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Recap: Bradley double boosts Toronto FC in Philly

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Just as we all expected.

MLS: Toronto FC at Philadelphia Union Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Today we laugh about Toronto FC, but far less derisively than we have recently. The Reds defeated the Philadelphia Union __ this afternoon at Talen Energy Stadium with an unbelievable brace from Michael Bradley.

Yes, you read that right. The captain scored his first goal in about two years just before halftime, smashing home a perfect ground cross from Auro.

Then, just about 15 minutes into the second half, he jumped on a loose ball in the box to put TFC two goals to the good. Laurent Ciman put a decent cross in there and Bradley showed better finishing than TFC have been used to.

Philly drew one back around the 70th minute, with Marco Fabian scoring a controversially-given penalty off of a Jonathan Osorio handball, and they pressed hard the rest of the game. In one moment they thought they’d equalized, when a ball trickled past Alex Bono, but Laurent Ciman was the hero as he cleared it off the line.

Nick DeLeon also scored his first as a Red right in the dying stages of the game, picking out the bottom corner from quite far out after a very sneaky steal. The Reds have shown some very good finishing today.

Of course, in classic TFC fashion, the Reds missed a penalty of their own in the first half, as Jonathan Osorio put a very weak effort low and to the right for Andre Blake to jump on.

Tempers boiled over a little in the second half, with crunching challenges from both sides and multiple appeals for red cards (and a whole lot of work for the VAR to do). Both Bradley and Osorio came out of the game with yellow cards (as did Fafa Picault and Sergio Santos), and Bradley came perilously close to earning a second, but he managed to get away with it. The last ten minutes or so of play were filled with fouls.

Overall, it wasn’t exactly vintage TFC, but the game was pretty much the best the Reds could’ve hoped for. They looked dominant at times, and they capitalized on some good chances, but the defence was a little makeshift at times and it wasn’t exactly Alex Bono’s best game. Still, not too much to complain about for TFC from this one. Laurent Ciman was certainly more comfortable in a back three, and Drew Moor’s stabilizing presence was a real breath of fresh air.

Thoughts?

Stats

Shots: PHI 17, TOR 8
Shots on target: PHI 4, TOR 5
Possession: PHI 62%, TOR 38%
Fouls: PHI 16, TOR 14

Man of the Match

Poll

Who was TFC’s man of the match?

This poll is closed

  • 88%
    Michael Bradley
    (398 votes)
  • 5%
    Chris Mavinga
    (26 votes)
  • 5%
    Nick DeLeon
    (24 votes)
  • 0%
    Justin Morrow
    (3 votes)
451 votes total Vote Now