Live Match Thread
FT: Toronto FC 2-2 New York City FC
90+1—CHANCE! Wow. Great play off a free kick by TFC, as Yeferson Soteldo intelligently turns at the top of the box before releasing Kemar Lawrence down the left-hand side, and he cuts it back to Nick DeLeon, but DeLeon’s shot is saved from in tight! What a chance to grab the winner.
71’—This second half has been mostly Toronto FC, but NYCFC are starting to regain some life here, as both teams exchange some chances. Is there still a winner left in this match?
55’—GOOOAAAAAAAAALLLL! TIE GAME!!!! Achara gets put in behind and the youngster calmly squares it to a wide open Alejandro Pozuelo, and the reigning MVP taps home. Can you believe it?
48’—GOOOOOAAAALLL! Toronto FC 1-2 New York City FC: RICHIE LARYEA! He gets put through so cleverly by Alejandro Pozuelo and Laryea makes no mistake. TFC have responded after those two massive substitutions.
46’—Two changes from Toronto FC to begin the second half as Ralph Priso and Achara check into the game for Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley. Yes, you read that correctly.
HT: Toronto FC 0-2 NYCFC
45’—Three minutes of added time as Supporters are still finding a way to cheer this TFC team on. I’m surprised they’re not boo’d off the field.
39’—It’s getting rowdy. Both Richie Laryea and Yeferson Soteldo have picked up unnecessary yellow cards, even though the one on Soteldo was a clear bit of embellishment via Maxime Chanot of NYCFC, who went down holding his face despite Soteldo clearly hitting his arm.
Temperature boiling over from a few Toronto FC players as their frustration is beginning to show. TFC fans at BMO Field chanting 'This is our House' — still getting behind the club.— Michael Singh (@MichaelSingh94) August 8, 2021
30’—That’s looked like a penalty. Referee doesn’t give anything on what looked like a hand ball in the box, but after seeing the replay, he may have got this one right. Looked like it hit off Callens’ face.
28’—CHANCE! Yeferson Soteldo gets in behind, stumbles on his touch, and goes for the electrifying chip, but Sean Johnson stands tall.
21’—GOAL! New York City 2-0 Toronto FC: A poor back pass from Eriq Zavaleta after a poor couple of touches from Kemar Lawrence eventually ends up in the back of the net as Ismael Tajouri-Shradi slots home through the legs of Alex Bono. He was allowed to walk in on his own, perhaps Bradley could’ve closed down instead of taking the pass.
12’—GOAL! New York City 1-0 Toronto FC: TFC broken down with a few give-and-go’s at the top of their box as Santiago Rodriguez finishes a tidy play. The Reds concede early ... once again.
10’—A new setup for the Reds in this one. Looks like a 4-1-2-3 with Bradley as the holding mid, Jozy Altidore on the right wing, and Pozuelo as the false 9.
7’—Jozy Altidore certainly looks a bit more energized than Wednesday night. He wins a header down to Pozuelo, who has a go from about 25 yards out, but his shot clips a streaking Soteldo. Pretty shaky start from TFC aside from that one chance.
1’—Ohhhh when the Reds...
8:06—We’re seconds away from kickoff! The stadium has begun to fill in. It feels like a classic Saturday night on the lakeshore. Come on you Reds!
7:54 pm ET—BMO Field looks...sparse tonight. Some positive news though: first time this season that all three Toronto FC designated players are in the Starting XI. It should provide the team with a much needed spark.
7:30 pm ET—We are back at BMO Field as the Reds are home to host a New York City FC side that’s in form. Toronto FC are looking to bounce back after a dreadful midweek performance against the Philadelphia Union, and as Michael Bradley pointed out after that one: the team can’t afford many more performances like Wednesday night’s. The last time these two sides met at BMO Field was the last match before the pandemic shut things down, so perhaps we can say we’ve sort of come full circle. Let’s hope for another memorable outing like that game was all the way back on March 7, 2020. Come on you Reds!
Here’s how Toronto FC will shape up against New York City FC:
Toronto FC Starting XI:— Waking the Red (@WakingtheRed) August 7, 2021
Bono; Laryea, Zavaleta, Gonzalez, Lawrence; Bradley, Delgado, Osorio, Soteldo, Pozuelo; Altidore pic.twitter.com/qJCdbpEvGd
And for the visitors..
