Philadelphia Union at Toronto FC: Match Night Commentary

Philadelphia Union at Toronto FC: Match Night Commentary

MLS- Philadelphia Union

Philadelphia Union at Toronto FC: Match Night Commentary

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Good evening folks. Tonight marks the home opener for Toronto FC, which looks to secure its first points of the season when the Canadians take on the Philadelphia Union at BMO Field (7pm, ESPN2).

Philly comes in off an emotional 3-2 victory in its own home opener, beating D.C. United. The Union will look to ride the momentum, as will Sebastien LeToux, who will be trying to build on the hat-trick he scored last week.

Toronto FC is a work in progress, with a defense in disarray and an attack still looking for a rhythm. The club has added a pair of defenders in Adrian Cann and Maksim Usanov.

Look for a physical match tonight as TFC fights for its first points of the season. Tonight also marks the first match at BMO Field since natural grass was installed. That should make for a different style of game than TFC fans have been used to seeing at home.

I will be providing commentary throughout the evening on the match, so please feel free to share your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below.

Enjoy the action (Commentary after the jump):

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FINAL– Philadelphia will leave Canada feeling like it let one get away. The Union played some quality soccer early on, but a goalkeeping blunder and silly red card doomed Philly to lose to a team it was probably better than in the first half.

Credit to Toronto, which scratched and clawed and fought. Preki's a coach who can get a team to fight for him and they did that tonight.

That's all for me. Thanks for following along. Feel free to share your thoughts on tonight's match in the comments section below.

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FINAL– Toronto FC 2, Philadelphia 1. TFC came in to make this a rough match and they battled for 90 minutes. Danny Califf's red card made things easier, but in the end it was Dwayne DeRosario propelling his team to victory.

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93rd minute– Toronto passing the ball well now. Where was this for 92 minutes?

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93rd minute– Final minute

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91st minute– Wow, great pass from White to spring Barrett on a breakaway. Luckily for the world, Barrett laid it off to DeRosario, who winds up missing it by association.

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91st minute– Nice job by Gargan to suck it up with the hamstring injury.

Three minutes of stoppage time.

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90th minute– Whew, we almost had the world explode if Barrett had gotten to that ball on a breakaway.

Toronto FC corner.

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89th minute– LeToux is down with a thigh injury.

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87th minute– Nice shot of Danny Dichio and Jim Brennan. Both players could still play for Toronto.

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86th minute– Not sure how people are questioning the penalty. White got to the ball before Seitz.

Five minutes to go. Can Toronto hold on?

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85th minute– Philly showing some life now as Fred and LeToux work to test Toronto.

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83rd minute– Philly will struggle to find an equalizer now without Torres and a man down.

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82nd minute- GOAL DEROSARIO!!!. Toronto FC 2, Philadelphia 1.

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81st minute– PENALTY!!!!! And it's Seitz with a foul on White. Told you White would make the difference here. Nice ball from Barret.

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78th minute– GARGAN WIDE!!! What a chance on a header, but it's JUST wide. Great chance.

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77th minute– Philly has definitely lost its spark since Torres came out. This game is Toronto's to win, but they need to do better with the ball.

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75th minute– TFC corner.

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72nd minute– It's Jacobson.

How bad is Hscanovics? Can't somebody talk Jim Brennan into coming out of retirement? Gabe Gala would be a better option.

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71st minute– Amobi Okugo is coming in. Will it be for Jacobson or Miglioranzi?

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69th minute– Gargan is back on. How long will he last? At this point I have a feeling Preki told him he better limp around if he can't run.

DeRosario WIDE!!! Nice throw-in by Gargan, DeRo tries a bicycle kick but sends it wide.

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68th minute– Gargan has come off. I had a feeling this game would end up 10v10, didn't think it would be like this.

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66th minute– Dan Gargan has injured his left hamstring and Toronto has already used all three subs. Preki may have overdone it with his subs too early.

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65th minute– Some nice air time on ESPN2 for the president of the Red Patch Boys (or is it U-Sectors). Either way, nice shot of him (and no, he wasn't the one with the funny hat).

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64th minute– No comments on the grass tonight but it does look like it's still playing slow. It's still pretty new and should get better with time. It still beats the fake stuff.

