clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Preview: Toronto FC looks to stretch unbeaten run to six against the Philadelphia Union

New, 9 comments

The Reds have recorded nine points from their last five league games.

Michael Bradley (4) seen during the MLS football match... Photo by Angel Marchini/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Having yet to lose since the sacking of Chris Armas, Javier Perez and Toronto FC will have their sights set on extending their unbeaten streak to six when they take on the Philadelphia Union at Subaru Park.

Two wins and three draws from their last five have propped TFC up to 10th in the Eastern Conference, with the Reds sitting just eight points behind CF Montreal in seventh.

Kickoff in Philadelphia is set for 7:30 pm EST and as always, fans will be able to watch TFC in MLS live on TSN.

The 1-1 draw with Nashville SC over the weekend marked Javier Perez’s fifth game as interim coach as well as the fifth consecutive game in which TFC recorded at least a point. Yet, there is still quite some catching up to do with regards to moving into the playoff spots, and that will continue against the Union, who currently sit fifth in the East.

Ever since their eight match unbeaten streak ended, Philadelphia has won just one of their last five games. In their last match, Jim Curtin’s side could only manage a draw at home against the Chicago Fire.

With just two points from their last three outings, the Union are at risk of potentially dropping out of the top seven if their poor run of form continues.

A win for Toronto on Wednesday will see them move seven points behind Philadelphia with a game in hand.

On the injury front for Toronto FC, Auro Jr., Alejandro Pozuelo, and Dom Dwyer are all questionable with lower body injuries. Tsubasa Endoh, who missed the Nashville draw, has been ruled out for the second match in a row due to a leg injury which he picked up during the 2-1 win over Chicago on July 24. Ayo Akinola remains a long term absentee with a torn ACL.

TFC has also had all of their Gold Cup participants return to Toronto following the tournament’s conclusion. Richie Laryea and Eriq Zavaleta both started against Nashville, while Jonathan Osorio came off the bench for the final 30 minutes. Kemar Lawrence, though, was not involved over the weekend and there are no new updates regarding his status for Wednesday.

In terms of goal scoring, both Toronto and Philadelphia have bagged 21 goals in MLS so far this season, but the Reds have conceded 16 more than their upcoming opponent.

Polish forward Kacper Przybylko is the Union’s top scorer in MLS with six goals. As for Toronto, Akinola and Osorio lead their side in scoring with three strikes each. Overall, a total of 15 different TFC players have found the net in the league this year, seven more than Philadelphia who have had just eight of their roster get on the scoresheet.

Wednesday’s game will be the 27th meeting in history between Toronto and Philadelphia. The Reds lead the way with 12 wins out of 26, while the Union has won four less. Six draws have also been played out between the two clubs.

TFC has won three of the last five matches, but suffered a heavy 5-0 defeat in their latest clash with Philadelphia back in October 2020.

In the history of this matchup, Sebastian Giovinco is the top scoring player with seven goals against the Union. Jozy Altidore is just behind his former teammate with five total strikes. For Philadelphia, Sergio Santos is their all-time top scorer against Toronto with four.

After this game, TFC will have officially played half of their 2021 MLS campaign, and with a playoff push seemingly on the horizon, Perez and co. will have nothing but victory on their minds for the remainder of the season.