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Posts Tagged ‘Toronto FC’

Columbus Who?

April 22, 2011 3 comments

This place is disgusting!

Have you ever been to Columbus Ohio? I really, really hope not. Unless you are a student of Ohio State University or a fan of food from x-NFLer Eddie George’s restaurant, there is absolutely NO reason to be there AT ALL. Trust me, I speak from experience. No I’m not proud to admit but I have made the drive. In all fairness to myself though,  I was drunk on MLSE cool aid and I love my hometown team.

Upon our arrival the first time, all of us sensed something different. Something off. Kinda like the feeling one gets driving through Buffalo – only worse. It did not feel safe but at the same time we didn’t feel threatened. It was really bizarre. And then there was the odour; this stench. Anyway, the reason we were there along with a couple thousand TFC supporters was to support Toronto FC. Unfortunately Columbus is the closest team geographically in the MLS to Toronto (c’mon Saputo!) so there was an artificial rivalry created to spark interest. We lost the match but we were a new team and they won the double that year so it was to be expected – but disappointing nonetheless.

After the match we decided to grab a bite to eat at this Mexican restaurant and we were taken by surprise when we saw a sign that said that guns are prohibited. You know there is a problem when you see a “No GUNS allowed” sign on the door of a family restaurant! The whole experience just turned our stomachs but for some reason we decided to give the town a second chance the following year – the year of the police and media debacle. NEVER AGAIN!

Who gives a rats ass about the Trillium Cup anyway? It’s kind of like the Carlsberg cup with the main difference being that at least the Carlsberg Cup brings some cool teams to BMO field – Club Atlético Independiente from Argentina being one. Bragging rights? I don’t need or want bragging rights over a place like Columbus. They are beneath us and should not be mentioned in the same thought – much less the same sentence as Toronto.

No Guns Allowed?

However (oh how I HATE this part), the Columbus Crew has been consistently one of the better teams in the entire MLS since TFC has been in existence. They even won an MLS Cup in 2008 and the 2008 and 2009 Supporters’ Shields. The team is completely different this year but after a shaky start against DC Untied in week 1, they have gone undefeated and have not conceded a goal in that period (3 games). They will also be coming to BMO Field knowing full well that they have NEVER  lost to TFC. They are the Trillium Cup holders and every time I hear that I can’t help but to think that maybe they should plant some trilliums outside Crew stadium….you know, to pretty the place up a bit!

The Reds look to be in tough this weekend but when you take a look at the situation, it’s not that bad. The law of averages will dictate that the Crew will lose eventually and they are not a very strong team (they have BMO reject Julius James) so I’m thinking a loss will come sooner than later.  They may have not conceded a goal in 3, they have only scored 2 in 3 (both in the same game). Then you have to hope that things can only get better at BMO after that horrific show last weekend against D.C.

There will be a couple of absences/changes to the TFC line up. Ty Harden is out on suspension and Adrian Cann is carrying a rib injury. So that leaves Nana and Jamaican International Dicoy Williams at the back in the middle. Out wide I think we’ll see Yourassowski get the start on the left with new addition Richard Eckersley on the right. Danleigh Borman has played well (not including the DC game) but there are a lot of games coming up so I see him being rested. In the midfield I see De Guzman and for some reason I also see Peterson back in the fray. Not because I think he’s playing well but because he seems to be a favorite of Winter’s for some unknown reason.  Tchani to me has not looked very consistent so something in my gut is saying he’ll sit; to maybe come on as a sub. At right-wing it should be Martina on the right with Santos on the left. Stevanovic NEEDS to sit. He’s a frustrating player because you see his talent, but something doesn’t seem right on the top floor. He tends to hold on to the ball for about a 5 count too long. He sometimes looks like the kid in the school yard who won’t pass the ball to the other kids. And when he losses it, he goes down injured – only to get back up after a few minutes, limp for a bit then demand that he get the ball back. I think sitting this one out would do him good. I also believe that Santos is not an attacking midfielder and should be played as an advanced striker or out on the left-wing. Up front I see Alan Gordon in the game since he says he should be ready. Now the biggest concern on this team to me is who to play in the attacking mid role. I’d like to say Cordon but I don’t think he’s there quite yet. But he will be sooner rather than later. That only leaves Zavarise which is not bad, but not the best either.

