career, opponents 8-for-8 from the spot before he denied Jeff Larentowicz.
- “It can’t go without saying that Joe made some phenomenal saves that kept us in it but, that’s what seasons are about and this can be a turning point,” said Vanney. “This group learned a little bit tonight about itself. They learned about the character and fight they still have in them, and I think that they are unhappy with what they thought was three points.”
- Kyle Bekker made his first start for Toronto FC since June 7, coming into a three-man central midfield and playing 80 minutes. Before coming on at halftime of the second Philadelphia match, he had made three substitute appearances totaling just 13 minutes in the previous 14 matches.
- “We needed more movement ahead of the ball, we needed to move forward a little more. We came out with, what one could argue, a slightly more defensive posture but really was wanting Michael [Bradley] to push forward a little bit more, and Kyle Bekker to push forward a little bit more,” said Vanney. “They were getting on the ball, which is good for us, but we didn’t have much to move forward.”
- Jackson made his first start since Aug. 16 in a new role, as a winger in a front three, with he and Dominic Oduro flanking Gilberto.
- Ashtone Morgan returned from a one-match ban to make his second start of the season, playing the full 90 minutes at left back.
- TFC also conceded another set-piece goal, the Fire goal scored from a corner kick the ninth allowed this year from a dead-ball situation, tied for third-most in MLS (Chivas USA, Real Salt Lake, 10 each).
- “Again, another set piece goal. We need to be better at it. It comes down to individual accountability, it comes down to concentration and fighting through things,” Vanney said. “I thought in the first half, we were a little too nice. They were winning their spaces and skipping out of challenges. We needed to be a little stronger and our challenges a little tougher on the field. It shows that we are present, and ready for the battle that is there.”
Chivas USA saw their winless run stretched to 10 games, falling 4-0 to Sporting Kansas City on Friday evening at StubHub Center. Chivas USA sit in ninth place in the Western Conference with 24 points from 28 games.
- Sporting took the lead in the 40th minute. Dom Dwyer ran onto a long diagonal ball from Graham Zusi, and took a touch to send it past an onrushing Dan Kennedy. It was his 19th goal this year, a new Kansas City single-season club record.
- The visitors then doubled their lead in first half stoppage time. Antonio Dovale’s curling shot bounced off the far post, but Benny Feilhaber was first to the rebound, getting an acrobatic touch on the ball to knock it into the open net.
- The lead was 3-0 seven minutes after the halftime break, when Zusi picked up the ball on the edge of the box, dribbled, and shot through a collection of Chivas defenders.
- The rout was complete in the 87th minute, when substitute Claudio Bieler got the ball on a breakaway and pushed it wide of Kennedy on the right, finishing with a tightly-angled shot outside the right post into the far side netting.
- Chivas USA head coach Wilmer Cabrera made five changes to the team that fell 3-0 to the Columbus Crew at Crew Stadium. Jhon Kennedy Hurtado and Bobby Burling came into the back four in place of Eriq Zavaleta and Andrew Jean-Baptiste, Leandro Barrera and Nathan Sturgis started in the midfield for Marky Delgado and Agustin Pelletieri, and Marvin Chavez came in up top in favor of Ryan Finley.
- CHIVAS USA (4-4-2): Dan Kennedy - Akira Kaji, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Bobby Burling, Tony Lochhead - Leandro Barrera (Donny Toia 69), Nigel Reo-Coker, Nathan Sturgis, Eric Avila - Marvin Chavez (Matthew Dunn 61), Felix Borja (Eriq Zavaleta 75).
- Chivas USA lost their fifth consecutive game, conceding four goals for a second time in three games in the defeat by Sporting KC.
- “They showed more desire to win than us and they did it. They did it the way where we continue to give away possibilities and goals and it looks silly. But that’s mentality and we need to get better mentally,” said Chivas USA head coach Wilmer Cabrera. “At the end it was a great opportunity to see the young guys because at this point we need to see what is the possibility with the young guys to give them the time to play and to refresh the possibility for them.”
- Chivas USA saw their winless streak extended to 10 games, the fourth-longest in club history; they have been shut out in eight of their last nine games. Over the course of the 10-game stretch, Chivas USA have conceded 24 goals while scoring three.
- “We need to find a way to be able to work us back into games if things go wrong,” goalkeeper Dan Kennedy said. “I definitely think that’s something we can improve on. I think we can also improve in not getting that first goal.”
- After coming off the substitutes’ bench for each of the previous three matches, Marvin Chávez made his first start since Aug. 9, partnering Felix Borja from the start of the match for the first time since his arrival at Chivas USA.
- “The effort is always there for every match. The issue is that the results are not the appropriate ones that we as a group desire along with the coaching staff,” Chávez said. “We’re in a tough spot right now, but the important thing is that we have honorable men in this locker room and we are going to turn it around. It’s about continuing to work and continuing to persevere, above all. There are players in here with long track records who are hungry to turn this club around.”
- Matthew Dunn came off the substitutes’ bench for the final 29 minutes, his second career MLS appearance and first since July 25.
- Eriq Zavaleta also came off the substitutes’ bench for the final 15 minutes – this time on the front line. Zavaleta had played exclusively as a center back with Chivas USA, starting 11 league matches in central defense this season.
- “He’s a young kid who shows that he has a good personality, good dynamic, and he’s having fun playing and he decides to play in these type of games with a lot of pressure and he shows he can play. He’s going to be beside a very good player … so it was important to him,” said Cabrera. “The same for Donnie Toia who needs to learn that physicality, that mentality, and we wanted to see Eriq Zavaleta. He came from the Seattle Sounders at the beginning of the year as a forward but we use him as a central back and to see how it goes. This is the moment to see how we can explore new possibilities because everything that we have tried doesn’t work.”
- Leandro Barrera returned to the Chivas USA midfield following a three-match absence, while Nathan Sturgis was reinserted into the group following two matches out of the first team.