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Thursday, April 15, 2010

The South Stand Report : TFC v Philadelphia or... Guess which one is the expansion team and win a prize!

I probably could've done something to the stars, but oh well...

Oh Toronto in the spring. Arguably spring started mid-March when we had a week of +20 C temperatures. And our spring lasts 6 weeks around here. Which means it'll be almost summer by the time Seattle gets here. Pre-gaming at the Foggy Dew with gorgeous women everywhere I look in this city a black velvet in hand, I await with bated breath for this evening's festivities when I am privy to hurl insults with my season friends at 11 men running around on a newly minted grass pitch. But this season is different.

The insults will be hurled at TFC.
No I'm not a hater for the sake of hating. Trust me. I applaud when The Chad plays well as much as I deride him when he misses the Food Building. For those of you doing the math, that's a massive amount of derision.

So since TFC joined the league, we've seen two expansion teams. Both got results a helluva lot quicker than we did.
As a season's ticket holder, are you happy with this fact? I'm not. 15% ticket increase with a 38% quality decrease. No smiles here.

Philly is fresh off a smashing of wooden spoon rivals DC United where Le Toux bagged a hat trick. When is our turn to get Le Toux? Next year perhaps...
The Red Fail played 45 mins of passible footie only to have it undo itself in spectacular end-of-season, fate-in-hands collapse a la versus Red Bulls.

But at least the weather is nice/got new grass/the home opener is here.
Are you really still smiling? *sigh* Game time. Please look coherent reds. Please...

Predictions came in a 2-1, 2-1 and 1-0 in favour of Philadelphia and some sod picked 3-0 Toronto.
Toronto started out with (and if this turns out bad, this is the first time I'm doing a starting XI) the following :

Cann - Attakora - Usanov - Hscanovics

LaBrocca - Sanyang - Saric - Gargan

de Guzman

De Rosario

3' - LaBrocca goes to turf which prompts our own Harry Wetnap with the early Quote of the Match
"Doesn't LaBrocca look like Irwin R. Shyster?"

Naw, looks more like Mike Rotundo to me.

6 - Usanov rounds the length of the pitch and has no winger to pass to. Know that, strategically, this is intentional.

9 - DeRo receives a cross with a defender hanging on his back and SOMEHOW this is offside. Not only is Toronto more head-scratchingly bad, but the discount refs are in full force.

11 - Le Toux runs so flakily but is deceptively lethal in front of goal (ask DC). In other news, our right midfielder Dan Gargan appears to be afraid to run in parallel with the field on a counter.

We interrupt this match report to bring you this wonderful conspiracy:
You never see Andrea Lombardo and Maksim Usanov in the room at the same time. Strange...
16 - YELLOW - Hscanovics for a lack of consonants at the beginning of his name. Sorry, I had to look up the name three times before typing it. Still booked.

22 - Shenanigans have been officially declared by someone a few rows behind us. How we'll get to the bottom of this, we'll never Mo... I mean Mo Johnston... I mean KNOW...

25 - YELLOW - Usanov for a loosely called late challenge

34 - RED - Danny Califf gets a shower for a vicious looking elbow to the head of Julian de Guzman. Part of me thinks this is the old "Gretzky Rule" all over again, but it's well deserved whoever he mailed.

36 - GOAL - The ensuing free kick from 23 yds out is taken by DeRo which gets through the wall and is ultimately bobbled by Philly keeper Seitz and into the onion bag. After the crap first half we've been subjected to, I'm surprised this happened at all.

38 - Another yellow card to Philly. The free kick was glancingly deflected by DeRo just wide of the net.

40 - Philly free kick from 30 yds out and the ball ended up on the foot of Orozco with a great touch, only to be palmed away by a lunging Frei. Great stop.

45 - GOAL - On the counter, Philly loop a ball across the box where Tony Stahl one touch to stop and one touch to slot the ball in. Quality goal. TFC hasn't scored anything that pretty in a while.

HALF-TIME : deja-f'ing-vu. Seriously, I saw this "style" of play in TFC from year 1. I hope it isn't another season of this bullsh*t footie.

