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Toronto FC to open 2018 season at home before return to the Big O

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It’s going to be a chilly start to the year.

MLS: Eastern Conference Championship-Toronto FC at Montreal Impact Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

Toronto FC endured something of a slow start to their record-breaking 2017 season, winning only one of their first six games.

This year, they will hope - and need - to hit the ground running quicker. After a two-legged tie against the Colorado Rapids in the CONCACAF Champions League round of 16, the Reds will take on the Columbus Crew to open the MLS season on March 3.

It is the first time TFC have ever played their league opener at BMO Field. Toronto usually head on the road due to Canada’s cold weather in March, but the club appears confident that can be dealt with this year and the home end of the Champions League tie at the end of February will also be held outdoors.

Two weeks after the match against Columbus, Toronto will also be in attendance for the Montreal Impact’s home bow.

That game will be held at the Olympic Stadium, marking the first matchup between the two rivals at the 61,000-capacity venue since the first leg of their thrilling Eastern Conference final in 2016.

Toronto will not play on the weekend of March 11 and 12. Their full schedule will be released at a later date.

TFC will start their preseason, as has become customary, in Los Angeles before returning to Toronto for a spell. Instead of their usual trip to Orlando that follows that, though, they will instead go to Mexico this year and face local opponents to prepare for potential ties with Liga MX sides in the Champions League.

They could find themselves up against Tigres, arguably the best side in Mexico at the moment, as early as the quarter-finals.

Toronto FC 2018 schedule

Date Opponent Time (ET) Competition Venue
Date Opponent Time (ET) Competition Venue
Feb 20 Colorado Rapids 10 p.m. Champions League Dick’s Sporting Goods Park
Feb 27 Colorado Rapids 8 p.m. Champions League BMO Field
Mar 3 Columbus Crew 1 p.m. MLS BMO Field
Mar 6 - 8 Quarter-final* TBC Champions League BMO Field
Mar 13 - 15 Quarter-final* TBC Champions League TBC
Mar 17 Montreal Impact 3 p.m. MLS Olympic Stadium
Apr 3 - 5 Semi-final* TBC Champions League TBC
Apr 10 - 12 Semi-final* TBC Champions League TBC
Apr 17 - 19 Final* TBC Champions League TBC
Apr 24 - 26 Final* TBC Champions League TBC

*If Toronto qualify.