Columbus Crew SC 0, Toronto FC 0 | MLS Cup Playoffs Recap
It's been 16 days since Columbus Crew SC and Toronto FC took the field in the Eastern Conference Semifinals and on Tuesday night both teams failed find the back of the net in a scoreless draw at MAPFRE Stadium.
The two teams entered the first leg of the Eastern Conference Championship making it very clear that scoring goals was the first priority but they will now head to Leg 2 at BMO Field with everything to play for.
Toronto failed to get a shot on target without the services of Jozy Altidore and Sebastian Giovinco while Columbus' best chance came in the 85th minute when TFC 'keeper Alex Bono made a stellar save on Harrison Afful with the rebound off the foot of Kekuta Manneh blocked.
The most controversial play came in the 52nd minute when Bono nicked Pedro Santos in the box but it appeared Santos was already going down before reaching Bono.
- OFF THE MARK: After scoring four goals in the first leg against New York City FC, Columbus were looking for a repeat attacking performance against Toronto. Despite some late chances, they were unable to come up with similar results. An away goal would be huge for them in Leg 2 but Gregg Berhatler’s team has to be disappointed that his team failed to get a goal at home.
- NEW LOOK: With Giovinco and Altidore out, head coach Greg Vanney decided to make some changes to his team’s shape in Columbus. Instead of his usual 3-5-2, Vanney had his team set up in a 4-1-4-1, a formation TFC had not played all season. They were able to keep a clean sheet, but a road goal would’ve probably made his team feel a little more comfortable going into Leg 2.
- MISSING PIECE: One player who will not be making the trip to Toronto is Artur. The Brazilian midfielder has had his moments in the Audi 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs, including a shot that almost found the upper 90 in the 72nd minute, but he will miss the second leg due to yellow card accumulation.
- CLB: Wed. Nov. 29 at Toronto (7:30 pm ET; FS1, FOX Deportes; TSN1/4/5, TVAS)
- TOR: Wed. Nov. 29 vs. Columbus (7:30 pm ET; FS1, FOX Deportes; TSN1/4/5, TVAS)