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Sunday, May 22, 2011

AFTER 90: Battling Reds baffle Burgundy

"Rapids are smelly pirate hookers"

In the midst of a ridiculously crowded fixture list, with arguably the season's most important match a mere three days away, Toronto FC faced a difficult trip to face MLS Cup holders Colorado Rapids. Playing the boys in burgundy from The Mile High Suburb is never easy and Aron Winter had some big squad decisions to make with visions of NutCans dancing in his head. So it was off to Commerce City for a tough Sunday evening tilt. Discovered by the Germans in 1904, they named it Colorado, which of course in German means 'a whale's vagina'.
1' - Let's go over the ground rules. "Rule number 1: No touching of the hair or face... AND THAT'S IT!" Kick-off...
2' - Never a good attendance sign when you can read "COLORADO" on the seats at Dick's Sporting Goods Park
4' - Injuries and suspensions leading Aron Winter to field an experimental line-up. The Manhattan Project was an experiment too
8' - Richard Eckersley hustles to pull a cross into Rapids' box but no TFC finishers. Shocking... we know
12' - The Javier Martina / Richard Eckersley right-wing combo causing Rapids early problems
15' - I think someone is playing jazz flute in the stands
17' - Dicoy Williams with a great sliding tackle in the TFC box on Quincy Amarikwa - whose name sounds like Jamiroquai on GolTV
25' - Marvell Wynne is being marked by Dan Gargan. Someone needs to call the UN, that has to be a human rights violation
27' - Jamaican defender Dicoy Williams takes elbow to the face and gets an open cut. Bloodclot!
34' - "Knights of Columbus, that hurt" Ex-Red Tyrone Marshall chops down Super Villain Mikael Yourassowsky. No call
37' - Conor Casey may have spent his injury rehab at Krispy Kreme. Big boy got bigger
41' - Play mostly contained to midfield as both teams having trouble with finishing
44' - "By the beard of Zeus!" A fantastic run by Joao Plata followed by a neat Martina pass sees Nick Soolsma with an open chance but blasts his shot straight into Rapids' keeper Matt Pickens' arms
45' + - Jamiroquai does a virtual insanity dive in TFC's penalty area but the referee correctly (shocking, we know) waves off claims for a Colorado penalty
45' + - Watching last five minutes of the half was like being "in a glass case of emotion"
45' - Will the plan to drink as much warm milk at halftime as possible work for TFC? It sure didn't against Vancouver. "It's so damn hot...milk was a bad choice."
49' - A great run down the wing by Eckersley who fires a shot and forces a good save from Pickens
52' - Dan Gargan's handball leads to a free kick taken by Sanna Nyassi. Cleared by Nathan Sturgis (he exists!) after a scramble in front of Stefan Frei
56' - Conor Casey collides heavily with Dicoy Williams. "Right in the ovary... A straight shot. Right in the babymaker."
59' - SUB: "Look, I don't speak Spanish" Joao Plata off for Maicon Santos or possibly Mike Sanders
61' - "Sweet Lincoln's mullet!" Mikael Yourassowsky with a surging run but his drilled shot hits the Rapids crossbar. So unlucky
64' - Teams trading chances at goal, surprisingly The Reds looking more likely to capitalize... for now
69' - Rapids succumbing to constant foul calls and getting up in the ref's face. They need to shut their "dirty whorish mouths"
74' - SUB: Adrian Cann comes off in what must be a NutCan preservation plan. "Mr. Mobility" Ty Harden
 his replacement

80' - Rapids suddenly pouring on the pressure and causing Gargan to be more involved. Never a good thing
82' - YELLOW CARD for Javier Martina as things get scrappy in the midfield and the Dutch dread gets testy
83' - SUB: "Son of a bee-sting!" A rare sight as Nana Attakora makes an appearance and come on for the equally phantom Nathan Sturgis
86' - Frei makes a big save on a whipping Rapids cross only to be hit hard by a charging Jeff Larentowicz. The Goalblerone is okay... Thank God
89' - "Oh TFC, there are literally thousands of clubs that I should be with instead but I am 72 percent sure that I love you."
90'+ - Marvell Wynne's pace has successfully eliminated 99% of Toronto counter-attacks. How does a club acquire a player of his ilk?
90'+ - Ref finally closes the (very) long extra time, signalling the end of an entertaining draw
The usual line on a TFC away match is "60% of the time... they lose every time". Despite low expectations due to fatigue, injury and the Mile High conditions, The Reds surprised tonight with a rag-tag line-up that performed admirably and were rarely inferior to the MLS Cup holders. Some very good wing play from both Richard Eckersley and Mikael Yourassowsky was positive but did however illuminate the woeful finishing options on the squad. Overall, a reasonably good performance and a welcome away point - something as rarefied as the Colorado air. Stay classy Commerce City.
PLAYER RATINGS: Stefan Frei 6.5 / Richard Eckersley 7.5 / Dicoy Williams 7 / Adrian Cann 6.5 / Dan Gargan 5.5 / Alen Stevanovic 6 / Nathan Sturgis 6 / Mikael Yourassowsky 7 / Nick Soolsma 6 / Javier Martina 6 / Joao Plata 6 / SUBS: Maicon Santos 5.5 / Ty Harden 6 / Nana Attakora -
TFC MAN OF THE MATCH: Richard Eckersley
Point made. Attakora over Gargan every time. Discuss

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