I’m predicting a 1-0 TFC win from a goal in the second half by Santos.


Oh and going back to that stench, we figured out the source. It turns out it was coming from the “Columbus Crew Massive” which is ironic because although we could smell them, we certainly could not hear or see them!!
Go Reds!

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TFC 2 DC United 2

March 12, 2011 1 comment

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Image via Wikipedia

Toronto FC has wrapped up their pre-season with a draw against last seasons bottom of the table team DC United. Although the Reds did not look overly impressive, signs of improvement were apparent.

On loan striker and former U.S. international Charlie Davies got United on the score sheet first with a nicely taken shot that left Frei in the Toronto goal little chance. Then newly signed TFC midfielder Gianluca Zavarise was taken down in the area leading to a successful penalty shot taken by skipper Dwayne Derosario evening the score at 1-1.

Shortly after, Maicon Santos was sent in on goal by Frei and the Brazilian made no mistake slotting the ball past Canadian keeper Pat Onstad making the score 2-1 for Toronto.

Things were looking good for TFC until trialist Mikael Yourassowsky was shown his second yellow card for a careless tackle in the defending third. DC was able to capitalize on the man advantage leveling the score at 2’s but was not able to put the resilient Reds away as the match ended 10 men TFC 2, DC United 2.

To me the real story was the post game interview with Adrian Cann and coach Aaron Winter. Have a look for yourself  at the link below and if this doesn’t tell you that Winter is in control of this team then nothing will!

http://torontofc.neulion.com/tfc/console.jsp?catid=2&id=2856

TFC Starting Lineup:

Stefan Frei, Dan Gargan, Nana Attakora, Ty Harden, Mikael Yourassowsky, Natan Sturgis, Oscar Cordon, Dwayne De Rosario, Gianluca Zavarise, Jacob Peterson, Maicon Santos

Substitutes: Adrian Cann, Javier Martina, Matt Stinson, Matt Gold, Keith Makubuya

Vancouver WhiteCaps – The Realists!

November 9, 2010 1 comment

Vancouver Whitecaps Residency

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The Vancouver Whitecaps have made some headlines recently with the announcement of Dutchman Richard Grootscholten as technical director and head coach of their full-time residency program with the aim of developing players for Major League Soccer. To me, this is a very big move for the club and the MLS itself. MLS or even Dutch clubs will never be on the same level as clubs from the larger European Leagues and the sooner the MLS comes to terms with this idea, the better.

The Dutch have realized this and now they are one of the best countries at developing young talent. On a club level, the Dutch are not able to compete because of high player salaries created by the billion dollar clubs like Real Madrid and Manchester United. When was the last time teams like Ajax, PSV or Feyenoord were successful in the Europa or Champions League? This is simply because these Dutch teams develop young players and as soon as the players are good enough, it’s off to Real Madrid, Inter Milan, Man U etc for a healthy transfer fee. Also, didn’t the Dutch make the World Cup final? The players may be leaving the Netherlands but no matter where they go, they still remain Dutch. So when the World cup rolls around they are all in Oranje.

Even players who were not born in the Netherlands but were developed there come back and become naturalized. See Jonathan DeGuzman!! Oh how that hurts!

If all of the teams in the MLS foster this idea then it will be a win win situation for everybody involved. Young players will have a place to develop outside of the pressure and spotlight of the large clubs in a place where all of the attention is not on the beautiful game. They would also be able to develop in a country (Canada or US) where the standard of living is quite high and the educational system is good. The MLS would benefit from the regular revenue stream of selling young players as well as having players of high technical ability on display (instead of domestic “filler” type players) in the league. In addition, graduates of the system who have been sold to large clubs would be more likely to come back to the MLS to re-gain lost form or to even end their careers where it all started. The MLS would not be looked at as an inferior league but a league that is good at nurturing and developing players. Also, the CSA and USSF would benefit because our home grown talent would have better players to develop with making for better national teams.

I think Toronto FC is also on the right track with their academy but they need to have someone in charge that has experience with this type of a mentality. I like Jason Bent as head coach of the senior academy team but I pick Grootscholten to run my player development every time!