Sometimes it's the wins that should be the easiest that end up being the most difficult to get. That was absolutely not the case for Toronto FC, as they recorded their first win since August 9th. The match at BMO Field was a rout in the making from the outset, as a 3-0 Toronto FC victory flattered the visitors. The win inches Toronto back towards a winning record, and the playoffs, at 10-11-7 on the year.
Jackson opened the scoring with a deflection in the 23rd, and lasted a bit over 40 more minutes before being sent off. The man who set up his goal, Gilberto, finished the scoring off a very well worked corner kick straight out of the training ground. Luke Moore made good on one of his many chances to score the second. Joe Bendik had the clean sheet, likely one of the easiest he has had in his career.
A full breakdown of the victory and thoughts from the players and coach will be up momentarily. Until then, here's the post game quotes and there were actually a couple of highlights to choose from for once. But let's go with Jackson's, as we won't be seeing him for a little while, followed by the full highlights.
GREG VANNEY - HEAD COACH, TORONTO FC
Thoughts on today's game...
I thought we played well. I thought for the most part we were in control of the match on both sides of the ball. I thought we were purposeful in our possessions, sometimes a little too backwards, but I think we can still become a little bit more aggressive and forward thinking. We saw some possessions where I thought were very purposeful when we got multiple players an action. We've been talking about relationships and guys using spaces in playing off of each other. We had a few attacks, one where Luke (Moore) hit the crossbar, which was a great buildup. So there are some things that we've been working on that are starting to show on the field for me. Our defensive organization was pretty solid. I felt the only times we got ourselves into a little bit of trouble was when we were not as aggressive as I would like us to be in terms of our attacking aggression anyways, and in terms of getting forward and playing forward. Overall I'm very happy. The guys have worked hard the last couple of weeks. Obviously they were very close to picking up three points last match in Chicago and to get these three points I think we'll just continue to build confidence in this group and where we are going.
Is it nice to get scoring for multiple players...
Yes absolutely. To be fair, we scored two goals on corner kicks, both of which we set up this week in preparation of this match and both of them worked out. You like when you train for things during the course of the week and they come off from the training field to the match field, and for us they accounted for two goals. It's great to see different faces on the score sheet and to have a lot of guys involved in different ways so I am very pleased in the effort.
Thoughts on the red card issued to Jackson...
I think Jackson lost his cool. There was an initial challenge where he thought he was fouled and then he had then went back and take it into his own hands a little bit and then it turned into a little bit of a confrontation and he lost his cool. At this time of year it's a challenge, he knows that. We've already had a brief conversation with him. He knows that that is not a good moment for the team and so we'll have to deal with it. We will see what happens. We need all the players to manage their emotions because this is the critical time of the year and we need everybody. I thought he was outstanding in the match today and really, really made a difference in the game. It was maybe the best I've seen him all year. He looked like he was having a ton of fun and for him to switch like that and get emotionally caught up in the moment was unfortunate. We'll have to move forward and deal with it.
Did having Steven Caldwell contribute a lot to the team getting the clean sheet?
Definitely, he's got a great voice. Obviously he is a leader, he keeps us organized, he gets people around him into good positions early, he keeps everybody's concentration levels high, and he's experienced so he see's a lot of things before they happen and he helps put out situations before they even become situations and that is an invaluable thing. It was good for him to get through the 90 minutes. We were unsure but because the match went there wasn't a ton for him to do so he was able to see his way through it. It was good for him to get that under his belt. I know he's been excited this week to get out there, and to get a win and have such a big role in it, I think he should be excited moving forward.
GILBERTO - FORWARD, TORONTO FC
How big was that to get a win?
It's a big win for us, we really needed that victory. So now we have to continue working hard because next week we have another big game.
Talk about the game, how much you guys controlled it, moved the ball forward with purpose and didn't give them much...
We did some good work this week. The coach prepared us very well tactically, so all of our plays were spot on and we were moving the ball well today. We worked hard and got the victory.
Tell us about that goal celebration...
I'm good friends with Lucas and Bruno from the Raptors, so that was kind of a tribute to them and kind of to give them some support as their season is coming up. So that was a bit of a push coming into the season.
STEVEN CALDWELL - DEFENDER, TORONTO FC
It's nice to play 90 minutes and obviously to get a clean sheet and three points is crucially important. It's just the start of it, just a few games to go and I'm looking forward to a huge game this Saturday.
