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Toronto FC vs. New York Red Bulls: TV channel, live stream, team news & lineups

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Let’s wrap it up.

Julian Dodaro (@dodaroj)

The game

Toronto FC can clinch the Supporters’ Shield with a win. It’s as simple as that.

The Reds will not have to worry about what New York City FC or Atlanta United do as long as they beat the New York Red Bulls at BMO Field on Saturday night. That will allow them to go into another derby against the Montreal Impact and a road match in Atlanta with only the MLS regular-season points record and pre-playoff momentum left to play for.

The Red Bulls are doing their best to throw away their own postseason spot, but the Impact keep refusing to take it off them. New York have not won in the league since August 12, drawing five of seven MLS matches and also losing the U.S. Open Cup final against Sporting Kansas City.

Kick-off: 7 p.m. ET

Venue: BMO Field, Toronto

The question

The Red Bulls played D.C. United on Wednesday night and had another midweek game - that U.S. Open Cup final - the week before that.

Toronto, on the other hand, have enjoyed a full week off and have rested Jozy Altidore, Victor Vazquez, Chris Mavinga and Eriq Zavaleta at various points over the past few games. Will the Reds play with any noticeable extra freshness as a result of that contrast?

The matchup

In terms of personnel, Nicolas Hasler (if he starts) against Kemar Lawrence should be a good one but I’m more interested in Jesse Marsch’s overall tactical setup.

They play a system that looks reasonable enough when it is a 3-4-2-1 but can morph into a highly unusual 3-3-3-1. Against D.C. United, the Red Bulls had a back three that included two natural full-backs - like Toronto in New England, funnily enough - protected only by Felipe, with aggressive wing-backs and a band of three attacking midfielders further ahead. They conceded three goals.

TFC are as capable of passing through a high press as any team in the league, which would leave New York at risk of being exposed at the back to an even greater extent. As a result, I expect we’ll see a more orthodox back three, Lawrence and Michael Murillo returned to their normal wing-back roles and Tyler Adams (who played wing-back last weekend) giving Felipe some help in the middle.

But maybe they roll the dice and we get a really interesting tactical battle.

The opposition view

Add Marsch to the list of coaches very complimentary about TFC’s season:

“It’s a team that’s very good on the ball. They dictate the game by how they possess the ball and spread the field. That obviously will challenge us in big ways.

“They have very good attacking players, they’re very sound defensively, very good on set pieces. It’s really an incredibly well-rounded team. It’s hard to find weaknesses, and in order to get a result we’re going to have to be at our absolute best.”

Pre-match reading

Toronto FC have history in sight in most important game of the season

Predicting Toronto FC’s lineup against the New York Red Bulls

Who could Toronto FC lose in the LAFC expansion draft?

TV channel & live stream

TV: TSN 2 (Canada), MSG (New York/New Jersey)

Stream: TSN Go (English), MSG Go (New York/New Jersey), MLS Live (out of market)

Radio: TSN 1050 (Toronto), Red Bulls Radio (New York/New Jersey)

Team news

Sebastian Giovinco is Toronto’s only definite absentee. Nick Hagglund and Benoit Cheyrou have returned to training after lengthy lay-offs but whether or not they are ready to play a part in this game remains to be seen.

Gideon Baah, Aurelien Collin and Mike Grella are on the injury list for the Red Bulls.

Projected lineups

Toronto: Bono; Zavaleta, Moor, Mavinga; Hasler, Delgado, Bradley, Vazquez, Morrow; Ricketts, Altidore.

New York: Robles; Escobar, Long, Perrinelle; Murillo, Felipe, Adams, Lawrence; Davis, Wright-Phillips, Kljestan.