Preview via Aasim Hashim
TORONTO, Ont. - The Reds return home from their trip to Philadelphia and will now host Eastern Conference rivals New York City FC at BMO Field looking to start a new streak after having their five game unbeaten run come to an end on Wednesday night. Kick-off is scheduled for 8 PM EST and as always, can be watched on TSN4.
Wednesday night’s loss did not come as a surprise to head coach Javier Perez. Speaking to the media after the match, Perez spoke about the challenges that come with a team re-learning good habits.
“This is a big red flag that we were expecting at some point,” said Perez. “You make some steps forward and at one point you make one step backward: it was tonight. We came flat in the first half. The team was sending some signs that it was going to be the case, but it was one of these games that you just have to go through and the only positive thing is it was an exercise to stay in the game.”
Over their five match unbeaten streak, the Reds had done well to not allow the game to get out of hand in the first-half. That wasn’t the case as Philadelphia scored three first half goals to seal the game. The Reds have now conceded a league high 16 goals in the first half, including nine in the first 15 minutes of matches.
Since returning home to BMO Field, the Reds have struggled offensively scoring three times since returning to BMO Field. While Toronto has looked much more solid defensively, it will be a worry for interim head coach Perez. While Yeferson Soteldo and Jozy Altidore, along with the Gold Cup returnees will surely help, the absence of Alejandro Pozuelo is very noticeable in the Reds offence.
Pozuelo’s availability for Saturday still remains unclear. After missing out on the last two matches, the Spaniard is still listed as questionable heading into the weekend. Pozuelo’s inclusion would undoubtedly be a big boost for the offence. Striker Dom Dwyer and full-back Auro Jr. are also listed as questionable, and may not participate in this weekend’s matchup. Tsubasa Endoh has been ruled out, and as announced by the club earlier on Friday, Ayo Akinola underwent surgery and will be out the remainder of the season.
New York City come into Toronto riding a four game unbeaten streak in which the Blues have scored 10 goals, which has included 4-1 and 5-0 wins over the Columbus Crew and the Orlando City respectively. New York, who have scored 30 goals, currently sit only behind New England (33) in goals scored in the Eastern Conference.
While the Blues sport a strong record at Yankee Stadium securing six wins in nine home matches, the road has not been so kind for NYCFC, who have managed to pick up two wins in seven matches away from New York, totalling eight of a possible 21 points on the road this season. Given their record, It’s no coincidence then that New York has managed to score eight goals in seven matches on the road, compared to 22 goals in nine matches at Yankee Stadium.
Leading the way for the Blues in the goal scoring department is winger Jesús Medina, who leads his club with seven goals. While Medina is the leading goal scorer, City have multiple goal threats in their lineup. Forwards Valentín Castellanos and Ismael Tajouri-Shradi have also each contributed six goals this campaign to help New York become one of the best goal scoring sides in the league this season.
In their most recent outing, the Blues visited the Chicago Fire where it ended in a scoreless draw. NYCFC’s 0-0 draw with the Fire ended the Blues’ 25 game regular season streak with at least a goal. The Blues did play the final 17 minutes down a man as midfielder Keaton Parks picked up his second yellow and was dismissed from the match. With the red card, Parks, who has featured in 16 games this season, will be suspended.
Along with Parks, the Blues will also be without Heber and Talles Magno for this weekend’s match as both have been ruled out through injury. Heber has not featured so far this season, and Magno has featured in four matches, so the Blues Head Coach Ronny Deila will have most of his squad available for selection in Toronto.
This will be the second matchup between NYCFC and TFC this season. The clubs previously met in May at Yankee Stadium and played to a 1-1 draw. On that afternoon, NYCFC winger Medina put the Blues ahead through a set piece, before Jacob Shaffelburg scored his first of the season to equalize.
Over the 19 times that two clubs have matched up, it has been closely contested. The Reds hold a slight advantage with seven wins, but the Blues have picked up six wins of their own, and the two clubs have played to a draw on six other occasions, in regular season and MLS Cup Playoff action.
Wednesday’s loss, the first under Perez, will have been a setback for the Reds - but Saturday night will be an opportunity for the Reds to show they can bounce back against their rivals.
Kick-off: 8 PM EST
Opponent: New York City FC
Location: BMO Field, Toronto