74’ — In comes Jay Chapman. He’ll replace Eriq Zavaleta as TFC adopt a more attacking formation.
73’ Toronto FC 1-2 Sporting KC — Aaaaand he slots it again. Brutal.
71’ — Here we go again y’all. Referee points to the spot AGAIN after another extended VAR check. Honestly, that’s probably more a penalty than the first one (which wasn’t, at all), but still a tough one.
58’ — Terrence Boyd’s night is done. Jordan Hamilton gets to see out the rest of this game, hopefully he can offer more.
HT — Well, TFC did well to get back into it before halftime. Big second half coming up as the Reds badly need this win.
43’ Toronto FC 1-1 Sporting KC — ON THE BOARD! Nick DeLeon scores it, finishing a fantastic ground cross by Justin Morrow, which was in turn preceded by an unbelievable through ball by Alejandro Pozuelo. Feels good.
34’ — TFC come insanely close again. A good cross comes in from a Pozuelo free kick, and Liam Fraser’s leaping header is only just pushed aside by a diving Tim Melia.
25’ Toronto FC 0-1 Sporting KC — Well, Gutierrez scores it. TFC are (rightfully) livid.
Here’s the call:
24’ — Umm... SKC are awarded a penalty. Very much debatable on several fronts.
11’ — Not a bad effort. Richie Laryea does well in the box to knock it back to the top and Pozuelo does some magic to get through two defenders. The cross from Morrow is a decent one, but Laryea’s header misses the mark.
TFC also came very close to scoring on the ensuing corner, but Melia made a good save point-blank on Eriq Zavaleta’s header. Good job by Zavs getting to the ball, though.
8’ — We’re eight minutes in and TFC have just had their first touch in the attacking half.
1’ — Heere we go! Ale Pozuelo kicks off for TFC, who head south for the first half.
Also, this happened?
Also, Telfer has been recalled from his loan at York9 FC. #canPL— John Molinaro (@JohnMolinaro) June 7, 2019
Terrence Boyd gets the start again. Jay Chapman remains on the bench.
A very shorthanded side for SKC tonight. Could be interesting.
Update 5:30 p.m.: Welp, looks like SKC will be even more shorthanded than we thought. As WTR reader Eddie Sasha helpfully pointed out in the comments below, SKC may not have anybody away at the Gold Cup, but they do have people away at Euro qualification matches. Botond Barath, Krisztian Nemeth (both Hungary), Johnny Russell (Scotland) and, ugh, Nico Hasler (Liechtenstein) are away.
Those are some very important players; SKC may now struggle to find goals without Nemeth or Russell in the lineup.
Last time we saw them (if you were still awake), they were nicking a stoppage-time equalizing goal in Vancouver so that it wasn’t quite a complete waste of time staying up for that late-night fixture.
The Reds finally had some good news this week, as they announced the signing of Omar Gonzalez, but he won’t get in the lineup until July. In fact, it’s going to be another under-strength squad for Greg Vanney’s side today, with Michael Bradley, Jozy Altidore, Jonathan Osorio, and Ashtone Morgan all away on CONCACAF Gold Cup duty. Plus, Chris Mavinga and Auro are reportedly both out with injury as well.
So, we come to this matchup with Sporting Kansas City. TFC could desperately use a few moments of magic tonight, in what could otherwise be a dull one against a fairly defensive opponent.
SKC sit tenth in the Western Conference with just three wins and 15 points. They’re not quite as strong defensively as they’ve been in years past, but they’re still a tough nut to crack, generally. In fact, they’ve probably been playing a fair bit below their capability.
Unfortunately, Sporting KC are dealing with quite a few injuries to players that would normally play key roles for them, including Roger Espinoza and Rodney Wallace. Still, there are a few names to look out for.
Their attacking duo of Johnny Russell and Krisztian Nemeth can do damage; Russell has seven goals and four assists already this year (although he’s apparently questionable for Friday with an injury).
We could also see a familiar face returning to BMO Field, after Nico Hasler signed with SKC in April. He’s started five of the ten games SKC have played since he arrived there, so he could be in the mix to play against his former club.
TFC could certainly use a big performance from Alejandro Pozuelo tonight, since their other attacking options may be quite limited. Alternatively, some well-deserved minutes for someone like Jay Chapman could go a long way.
Stick around after the game, by the way; win or lose, BMO Field will hopefully remain packed for the Raptors game viewing party.
Team news: injuries, suspensions & international duty
Toronto FC: Auro and Chris Mavinga are both listed as out on the MLS website. Jonathan Osorio and Ashtone Morgan (and Noble Okello) are away with the Canadian men’s national team, and both Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore (and Omar Gonzalez) are with the USMNT.
Sporting KC: No Gold Cup participants for SKC, but they’ve got some injuries. Listed as ‘out’ by MLS are forwards Erik Hurtado and Gerso Fernandes, midfielder Roger Espinoza, and defenders Jaylin Lindsey and Rodney Wallace, all of whom are out long-term. Johnny Russell is listed as questionable with a quad injury as well.
How to watch
Match date/time: Friday, June 7, 7:00 p.m. ET
TV channel: TSN 2 (Canada), Fox Sports Midwest
Live stream: TSN GO, ESPN+
Radio: TSN 1050