Toronto FC 1, Real Salt Lake 0 | 2016 MLS Match Recap
Tosaint Ricketts has been with Toronto FC for approximately two weeks, but already his presence is being felt.
Ricketts scored his first goal for Toronto FC since signing with them late last month, and it was enough to push the club to a 1-0 home win over Real Salt Lake on Wednesday night. The decisive strike at BMO Field in Toronto, Ontario, came in the 68th minute, eight minutes after Ricketts entered the match as a substitute for Jordan Hamilton.
Neither side was particularly sharp in the final third during the course of the 90 minutes, but Salt Lake had a pair of decent opportunities to take the lead that were thwarted by Toronto netminder Alex Bono.
The victory improved Toronto FC to 9-7-6 and moved them into second place in the Eastern Conference. Real Salt Lake fell to 9-7-7 on the year but remained in fifth place in the Western Conference.
- 68' - TOR - Tosaint Ricketts (Sebastian Giovinco, Jozy Altidore)
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- SUPER SUB: Tosaint Ricketts officially became a member of Toronto FC on July 20, and it took him all of two appearances to deliver. Ricketts came into Wednesday's game and made a quick impact by taking his 68th-minute chance with authority, a chance that came thanks to flicks from Jozy Altidore and Sebastian Giovinco. The Canadian international also added a dose of energy and aggressiveness to Toronto's attack during his 34-minute shift, giving him a solid case for more minutes in the upcoming matches.
- SLIMMEST OF MARGINS: Real Salt Lake won the possession battle and had more shots on goal (three) than Toronto FC (two) but still came away empty-handed. Part of that was down to TFC goalkeeper Alex Bono coming up big when needed, and another part was due to Real Salt Lake's lack of sharpness in the final third. Joao Plata was especially wasteful on a pair of promising chances on each side of halftime, as was Kyle Beckerman on an open look in the opening seconds.
- ROUTE ONE: Real Salt Lake will surely be kicking themselves after not securing at least a point in this showdown. Defensively, RSL was good enough to record a draw, but their inability to deal with a simple goal kick from Bono in the 68th minute allowed for Altidore and Giovinco to flick the ball into the path of Ricketts for the decisive tally. The goal could have been prevented, and a result could have been had.