80’ Toronto FC 5-2 Vancouver Whitecaps (7-4 agg.) — Tosaint Ricketts bringing the CanCon! Tos heads one in as Michael Bradley sends in a nice curled effort on a long free kick from the left side. Were you getting nervous?
77’ Toronto FC 4-2 Vancouver Whitecaps (6-4 agg.) — Brek Shea adds another one for Vancouver. He pops it over the line as it pinballs around Clint Irwin’s six-yard box.
75’ — Oh right, TFC made some substitutions. Ryan Telfer came on for Giovinco, and before that Nick Hagglund came on for Mavinga.
62’ Toronto FC 4-1 Vancouver Whitecaps (6-3 agg.) — Kei Kamara adds one for the visitors, but it’s got to be a consolation prize at this point. Highlight of the sequence was Ashtone Morgan throwing the ball away over the crossbar, and Kamara kissing the ball kid on the cheek for retrieving it.
53’ Toronto FC 4-0 Vancouver Whitecaps (6-2 agg.) — Stop, stop, they’re already dead! Jozy Altidore scores a carbon copy of his goal in the 2016 MLS Eastern Conference Final, heading one in on the near post off a perfect corner delivery from Sebastian Giovinco. Done and dusted, the Reds are heading back to CONCACAF! With the hat trick, I’d say Jozy has redeemed himself for his red card on the weekend.
49’ Toronto FC 3-0 Vancouver Whitecaps (5-2 agg.) — Jozy again! A perfect low cross near the byline from Giovinco finds its way to Altidore, who just taps it past Marinovic. What a night for the Reds.
Jozy. Seba. Then Seba to Jozy, tonight is shaping up real nicely. pic.twitter.com/oCyXZqRakD— Waking the Red (@WakingtheRed) August 16, 2018
46’ — Time to keep rolling. Second half starts now.
HT: things are good.
44’ Toronto FC 2-0 Vancouver Whitecaps (4-2 agg.) — The big guns are out today! The world must be ending or something because Sebastian Giovinco just scored a goal with his freakin’ head. Perfect cross from Jonathan Osorio, and Seba makes himself the sole leading goalscorer in the history of the Canadian Championship with six total.
Sebastian Giovinco with the.... header? Anyways things are going well, thanks for asking. 2-0 pic.twitter.com/mY8kdqgFtn— Waking the Red (@WakingtheRed) August 16, 2018
39’ Toronto FC 1-0 Vancouver Whitecaps (3-2 agg.) — JOZY ALTIDORE! The big man himself puts the Reds on the board before halftime. Marky Delgado plays a cheeky backheel in the box right into Jozy’s path, and Altidore finishes perfectly along the ground from a difficult angle. He runs right over the ad boards to celebrate with the fans in section 112.
36’ — The Reds come close as Jay Chapman’s shot bounces off Stefan Marinovic and over him, but Doneil Henry clears it off the goal line before getting cleaned out by a teammate. Poor guy.
34’ — TFC have definitely had the majority of possession and chances, but nothing has been particularly dangerous so far. Still, there’s a feeling something’s coming.
18’ — Russell Teibert just ran straight through Sebastian Giovinco in the TFC half, clashing knees with him. Seba went down in some considerable discomfort, but he’s going to be okay to carry on. Nervous scenes for a moment, though.
1’ — Lineup changes be damned, let’s do this thing! TFC attack the south end first, implying they lost the coin toss. They’ll kick off.
Uh oh. Toronto FC have just announced a late change; Victor Vazquez has had to withdraw, with Marky Delgado taking his place. That’s a big opportunity for Jay Chapman, who will likely be moving to the top of the midfield diamond.
Toronto FC’s lineup features three Canadians, with an extra two on the bench.
Bench: Bono, Hagglund, van der Wiel, Delgado, Endoh, Telfer, Ricketts
Vancouver Whitecaps: Marinovic, Nerwinski, Henry, Waston, de Jong, Techera, Teibert, Ghazal, Davies, Reyna, Kamara
Bench: Rowe, Franklin, Juarez, Blondell, Mezquida, Hurtado, Shea
To a lot of fans, tonight is Toronto FC’s season. With the MLS playoffs slipping away, the vocal majority of supporters expect the Reds to throw everything they have at the Vancouver Whitecaps in tonight’s Canadian Championship final.
It’s been said more than enough times, so I don’t need to repeat in detail, but the Voyageurs Cup is the club’s highest priority at the moment, no question.
Fortunately, TFC are in a pretty good (not ideal) position to defend their trophy. The aggregate score is 2-2, meaning the Reds lead on away goals (thanks mostly to Doneil Henry’s unfortunate — but hilarious — own goal last Wednesday). With a win or draw (of 1-1 or 0-0), the Cup is Toronto’s for a third straight time.
TFC will most likely be fielding an almost full-strength lineup tonight, especially with Chris Mavinga and Jozy Altidore suspended for the weekend’s game.
It looks like the Reds’ opponents will be a little shorthanded tonight, too. Vancouver midfielder Felipe is suspended, of course, after being sent off last week for his high tackle on Marky Delgado. Even more worrisome for the visitors, though, is the fact that it looks like Alphonso Davies may not be able to participate. That’ll make things much easier on TFC’s defence, but it’ll surely disappoint a lot of fans coming to watch the young Canadian phenom.
This is the game TFC have needed for months now: everything on the line, do-or-die. It’s what they became used to last fall and spring. Maybe this is the jolt they need.
Team news: injuries & suspensions
Toronto FC: It looks like Auro is the only major injury at the moment. Victor Vazquez should be available for selection despite tweaking his shoulder on Sunday.
Vancouver Whitecaps: Jordon Mutch (foot) and Jose Aja (quad) are out. Alphonso Davies is questionable, as is Doneil Henry (who apparently broke his wrist after the game last Wednesday), and Brett Levis. The ‘Caps may be a little strapped for Canadian content.
Felipe is, of course, suspended.
How to watch
Match date/time: Wednesday, August 15, 7:30 p.m.
TV channel: TSN 1/4
Live stream: TSN GO