Toronto FC vs. New England Revolution
5:00 PM Eastern
BMO Field Toronto, ON
The Headliner: Stopping the red hot Revolution
There was a time when Toronto FC, the then fourth place team in MLS's Eastern Conference, had a nice point buffer on the New England Revolution in fifth.
That is no longer, with a loss to the Seattle Sounders this past weekend, Toronto FC were leapfrogged by New England in the standings.
The Revs have been one of the league's hottest teams as of late, going from being on the bubble as a playoff team to the relatively safe ground they currently inhabit.
All of this has come courtesy of a four game winning streak, one of which came against Toronto on August 1. In fact the Revolution haven't lost since July 11. Toronto have yet to beat them so far this season in three meetings.
Today's match will be an integral battle for a home playoff berth, as neither team will have a better chance of moving up/ solidifying their spot in the standings than today.
Toronto FC are currently 3 points behind New England in the standings, but have one game in hand.
Key to the match: winning the wings
The main goal threat on the New England Revolution is Charlie Davies, who plays at centre forward. However, the main way the team generates chances is on the wings.
Toronto FC have had difficulty with teams who have good width to their game. This is especially true of those who have pace. New England possesses both of these qualities.
Thankfully, Toronto FC will have a first choice back line in place when they take on New England in this match. Damien Perquis and Ahmed Kantari has both returned from injury, which will push Josh Williams out to his natural position of fullback. Following the birth of his child, which kept him out last week, Justin Morrow is back in the lineup as well.
Toronto FC: Konopka, Williams, Perquis, Kantari, Morrow, Delgado, Osorio, Bradley, Findley, Giovinco, Altidore
Subs: Bendik, Hagglund, Mannella, Chapman, Cheyrou, Gomez, Moore
As aforementioned, Toronto FC will have a first choice backline for tonight's match. However, they had better hope it stays healthy for the full ninety, as beside Nick Hagglund there are no other defenders on the bench. This might hint at Greg Vanney going to three at the back again late in the game should Toronto be behind.
Toronto will play four in the midfield, with Marky Delgado and Robbie Findley playing out wide. Findley has been in strong form as of late, and this is his second straight start as a result. In the middle Toronto will rely on Michael Bradley and Jonathan Osorio to challenge Jermaine Jones and Lee Nguyen.
Up front, after a week in which it looked unlikely that he would play, Sebastian Giovinco will start. Alongside him will be fellow designated player Jozy Altidore, who is returning from a successful tour of duty with the American national team.