How do you feel physically?
I feel good, I was a little bit leggy the last 15 minutes but my injury felt absolutely fantastic. I thoroughly enjoyed being back out there and hopefully another good week ahead of me and I'll be even better next Saturday.
Overall happy with the way you guys played today?
Yeah of course. We were first to the ball, we moved it well, we spread it well and of course we defended pretty well when we needed to. The goals helped and obviously they came at very important times in the football match. I thought Jackson was absolutely outstanding today and I was disappointed that he went off. It created a bit more space which personally wasn't great. But I'm just pleased we didn't give up anything silly or lost a sloppy goal which would have taken the shine off. But we kept a clean sheet and got a massive three points.
MICHAEL BRADLEY - MIDFIELDER, TORONTO FC
Obviously pleased with the result...
I thought there were a lot of positives. You get to this point in the season and you want to feel like you are hitting your stride. The play is improving and I think that at this point both the results and the performances have to go hand in hand. We don't have any more room or ability to compromise one for the other. Because it's so tight in the conference, every point is going to be so precious. We really feel like now in this last stretch we are just trying to hit our stride and the three points were very important today. The spirit obviously reflects that and we will use the week to push ourselves a bit more and be ready for a very important game next week.
WILMER CABRERA - HEAD COACH, CHIVAS USA
What are your thoughts on the game today?
We tried to prepare for the game, where we never got caught in the back on long balls. We tried to keep the game in front of us, but with the first shot for them on goal we got a deflection and it went in. We had one great chance to tie the game, but we couldn't finish that and then in set pieces, it sad because we practice on that a lot and we got punished twice. One to finish the first half and one at the beginning of the 2nd half.
You will have Cubo Torres back against Seattle. What is the expectation or the hope of having him back?
He has to score 75% of the goals for us. So, yes we miss him. We've missed him for four games. Hopefully he has a good mentality to come back against Seattle.
DAN KENNEDY - GOALKEEPER, CHIVAS USA
What are your thoughts on the game and the teams performance?
Jackson gave us a bit of trouble up the middle there and scored. He did well with it, a deflection goal. Then were just looking to get to halftime at 1 - nil and unfortunately we gave up that second goal on a set piece right before halftime. It made the battle a little more difficult. A little more of an uphill climb going into the 2nd half. They went pretty conservative defensively after that and we gave them another set piece goal and that was game set match there.
Do you think there are any positives moving forward based on the performance today or how you can continue staying motivated since there is no playoffs to look forward to?
This is what we do. None of us should be short of motivation. Being positive is kind of what it takes. Unfortunately we are going through a tough stretch here. The only ones who are going to get us out of this is ourselves.
ERIC AVILA - MIDFIELDER, CHIVAS USA
Eric tell us a little bit about the game and about being back here in Toronto?
It's always nice being back here. I obviously wanted to come back with a good result. The team...we were trying to figure it out in the first half. The mistakes on the set pieces and the goal in the last minute kind of cost us a bit to get going in the 2nd half.
Any positives moving forward based on the performance from today?
The only thing we got to do is just keep going. We always have to be positive in the locker room. That's just the only way to get out of it. I've been in situations like this before and the only thing to do is to be together and being positive
TFC- Jackson (Gilberto, Osorio) 23'
TFC- Moore (Hagglund, Bradley)45'+2
TFC- Gilberto 53'
CHV- Sturgis (Caution) 38'
CHV- Reo-Coker (Red) 66'
TFC- Jackson (Red) 66'
TFC- Lovitz (Caution) 75'
Toronto FC: 10-11-7 (37 points)
Chivas USA: 6-17-6 (24 points)
Toronto FC- Bendik, Caldwell, Hagglund, Bloom, Morrow, Jackson, Bradley, Osorio (Creavalle 68'), Lovitz (De Rosario 76'), Moore (Oduro 73'), Gilberto
Unused Subs: Konopka, Morgan, Henry, Oduro, Bekker
Chivas USA- Kennedy, Toia, Burling, Zavaleta, Lochhead, Avila (Barrera 56'), Reo-Coker, Sturgis, Minda, Chavez (Dunn 82'), Borja (Finley 64')
Unused Substitutes: Spangenberg, Hurtado, Pelletieri, Jean-Baptiste