Monday, April 27, 2009

Toronto Takes Season Series

Toronto FC won the season series with Kansas City yesterday, winning 1-0 at BMO Field to go with their 3-2 win in KC on the opening day of the season. KC played one of their better games of the season, holding possession and controlling the game, but could not get anything going in the offensive third of the field. After an early flurry by TFC, KC started to control the game and pick up corner after corner in the first half. Unfortunately for KC, Claudio Lopez's corners continue to lack as almost every single one went right into the first defender. The same happened on his free kicks as well, as he'd get by the wall, but the first defender after that would have the easy job of clearing the ball.

Wizards goalkeeper, Kevin Hartman came up with a huge save in the 34th minute, as Danny Dichio chested down a cross into the path of Amado Guevara who let loose a blast from outside the box that Hartman did well to punch clear. KC continued to pressure, but could not get any great chances. Their best chance came late in the half when Lopez played a ball over the top to Davy Arnaud who raced onto the ball. Arnaud's shot was saved by Stefan Frei, but the rebound went right into the middle of the box. Unfortunately no Wizards players had been following the play and the rebound was cleared.

TFC came out in the second half and started to control the game more, creating a few chances, as Hartman made a save on Chad Barrett and TFC had a goal called back as Pablo Vitti was called offside. In the 54th minute, TFC played a cross into the box that went over everyone to the back side. Marvell Wynne collected and played to Sam Cronin, who slotted to Dichio, who had come out of the goal after his first run. Dichio unmarked about 8 yards from goal slotted the ball to the far post past Hartman and gave TFC the lead.

KC started to push again after the goal, but really weren't able to create many good chances on goal. Finally the Wizards got a good look on goal in the 87th minute, as substitute, Herculez Gomez received the ball and dribbled past his defender in on goal, but Gomez's shot was right at Frei who did well to close down the angle. The chance seemed to give KC a push and they were able to look more dangerous late. The Wizards final good chance fell to Lopez, who hit a hard strike from the left side, unfortunately for KC, Frei got a finger tip to it and tipped the ball over the bar preserving the points for TFC.

Wizards Man of the Match - Michael Harrington - A hard pick this week as no one really stood out as having a really good game yesterday, but Harrington was dangerous coming down the right wing.

Player Ratings - Hartman 5, Watson 5, Conrad 5, Hohlbein 5, Besler 4, Harrington 6, Hirsig 5, Espinoza 5, Arnaud 4, Wolff 4, Lopez 4 Subs Gomez 5, Kraus 4, Thompson NR


Anonymous said...

That was a dreadful performance by Espinoza. Hirsig was soft in the middle and we really missed Jewsbury. Another solid performance by our forward keeping consistent with their no goal campaign... unless there is a penalty kick. Abe Thompson was non existent and I continue to wonder why he was even brought in this year.

On a good note:
we had good possession in the first half. Besler is developing into a good outside back and Watson though he got burned twice down the wing doesn't do so bad.

Its hard to stay positive.
Regarding our forwards, when does the transfer window close?

Anonymous said...

Espinoza always ended up with a horrible pass or kick, I like what he does other than the end result, he needs to make the easy pass and stop forcing things... Also, Harrington sent that cross to Arnaud when Davy should have scored, Harrington was our man of the match by quite a bit and needs to continue to be in the midfield, he is the best crosser we have. Jewsbury needs to be back pronto

Reepicheep said...

1. Lopez should never take a free kick of any kind ever again...corner, direct, indirect, none. Very questionable coaching to keep letting him squander opportunities. I don't get this.

2. Espinosa hasn't really ever done anything of note. I don't get why anyone would be high on the guy.

3. Other than 15 minutes in the Chicago game, Wolff has been utterly useless.

4. I don't agree that Hirsig was "soft" in the middle, but he couldn't get a solid strike on a ball to save his life yesterday.

Anonymous said...


1- Yea he is horrible, hitting a dead ball was the only thing Marinelli was good at but he was really good at that. Honestly Harrington might be the best choice, he seems to strike the most consistantly and seems to be able to control bend well.

2- I like Espinoza when he is on the other side of the ball, either the ball or the man is not getting past him. He puts himself in the rigth places as well, his decision making the final 3rd has just been horrible, espeically that last game.

3- Agreed, same basically goes for anyone who has played forward this year; whats worse is am I now looking forward to Cristman getting healthy (gulp)

Anonymous said...

Thompson was brought in to be a body and give us someone that can play back to goal and he's done ok at that when he's been on, he needs to be starting up top to give us a different look.

Why the gulp for waiting for Cristman to come back? He, like Thompson gives us a different look up top than two over the hill "speedsters"

Mike said...

Anon1: The transfer window is currently closed for MLS team's it'll open back up around July. They can still try to trade within MLS if they wanted to, but I doubt it. We currently have an open roster spot, at least until either Cristman or Kronberg comes off of IR. Then we'll have a full roster. When the other comes back we'll have to waive a senior roster player. When Myers comes back, one of our developmental players will need to be waived.

Anonymous said...

do you know when Myers is supposed to be back? And Cristman?

Mike said...

I'm not entirely sure when either is expected to be back, although I'd predict June or July. Myers is ahead of Cristman at this point. When I've seen Myers at practice the last few days he hasn't had the boot on his foot, while Cristman still does, so I'd expect Myers back first.

Anonymous said...

Anon (1) here,

Thanks for the answer on the transfer window..... maybe we can get Montero from Seatle...LOL that kid is good.

In the next press conference is there anyway you can voice some of the questions posted here, I believe some of them have some great insight.

Like, why is Lopez taking the freekicks and corners, 1 of 5 is ok.

and me Personally, would like to know what he sees in Kraus.

Mike said...

I can certainly try to ask those questions, but I doubt I'd get anything more than a "canned" answer from Onalfo. Not quite sure what I'd get in regards to the first question about Lopez taking the free kicks. But in regards to the Kraus question, he'll say something to the extent of: "he's a guy that works hard in practice every day and continues to improve. He proved himself in the reserve league and deserves his chance."

Basically that's what I'd expect to get. He said something similar about him at the preseason gathering and the press conference the week after he scored against the Rapids.