It's been a rough year for Canadian soccer and for TFC -- bad season, crashing out of World Cup qualification, the list goes on and on. But amidst the haze, there were moments where we genuinely wanted to break out the bubbly to celebrate those moments. And today in honour of the festive day that is Christmas, Team WTR has selected four moments worth celebrating.
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Kristin - TFC vs. CD Aguila, August 1st: I could go with the women winning the bronze or the men’s match against Panama in September (both were fantastic moments that I’ll not soon forget) and it was a close one, but for me; if only for the sheer joy and fun in person was TFC’s win over CD Aguila in their CCL match.
You were expecting me to say the match at the Skydome, weren’t you? As much as that was a very enjoyable spectacle, the August match sticks with me. It was a rare moment of joy in a depressing and difficult season for our Reds. Every supporter (what few there were) that came out for that match - including the El Salvadorans - were right into the spirit of the match, were supporting their team every minute and damn it, we had fun that night.
John - TFC vs. LA Galaxy, March 7th: It's been a long time since we've seen an almost full stadium, and that evening of March 7th really was a sight for sore eyes like mine. 50,000-plus packing the Rogers Centre (or Skydome), all waving and screaming -- it felt like the first few years again, those years when we were naive and all gung-ho. Granted, we didn't see anything close to the magnitude of that since, but for that one shining moment, I thought we were back in those good ole days. Luis Silva scoring his first professional goal, was icing on the cake.
Duncan - Canada vs. France, August 9th: I'll go with the obvious one, the one genuinely exciting, feel good, important moment that didn't get tarnished by later disappointment, and that'd be the Canadian women winning a bronze medal against France. It wasn't a great game by any means, but Diana Matheson's calm finish and Kaylyn Kyle's stop drop and roll routine to get out of the way will remain as iconic moments for Canadian fans.
After an Olympics that started slow, and saw improvement in each game and an epic game of their lives against the US, it seemed like it was going to be a bitter story, an underdog cruelly robbed by a team that was too proud to get beaten and a ref that gave them all the help they needed. Surely that game was the apex, and the bronze medal match an anti climax. It almost was, Canada were not even close to being in that game, but somehow France just couldn't score, and then the ball popped up in front of Matheson right at the death and the rest is history. Awesome.
Dave - TFC vs. LA Galaxy, March 14th: There's probably no better moment that when Toronto wrapped up the win over the LA Galaxy that saw them head into the CCL semi-finals. It was a moment filled with joy from getting the win and that little bit of extra satisfaction that came from seeing the team stick it to everyone that had given them no chance of moving on from that tie. The only moment that has come close to feeling that good for me as a TFC fan was the win in Dallas last year that set it all up.
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What were your champagne moments of the year? Let us know in the poll and comments below!
Yesterday, we looked at the goals of the year. Tomorrow, we will be looking at the moments of the year that made us reach for the antacids. You may be surprised, or not, as to what makes the list!