TORONTO FC (3) – COLUMBUS CREW SC (3)
Toronto FC Report
BarnBurner Sports Writer
Saturday, June 2, 2018
TORONTO FC (3) – COLUMBUS CREW SC (3) POST-MATCH SUMMARY
TFC – Víctor Vázquez 17’ (PK)
TFC – Tosaint Ricketts 38’ (Víctor Vázquez, Sebastian Giovinco)
TFC – Sebastian Giovinco 57’
CCSC – Gyasi Zardes 67’ (Federico Higuaín)
CCSC – Alex Crognale 81’
CCSC – Federico Higuaín 90’ (PK)
CCSC – Artur 2’ (caution)
TFC – Jonathan Osorio 8’ (caution)
TFC – Jason Hernandez 21’ (caution)
CCSC – Josh Williams 56’ (caution)
TFC – Alex Bono 86’ (caution)
TFC – Liam Fraser 90’ + 2’ (caution)
TFC – Tosaint Ricketts 90’ + 3’ (caution)
Toronto FC: 3-7-2 11 pts.
Columbus Crew SC: 7-3-5 26 pts.
TORONTO FC – Alex Bono; Auro Jr., Jason Hernandez, Michael Bradley ©, Gregory Van der Wiel; Liam Fraser, Jonathan Osorio (Tosaint Ricketts 22’), Ryan Telfer (Nick Hagglund 67’), Jay Chapman (Marco Delgado 58’); Víctor Vázquez, Sebastian Giovinco
Substitutes Not Used: Clint Irwin, Nicolas Hasler, Mariano Miño, Ayo Akinola
COLUMBUS CREW SC – Jon Kempin; Harrison Afful, Josh Williams, Lalas Abubakar (Alex Crognale 63’), Milton Valenzuela; Ricardo Clark, Artur, Niko Hansen (Eduardo Sosa 63’), Federico Higuaín, Mike Grella (Luis Argudo 63’); Gyasi Zardes
Substitutes Not Used: Logan Ketterer, Héctor Jiménez, Mohammed Abu, Adam Jahn
On Toronto FC “breaking down” late in the match
Well, two things. [Crew SC] get desperate and start pushing a lot of numbers high, go to a 3-4-3 [formation], pressing, and committing everything to getting back into the game, as they should. For me, we [Toronto FC] do not adjust our mindset when that happens. When that happens, we have got to play forward, we have got to try to get behind [the Crew SC defense], and we have got to try to shift the game into the opponent’s half of the field. For some reason, we kept trying to play through this massive amount of pressure and kept putting ourselves in problems. Really, all three [Crew SC] goals came the same way. We, as a group, have to understand, because it is not the first game, that we have to respect the game and what the game is telling us and giving us, and go win the game today. We didn’t. We tried to stick with what got us there, but the game changed completely, and we needed to shift out of that mindset into a different mindset of just winning the game, no matter what it looked like, and just be effective in a different way, but we didn’t do that. We didn’t adapt when we needed to adapt.
On looking like the Toronto FC of 2017 in the first half
The difference between today and a year ago is that we win this game a year ago. We find a way to dig down and get the result, but today we didn’t, and that’s the mindset and the grind and the things that we have to shift that we have within us but need to bring out again. We have got to shift our mindset from trying to make the game look beautiful and realizing it just needs to be effective. That’s where we have to see things out better because this isn’t the first two points we’ve lost this year in similar fashion.
On Jonathan Osorio’s injury status
It’s a contusion in the knee, I think. I don’t have a further answer, but he played for a while and it was just a bruise as much as anything.
On Victor Vazquez taking the penalty kick in the 17th minute
It’s a decision the players make in the course of the game. They’re big boys and they determine who feels it, and obviously Victor [Vazquez] stepped up and finished it.
On how Toronto FC played out of the back line
I mean, it’s a makeshift back line, that’s what we’ve been dealing with for a little while now. For the first 60-70 minutes, I thought it was pretty solid from the group. Columbus [Crew SC] does a lot of different things and moves a lot of different guys into different areas, and we did a nice job of managing things, but when it came to be a little bit more of desperation time is when you see that we missed our normal shape and lineup to see the game out. We had a lot of guys doing different things and that’s not the ideal situation.
On Michael Bradley’s performance down the stretch
We were up 3-0 partly because of Michael [Bradley], so we win together, and we lose together. It is not any one person’s fault. We as a team have to adjust our mindset and shift our mentality to do whatever it takes to win the game. Period.
On Toronto FC’s start to this season
It is a tough start [to the season] because we are trying to get healthy and trying to get results along the way. Coming into this stadium against a team that has done really well this season and is well coached and is a good team, you have got to see things out from the first minute to the last minute. But again, I think we had an incredible start our season with the Champion’s League, we’ve shown we know how to win games, it’s not like we forgot, it’s a matter of making the right decision in the moment and taking as many points as we can. We are getting healthier, we are getting closer, and hopefully soon we will be able to shift into something that looks like guys in their normal positions and build a little bit of rhythm. But tonight we gave away two points, no question.
LIAM FRASER – MIDFIELDER, TORONTO FC
On if he [Liam Fraser] can you take some positives from the first 45 minutes
Yeah, for sure. Again, it is a 90-minute game so we have to look at it as a whole and take the positives out of it that we can and build up from that.
On how the game changed in the last 20 minutes
We didn’t get the ball up the park and we were trying to play out of our own half. We lost the ball a few times and we were putting pressure onto ourselves and I think that was everybody’s fault….in those last 20 minutes…. I think in the first half we played well and we deserved the goals and the chances we had, but again, it is a game of two halves and we failed to produce on the defense side in the last 20 minutes.
On if this is more than just a tough start to the season
Yeah, it is football right? Like I said we will get back to the training ground and focus for next week against Philadelphia [Union].
JASON HERNANDEZ – DEFENDER, TORONTO FC
On moving forward from tonight’s match
Yeah I think when you look at the positives, I think for the majority of the game we got what we wanted out of it. Scoring three goals on the road says a lot about the kind of performance we were putting in. On the flip side of that I think that we understand that we let ourselves down in a few different ways. We’re coming to a point in the season where every point is going to matter coming up real soon. Hopefully with the hard lessons that we have gotten through so far we will take those and be able to use them as an advantage for us for the second half.
On Toronto FC’s recent run of form
It is very difficult, especially for a team like us, champions, and had a lot of success last year. In a lot of ways, this is character development, were kind of getting under the fire a little bit. I think you learn a lot about each other, a lot about yourself when adversity comes. Obviously were dealing with adversity as of late, but I have full confidence in the guys in this room, and the guys who are not in this room. Once we get firing on all cylinders I feel really, really good about our chances. That was a tough one tonight, but we’re not gong to dwell on it too long, we will learn from our mistakes and play better next time