SUB : The Chad and White are on, Saric and Usanov are off. DeRo and deGuz are back in their normal positions.

50 - The Chad crossed a sweet ball to White who just fires wide of the net. I've never been more happier to see Chad Barrett. No, seriously.

53 - The Chad swings in another nice ball to LaBrocca who misses. Failed clearing attempt ends up at deGuz and he volleys just over the bar.

54 - deGuz sings a ball and The Chad has an open net and heads the ball wide.

57 - Philly's Thomas gets a yellow for hauling down White, which could have been a red if the ref wasn't feeling so generous. Ensuing corner has The Chad firing wide.

60 - SUB - Sanyang, who took a knock earlier, is off and Jacob Peterson is on

76 - More crossing of the ball, more pinball action. At least Philly hasn't had a decent chance at Toronto's goal this half.

79 - LaBrocca corner looped in, and Gargan's shot goes just right of the netting.

80 - PENALTY - O'Brien White sorta kinda gets hauled down. It's iffy, but the ref was out of position and had to make a call. I personally believe that the call itself was shaky, but for the karma in the match, it may have been earned.

80 - GOAL - And DeRo, the hardest working man in Toronto, converts. Hammers it in the right side of the net. Seitz guessed correctly, but couldn't make it.

85 - Philly are finally on the attack. The North End Elite, our favourite supporters group, hold up a banner with "NO MO MOJO". If I could give them a hug, I would.

90 - The Chad on the counter, has a break from the centre line. Now I know what you're thinking, "awwwwwww nooooooo...", and it's OK, because I was thinking that too. But he faked out 20,000+ people and once he got to the top of the box, he laid this delicious little ball to DeRo who slammed it (offside) into the crossbar. Tragic, but the right move from Barrett.

FULL-TIME : Toronto 2, Philadelphia 1


Man of the match : DeRo. He was working hard to make something out of nothing in the first half when the plan of "give Dwayne the ball" didn't work. Man he works hard.

Ref rating : 3 out 5. Blew calls evenly for both sides, and if you're gonna have sloppy officiating, it has to be across the board. The cards were justified for the most part.

Goat of the game : Dan Gargan. Hi, you're new here. We're the Yorkies. This isn't meant to be hateful. But we noticed that you have a fear of running towards goal in an ideal give-and-go or "winger-like" scenario. Also, you have the audacity to throw your arms out on a break when you were nowhere near the ball as if you could've scored. Stop doing that. Your first live impression was that you do not want the responsibility of creating anything that resembles an offensively aggressive nature. That will not do. We noticed that you were getting "Laurent Blanc service" by the end of the half... meaning, no balls on the right wing. Yeah, that's your fault. But you're learning. And when I bellow "run", that's me just saying what your teammate with the ball is about to think. Trust me. I write a blog so I must be right.

I know we all love to hate on "The Chad" Chad Barrett. He has the marksmanship that the CNIB would be embarrassed by. No matter.

Look at how stale, boring, stifling and unimaginative TFC played in the first half. Two chances strictly from set pieces. Nothing else remotely threatening. DeRo and deGuz left to fight off 4-6 defenders and score goals. Right. Now consider what happened in the second half when The Chad came on. Chances. Flow. Aggressiveness. SPEED. Creativity. Sure he missed some embarrassingly wonderful chances but he had chances. He CREATED chances.

If you actually believe that the first half TFC was better than the second half TFC, I hate to tell you how stupid that is. I'd rather have him miss than have NO ONE get a chance in the run of play. Next game will be too soon. I hope second half TFC improves. I hope first half TFC get demoted to the second division (you know, if we had one).


  1. Take a chill pill haters. We got 3 points and they looked great at times. The teams geling now and is going to keep winning. Insted of critisizing - get behind them!

  2. @ Anonymous

    I think where not paying you enough.

  3. @ MLSE BOT

    Are you a robot built by MLSE to destroy all dissent among supporters or... are you an android sent from the future that looks like Mo and has a handful of MLS Cup rings?