|NY RED BULLS
||4 – 1
Cooper 27', 88'
||SHOTS ON GOAL||5
"Wake me up before you go-go, don't leave me hanging on like a yo-yo!
Wake me up before you go-go, I don't want to miss it when you hit that high.
Wake me up before you go-go, 'cause I'm not planning on going solo!
Wake me up before you go-go, Take me dancing tonight.
I wanna hit that high..."
- "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go", Wham!
They hung on, and on, and on. They took the lead, even -- but in the end the result is just the same as the others. A 6th minute Ryan Johnson strike was buried under a Kenny Cooper double, and a pair from
Handball Thierry Henry and Markus Holgersson, giving TFC its 19th loss of the season, one less than the current record of 20 -- another ignominious record to stare down the barrel of.
Could it have been different? Certainly -- the start was bright, Quincy Amarikwa had already hit the post, and Johnson's goal was a thing of beauty. It was part of an overall bright effort at the beginning, and something that for the first 83 minutes of the game, was paramount to TFC: effort. Even after Holgersson and Cooper scored to reverse the scoreline, the team simply refused to give in, a trait that has been rarely seen lately.
However, that still translated to a whole lot of nothing. Set piece defending was shoddy, which gave Holgersson the tying goal in the 13th minute. Darren O'Dea and the defensive corps were in and out throughout, with Richard Eckersley the guiltiest party on Cooper's second goal that effectively ended Toronto's stubborn resistance. Aaron Maund once again had a forgettable game, Ashtone Morgan with an off-night, while the goalkeeping simply added the cherry on top of the sundae, Freddy Hall turning in another suspect performance capped off by Henry's coup de grace deep into stoppage time.
Andrew Wiedeman was once again completely unconvincing in the front, while Luis Silva provided a spark of inspiration that vanished once he was withdrawn. Eric Avila's entry was far too late to have any tangible effect, once again proving that whatever the reason that he is being locked onto the bench is clearly something that doesn't have to do with on-field issues -- and all while they had the gall to put up the challenge, they did not have the means to do so: the set pieces play was soft, and didn't achieve much when it needed to.
Another question that must be asked is why a sub-par keeper such as Freddy Hall continues to get a start; the final goal by Henry should prove beyond the shadow of doubt that he is a third rate 'keeper that likely will not survive in the CSL, and is occupying an international slot that could be better used on a better player. Some may argue he is out of his league, and that is where Paul Mariner will once again have to answer to his decisions.
At the end of the day, It's all well and great to be able to stay with a stronger opponent for a majority of the game, but when there are chances they must be buried -- and when there are none they must be made. The scoreline may be a little unflattering and may not show some of the effort, but one can't say it wasn't a deserved result. TFC tried for the first time in many games, but again they came up short and got snowed under. If you want to show some heart, don't keep hanging like a yo-yo -- either turn the intent into action, or just stay home instead.
* * *
WTR'S GOLDEN TROPHIES/MOONCAKE TINS TO THE HEAD
* A golden trophy to...Eric Avila. For having to put up with Mariner's machinations.
* A mooncake tin to the head for...Richard Eckersley. Directly guilty of the third goal by Cooper.
* A mooncake tin to the head for...Darren O'Dea. Off night in command of the defense.
* A mooncake tin to the head for...Theirry Henry. Why not?
* A special ONE WAY TRIP OUT OF TOWN FOR...Freddy Hall. He skates on very thin ice.