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62nd minute– Yes, the world would explode.

White with a nice turn on Thomas, goes down, but no penalty is called. Thomas looked like he had White's arm on that one.

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61st minute– What would happen if Barrett got a breakaway on Seitz?

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61st minute– Jacob Peterson has come on for Sanyang.

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60th minute– Sanyang took an elbow from Barrett and has come off with a cut to the head. It's 10v10 right now.

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58th minute– Sing it if you know it, "SCORE in a BRO-THEL"

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57th minute– Shavar Thomas with a foul on White, drawing a yellow card.

If Toronto is going to score a winner tonight, I'd say it will be White who scores it.

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56th minute– Shavar Thomas is coming in for Roger Torres. Philly looks ready to hold on to this lead. Actually, they had to make that sub now that White and Barrett are in the match.

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54th minute– Barrett goes WIDE with a header. Yes, Barrett missed sitters will be a second-half drinking game.

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53rd minute– SAVE SEITZ. TFC corner.

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52nd Minute– Here is Toronto's lineup now:

————–Barrett————White—————

DeRosario———-DeGuzman————–Gargan

—————-Sanyang—–LaBrocca—————-

Hscanovics———–Cann——–Attakora——-

————————-Frei—————————

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50th Minute– As expected, Toronto inserted forward O'Brian White for Martin Saric at halftime. That should help. White's a solid forward. Also, Chad Barrett is in for Usmanov.

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49th Minute– SAVE FREI, stops a LeToux header. Solid hands.

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48th Minute– Philly earns a corner after starting with the early possession.

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46th Minute– We're back. 

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HALFTIME– I will say this about Philly, if Califf could rein in the silly cards, Seitz could cut down the blunders and Peter Nowak could add a top winger, the Union could be a challenger for a playoff spot. They're still missing some pieces though.

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HALFTIME– Here are some thoughts on both teams:

For Philadelphia- Califf's red card was dumb, the Union has moved the ball around well, Torres is just a speclal playmaker, Harvey and Arrieta look very good at fullback and LeToux looks like he will find a goal.

For Toronto- Adrian Cann looks like a major upgrade from Nick Garcia, Hscanovics looks like a liability, DeGuzman needs to get more involved, Usanov looked decent until he fell asleep on Philly's goal and DeRosario needs some help up top, meaning Preki needs to insert a forward.

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HALFTIME– And in case you forgot, that Torres assist was a DRINK for everybody.

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HALFTIME– Toronto FC 1, Philadelphia 1. A great passing sequence for Philly earns them the equalizer. Toronto still has the man advantage though and it will be up to Preki to make sure Toronto can capitalize.

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46th Minute– Every time Seitz goes for a ball I feel like I'm watching the really drunk guy trying to play beer pong. Maybe it's just me.

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46th Minute– Torres has been a real revelation for the Union. He's pushing KC's Ryan Smith for MLS Newcomer of the Year honors early on.

How will Toronto respond?

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45th Minute- GOAL UNION!!! And it's Jordan Harvey with the finish off a BEAUTIFUL pass from Roger Torres. Great pass from the Colombian. We are tied.

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44th Minute– The game has opened up a bit since TFC went up a man. It should become even more wide open when Toronto gets its inevitable red card.

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43rd Minute– DeRosario just took a shot from 40 yards away just to keep Seitz awake. People need to realize that Seitz just doesn't have that many professional games under his belt. It definitely shows.

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42nd Minute– Toronto looking much more confident now. Being a goal and man up helps.

Liking what I'm seeing from Adrian Cann. Odds of Nick Garcia getting his starting job back: 25-1.

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39th Minute– You wonder how many times Seitz has to pull an Almunia before he gets benched for Brad Knighton.

SAVE FREI!!! Great stop on an Orozco flick header.

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37th Minute– I would like to apologize to Chris Seitz for jinxing him in the 23rd minute.

Yellow card to Miglioranzi. We knew it would be a physical, card-filled game. Getting what we expected.

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36th Minute- GOAL TORONTO FC!!!! ANd yes, it's DeRosario with a free kick that Seitz spills into his own net. Wow, Terrible play by Seitz. TFC 1, Union 0.

