The Reds trailed at the break after a half they had controlled between both boxes without particularly threatening Luis Robles’ goal. Bradley Wright-Phillips opened the scoring with a brilliant overhead finish from after a Sacha Kljestan free-kick that was headed across the area, but the Red Bulls remained a long way off their fearsome best.
If not for that goal we may now be talking about another away-day masterclass from Toronto. Alex Bono was not severely tested otherwise and just as they did against the Columbus Crew and Minnesota United, Greg Vanney’s team threatened to blow their opponents away in the later stages.
As was the case in Columbus, Benoit Cheyrou was influential as a substitute and stooped to head in a Steven Beitashour cross that Chris Mavinga had flicked into his path to tie the game in the 70th minute.
Oh... this one brings back some memories. Cheyrou with the header, 1-1 pic.twitter.com/hwdkAFSNhQ— Waking the Red (@WakingtheRed) May 20, 2017
From there, chaos ensued. Tosaint Ricketts - again a huge threat in the final minutes having had little to no involvement prior - was fouled by Damien Perrinelle to give Jozy Altidore the chance to win the game from the penalty spot, but the American’s penalty was at a goalkeeper’s height and Robles made a good save.
Something... something... TFC and penalties. pic.twitter.com/7Hh77ykKMr— Mitchell Tierney (@mitchelltierney) May 20, 2017
Toronto were repeatedly troubling Red Bulls centre-back Aaron Long, and Ricketts then rushed on to a pass behind the 24-year-old only to see his effort on a bouncing ball hit the crossbar.
The Reds thought they had won it, though, when Ricketts was alert again to pounce on the rebound of a well-saved Cheyrou shot only for referee Robert Sibiga to spark widespread confusion by making a late, late call to wave the goal off for offside. It later emerged that Raheem Edwards had interfered with Robles’ read of Cheyrou’s initial shot from a position behind the defence.
I’m not going to even attempt to sum that one up in the usual three points, so we’ll have a full dissection later. Toronto now turn their attention to the Canadian Championship, making the short trip to face the Ottawa Fury in the first leg of their semi-final tie on Tuesday night.