Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Toronto rediscovers the will to win
by Ridge Mahoney, July 12th, 2012 2:24AM
Subscribe to Soccer America Confidential

MOST READ
TAGS:  mls, toronto fc

MOST COMMENTED

A month of turmoil and player upheaval was briefly set aside as Toronto scored deep in stoppage time to down Canadian rival Vancouver, 3-2, in a spectacular match at BMO Field.

On the same day Toronto FC announced it had parted ways with one of its players arrested last month, another of those players helped propel it to an amazing victory.

Luis Silva scored TFC’s first goal in a see-saw battle against Vancouver at BMO Field that went deep into stoppage time before Terry Dunfield headed homeTorsten Fringscorner kick to give TFC a dramatic 3-2 victory.Silva also set up a first-half chance for Ryan Johnson with a great ball over the top and went the full 90-plus minutes in a game that featured all five goals in the second half, including the last two in stoppage time.

Along with Miguel Acevaland Nick Soolsma, Silva was arrested in the early morning hours of June 17 for failing disperse after police officers responded to reports of an altercation outside of Club Escobar in Houston. All three players were arrested for public intoxication after ignoring the officers’ instructions to leave.

The incident occurred a week and half after Paul Marinerreplaced Aron Winter as head coach in early June. The fate of all three players was at the time left up in the air, and now their future paths are taking shape: Silva has apparently returned to good standing, Aceval was on the bench against Vancouver though he didn’t play, and earlier Wednesday the team announced Soolsma’s contract had been terminated by mutual consent.

Soolsma, 24, joined TFC last year and after he impressed initially, his stock dropped. He scored three goals and recorded seven assists in 32 games. This season, he’d started only three of his nine appearances and registered two assists. Soolsma shared a Dutch heritage with Winter and now he’s followed him out the door.

He isn’t the only attacking player to leave after an encouraging debut season in MLS. Joao Plata’s exciting dribbles and daring runs thrilled the BMO faithful last year, but his lack of playing time prompted public statements that he wanted to return to Ecuador. Wednesday came confirmation that he is being loaned to LDU Quito for the next six months, with an addendum that he could return to TFC next season.

As a 19-year old during his rookie season in 2011, Plata scored three goals and added five assists in league play, and also contributed important goals in TFC’s surprising run in the Concacaf Champions League. Like Soolsma, MLS 2012 didn’t follow suit; he scored zero goals in 10 appearances.

TFC under Mariner is still a troubled team, yet it fought adversity throughout the match against Vancouver. In a scoreless first half in which TFC seldom held the upper hand,Johnson squandered a pair of breakaways, hitting keeper –- and former San Jose teammate – Joe Cannon with one shot and banging the other off the goalpost.

Silva steered in a centering pass from left back Ashtone Morgan, who signed a long-term contract a few days ago, to tie the game, 1-1, and Frings rocketed home a shot three minutes later to make it 2-1. But TFC couldn’t handle Vancouver rookie forward Darren Maddocks, whose second goal in stoppage time deflated a buoyant BMO crowd that had been primed to celebrate just the team’s third victory after a disappointing 3-0 loss to Philadelphia last weekend.

That set the stage for the heroics of Dunfield, a Vancouver native who came home in 2010 after playing a decade in England to play in the second division. The 'Caps traded him to TFC just about a year ago and he marked the occasion a few days early by heading a Frings corner kick with just seconds left in stoppage time.

The victory was just the second in eight games for TFC under Mariner but it has also managed four ties. TFC lost nine straight under Winter to open the season. The Dutchman did get one victory before being dismissed, so if nothing else, at least under Mariner TFC is harder to beat.

Whether the players had quit under Winter or were just too poorly prepared doesn’t matter much now. They’ve rediscovered the will to win.



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Confidential
If the song remains the same, how can it be rewritten?    
Thumped by Argentina in a Copa America Centenario semifinal, the U.S. will nonetheless take positives from ...
Stepping on toes? That's not the solution to improving U.S. soccer    
Do you wonder what kind of advice Jurgen Klinsmann was giving his players during their loss ...
USA reaps benefits of South American opposition    
Reaching a Copa America Centenario semifinal against Argentina to be played on Tuesday is being hailed ...
USA has reason to celebrate but suspensions sure take edge off big win    
First, the good news from Thursday night in Seattle. The USA's 2-1 victory over Ecuador, which ...
Centenario group phase serves up plenty of spectacle, drama, and controversy    
When big teams like Brazil and Uruguay fell prone to lapses, other nations took advantage to ...
Guzan seizes chance for No. 1 shirt    
Seven straight games including all three at the Centenario have featured Brad Guzan in goal; he ...
Berliner John Brooks takes charge of USA's defense    
Just three years ago, John Brooks, born and raised in Berlin but the son of a ...
USA's 'musts' for Paraguay game if it isn't 'must-win'    
The Copa America Centenario results to date are mirror images of what occurred in March, when ...
May Clint Dempsey long play for the USA    
Hard to believe, but as recently as January there was speculation about whether Clint Dempsey would ...
How Klinsmann can fix his midfield    
I'd suggest for Jurgen Klinsmann, after opening the Copa Centenario with a 2-0 loss to Colombia, ...
>> Soccer America Confidential Archives