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35th Minute– That's a red card folks. You can't lift your arm and direct an elbow at an opponent, regardless of how hard it connects. Silly play by Califf.

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34th MinuteRED CARD TO DANNY CALIFF. I know, not totally shocking, but a major blow for the Union.

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33rd Minute– Philly continues to knock it around and even when Toronto intercepts, they can't keep the ball.

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30th Minute– Here's a drinking game. Anytime someone from Philadelphia goes to ground (other than Alejandro Moreno) you can drink.

Arrieta with a great ball into the area, but LeToux can't get to it.

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29th Minute– LeToux has a go from distance, but can't put it on net.

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27th Minute– Torres creates a chance, DRINK.

Philly's piling the pressure on. Can they put a shot on frame?

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26th Minute– Usanov gets a yellow card for a harsh foul on Moreno. No dive that time, that was a bad tackle.

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25th Minute– DeGuzman wins a challenge, but he's on the ground with studs up again. He does that a little too easily sometimes.

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23rd Minute– Where will the goals come from for Toronto? Good question. At this point a Seitz blunder seems like the best bet.

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21st Minute– Toronto can't afford to keep picking up cheap fouls.

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20th Minute– No rhythm to the game right now. Toronto FC keeping some good pressure on, but losing the possession battle.

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17th Minute– Hscanovics with a terrible challenge that earns him a yellow card. Could have been a red card if a different ref was in charge.

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15th Minute– Philly controlling possession early, but Toronto is staying well-organized.

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12th Minute– Nice intervention by Usanov. Toronto's back-line is looking settled, the midfield is doing its part.

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11th Minute– TFC's corner is headed away and leads to a Philly counter. Toronto holds it off.

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10th Minute– Can't help but wonder if Preki got the "Win You Must" banner TFC fans displayed before the match.

DeRosario looks frisky tonight, earns a corner.

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8th Minute– Philly is moving the ball around well. You see the confidence that comes from winning a game.

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6th Minute– I would include Alejandro Moreno dives, but I don't want anybody dying.

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5th Minute– Drinking games tonight: Dan Califf fouls, chances created by Roger Torres, defensive blunders by TFC and sideline shots Preki.

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4th Minute– You know what we haven't done in a while? Drinking games. This game seems like it might need some.

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3rd Minute– Some good energy from TFC early, but some shaky moments from Stefan Frei.

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1st Minute– We're underway. 

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PRE-GAME– Anybody else enjoy the irony of a TV analyst singing the praises of players they traded away back when they still had jobs in MLS? Just a thought.

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PRE-GAME– Man, that Toronto FC lineup looks scary. Not good scary. I'm glad I don't have money on this game, but yes, I'll stick with my pick. Why? Winning on the road isn't easy in MLS.

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PRE-GAME– I'm sure Alexi Lalas was speaking metaphorically about the U.S. national team taking Alejandro Moreno to the World Cup. He knows Moreno plays for Venezuela.

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PRE-GAME– No natural forwards or natural wingers for TFC. Maybe I should change my prediction? Actually, I'll bank on Preki squeezing a win out with this group. Actually, it's feeling more like a draw, but the home crowd counts for a big push, at least you would think.

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PRE-GAME– Here is Toronto FC's unique starting lineup:

———————DeRosario————————-

LaBrocca———-DeGuzman—————–Gargan-

—————-Saric———Sanyang——————

Hscanovics—-Cann——–Attakora——-Usanov

————————-Frei—————————

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PRE-GAME– Here is Philadelphia's starting lineup, which is the same lineup that beat D.C. United last week:

————-Moreno——-LeToux—————-

Fred——–Miglioranzi—-Jacobson——Torres

Harvey——Orozco———Califf———Arrieta

———————–Seitz————————–

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PRE-GAME– For those of you wondering how I see this game shaking out. I'll give the edge to Toronto FC at home? Why? As bad as the defense has been, the club will be turning to a new pair of centerbacks, which should help, and the push of a sold-out BMO Field should make the difference. We'll go with Toronto FC 1, Philadelphia 0, on a goal from Dwayne DeRosario.

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