Columbus Crew vs. Toronto FC
7:30 PM Eastern
Mapfre Stadium Columbus, Ohio
The Headliner: Maving Moves Up The Table
Last week Toronto FC cemented a playoff position by not letting the Philadelphia Union pass them in the standings and making a strong statement at home. Now on the road they have a chance to take it to the next level: get a club record fifth away victory in a season.
A win would also tie them on points with rival and top Eastern Conference side Columbus Crew on points and put them back in Trillium Cup contention.
While against Philadelphia they proved that they were a playoff team in the Eastern Conference, this match gives them a chance to prove that they are among the East's elite teams. Points per game wise Toronto are a top three team, but you have to beat the best to be the best.
This will also be a good chance for redemption for TFC, as a loss to Columbus at Mapfre Stadium in their second game of the year kicked off a four game losing streak that was their worst stage of the season.
Key to the Match: Damien Perquis vs. Kei Kamara
Last time Toronto FC played the Columbus Crew, the lasting image was one of Columbus forward Kei Kamara wearing a hardhat after scoring a goal. Kamara has had a fantastic season this year, and kicked it off with a goal against Toronto.
So far this year Kamara has a league leading 14 goals, two more than Toronto's Sebastian Giovinco, and 5 assists in 21 games played.
Tasked with stopping him will be Damien Perquis, who didn't have a very good outing despite the victory against the Philadelphia Union. Perquis has been up and down this season but will need to be at his best in order to stop a strong Columbus attack.
Beside Kamara, the Crew also have Ethan Finlay who leads the league will 11 assists, and has also added 6 goals so far this season. They are also complimented by Frederico Higuain who has 5 goals and 5 assists and is always dangerous against Toronto.
In goal Joe Bendik continues to be Toronto's starter after finally getting back into the lineup last week. The backline is once again without Ashtone Morgan, who was injured in Toronto's midweek friendly against Sunderland. That means Jackson will be back into the lineup as Toronto tries a very experimental 3-5-3 lineup. Daniel Lovitz will be the other winger why Cheyrou Warner and Delgado will mind the middle of the park. As always, Sebastian Giovinco and Jozy Altidore will play up top.