That... was a lot to handle. Toronto FC complete an absolutely unthinkable comeback to finish the game with a point and a 4-4 result. Nick Hagglund of all people was the hero tonight as he scored a late brace to equalize the match not once, but twice.
Obviously a draw against D.C. United at home isn’t ideal, especially not that first half, but all in all that was an absolutely fantastic second-half performance from TFC. They reminded us all tonight what kind of damage they can do when they’re hungry for it.
Has your heart rate slowed down yet? Mine certainly hasn’t. I know it’s a draw, but frankly it feels like a win just because of how good the response to a terrible first half was.
92’ Toronto FC 4-4 D.C. United — HAGGS?!?!?!?! This is one hell of a game. Nick Hagglund with another fantastic header, this time more placed than smashed, after TFC send the ball across the box a couple times. Great work from Seba to keep it in play after a corner that stretched too far.
Turn Nick Hagglund's 6 upside down that's a 9 now. 4-4. Hagglund on a brace. pic.twitter.com/mJBK29AFXu— Mitchell Tierney (@mitchelltierney) June 14, 2018
90’ Toronto FC 3-4 D.C. United — You’ve got to be kidding. Just as the party was resuming, D.C. go back down the other end and score. Happened in the blink of an eye.
87’ Toronto FC 3-3 D.C. United — NICK HAGGLUND!!!!!! Just as he did in 2016 against Montreal, Haggs scores a banger of a header late in the match. TFC are now level, after being down 3-0 at halftime. Great ball into the box from Justin Morrows. That was definitely by design; Hagglund had been playing as a striker for the past few minutes because of his ability in the air.
3-0 leads are the most dangerous in soccer apparently. Great dummy from Oso, great cross and a solid finish from Hagglund. Wow. pic.twitter.com/niXi2IwuNb— Mitchell Tierney (@mitchelltierney) June 14, 2018
79’ — Jonathan Osorio came incredibly close after a fantastic piece of buildup play triggered by Giovinco. Oso stepped past Frederic Brillant, coming face-to-face with Ousted, but the angle was just a little too wide and he couldn’t get it up over the keeper. Nico Hasler‘s balls into the box have been excellent as well. TFC look hungry.
64’ Toronto FC 2-3 D.C. United — Well, don’t switch off quite yet. TFC woke up in a big way after Osorio’s goal, and they have something to show for it now. Giovinco takes a very impressive (if ambitious) shot from outside the box, which bounces off the post and lands perfectly for Victor Vazquez. The Spaniard rockets it into the goal to make it 3-2.
57’ — Justin Morrow comes in to replace Ryan Telfer, who just produced a great cross for a goal.
56’ Toronto FC 1-3 D.C. United — Well, TFC are on the board! As he always seems to this year, Jonathan Osorio finishes extremely well after a spot-on cross from Ryan Telfer. TFC race to get the ball back as Ousted kicks it away.
46’ — Tosaint Ricketts enters the game for Eriq Zavaleta.
HT — Far from ideal against the last-place team in the Eastern Conference. TFC are booed off the pitch after going down 3-0 in the first 45 minutes of this game.
45’ Toronto FC 0-3 D.C. United — Nightmare first half for TFC. Acosta dances through the penalty area with seemingly nobody able to pick the ball off him, and he lays it off to Darren Mattocks, who scores. 3-0 right before halftime.
42’ — Alex Bono comes up with a HUGE one-on-one save on Paul Arriola, who was scot-free ahead of all of TFC’s defenders. Could’ve been 3-0 right on the edge of halftime.
39’ — Auro picks up a yellow card for a clumsy tackle a few yards outside the penalty area, but it wasn’t the worst one to take.
17’ Toronto FC 0-2 D.C. United — Ugh. Once again against the run of play, D.C. strike quickly. Zoltan Stieber gets it on the run and springs the counter, sending in a perfect ball to the penalty spot. Paul Arriola finishes with a quality diving header to make it 2-0, just moments after a TFC penalty shout at the other end.
12’ Toronto FC 0-1 D.C. United — It happened again. D.C. United strike first as a couple TFC defenders get caught up and Luciano Acosta makes them pay. He runs into the box and centres for Yamil Asad, who finishes into the bottom right corner. The defending up to this point had been good, but all it takes is one mistake.
6’ — Nico Hasler gets in all alone for a second after a pass bounces off Christopher Durkin, but keeper David Ousted comes waaaay out of his net to stop the attack.
4’ — Close! The ball comes out to Ryan Telfer alone on the edge of the box, and he sends a good ball through traffic, but Victor Vazquez can’t quite direct it into the net.
1’ — We’re off!
Lineups are posted below! Eriq Zavaleta returns to Toronto FC’s backline, and Justin Morrow is on the bench in a reinforced starting XI for TFC. Check it out at the bottom of the page.
There's just one MLS game left to go on the eve of the 2018 World Cup, and it's between Toronto FC and D.C. United at BMO Field tonight. The Reds, fresh off their first away win of the season, will be focused on securing a second straight win for the first time all year.
DCU have struggled even more than TFC to start this year, as they flounder at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. They've won twice and scored just 15 goals.
It's not all bad, though. Striker Darren Mattocks has been in good form, with six goals on the year and four in his last five games. The backline has been surprisingly passable too; centre-backs Frederic Brillant and Steve Birnbaum have been steady in the middle of defence, each averaging 5.5 clearances per game.
TFC will hopefully see a continuation of their steady return to health. Eriq Zavaleta will likely be available, and even Justjn Morrow could be ready to play a part. Ager Aketxe, Nick Hagglund, and Nico Hasler all played in Philadelphia and looked fit as well.
Last year, TFC beat D.C. 2-0 at home, and drew 1-1 with them on the road despite DCU’s Lloyd Sam taking a red card in the 44th minute. This match would be the perfect opportunity to raise some fans’ spirits as we head into the break.
Team news: injuries & suspensions
Toronto FC: Jozy Altidore, Drew Moor, Chris Mavinga, and Ashtone Morgan are the confirmed players to miss out tonight. Justin Morrow remains questionable at least, but it sounds like Eriq Zavaleta is ready to go.
D.C. United: Defenders Taylor Kemp, Chris Odoi-Atsem, Nick DeLeon, and Kofi Opare will miss out, as will midfielders Russell Canouse and Ulises Segura.
How to watch
Match date/time: Wednesday, June 13, 8 p.m.
TV channel: TSN 1, 4, 5 (Canada), NewsChannel 8 (D.C.)
Live stream: TSN GO, ESPN+
Radio: TSN 1050 (Toronto)
Bench: Irwin, Hernandez, Morrow, Fraser, Mino, Aketxe, Ricketts