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Saturday, May 1, 2010

Preki drops a depth charge

"Better call Barry."

After the Garcia hit the fan last week regarding the Gerba and Cummins interviews, MLSE VP Tom Anselmi was the most vocally dismissive of the comments - especially Gerba's. Anselmi ventured that Gerba's dismissal from TFC was not only due to the player's lack of quality but that in fact, his dismissal showed that The Reds' depth was actually better than people were saying. Umm... no.

After a tough seven days, Preki decided that his core starters wouldn't start the match tonight against the defending champions Real Salt Lake. Instead, the TFC bench, which Mo Johnston has assured us is a masterpiece in the making, took to the stage with none other than Chad Barrett as their captain. With De Rosario, De Guzman et al watching from the bench, Captain Chad led out a squad whose core was hastily put together by Mastermind Mo with a mixture of trials, his agent and scotch tape. The results were not surprising.

RSL came out with their tails up and pounded the open space between the Toronto midfield and defence. Contstant direct runs and in-swinging crosses paid off quickly for The Royals as Jamison Olave opened the scoring on the 13th minute. The highlight of TFC's offensive output was a looping header by Joseph Nane which was stopped well by RSL keeper Nick Rimando. Calling anything else Toronto did offense would be... well, offensive. RSL's continuing pressure led to Toronto-born forward Andy Willliams crashing home the second goal and the teams went to the dressing rooms with The Utahns (Utohnians? Utahites?) leading 2-0.

With the goodwill of the last two TFC matches drifting away, Preki brought on all of Scarborough FC for the second half. De Ro, JDG and O'Brien White finally added a little bit of form to TFC's missing offence but RSL already had the match in control. OBW went close and hit the crossbar early but that was the extent of TFC's creativity for most of the second until a De Ro cross in the 87th minute hit "Natty Dread" Kyle Beckerman's arm and the ref gave a very generous penalty. De Ro stepped up and cashed in his 7th goal of the season for The Torontos - but it was too little too late.

De Ro's goal, rather than giving late hope to Toronto only worked to prove how this is a club of only two or three really valuable pieces. Stefan Frei, Dwayne De Rosario and Julian De Guzman are solid professionals - the rest are a mixture of green kids, international cast-offs and First Wave favours. Yes, Preki's hand was forced by a very crowded schedule but once again Mo Johnston's pathetic excuse at depth is apparent. Preki shouldn't be forced to concede victory before the match everytime one or two players are unavailable. What would Mr. Anselmi say about this team's "hidden depth" if God forbid De Ro got injured?



  1. It was a ridiculous decision not to start DeRo & DeGuzman. Who goes into a match to defend a draw? This defensive grind it out football is not entertaining and was the worst game of football I've seen in a long time.

  2. I think it was cruddy football, but these are the same people who brought you the second half in New England and dullness in Columbus. It is part of a series.
    We fans can't have it both ways- resting DeRo and JDG could be looked at as Preki's salute to the importance of the NutCan.
    I think that the back four show hope and promise, it was the no pass, no tackle, no clue midfield in the first half that were brutal. I kept expecting Attakora to come forward and tackle Sanyang to keep possession of the ball.

    I think a group from Utah are known as Utahtahs (Seriously, I think it is Utes)

  3. @ still kicking
    I like your point about resting for the cup - winning it would be great. At the same time the article is right - what if deRo gets injured? we would have no chance.