Rare goal a welcome one for Toronto FC's de Guzman

Julian De Guzman of Toronto FC

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Julian de Guzman’s game certainly isn’t about scoring goals.

But the Toronto FC holding midfielder seems to have a knack for scoring big ones, and he did it again with what turned out to be the game-winner in the Reds’ 2-1 victory over Panamian side Tauro FC in the clubs’ CONCACAF Champions League Group C opener on Thursday night in Panama City.

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De Guzman — whose only other goal in a TFC uniform came in a 3-3 regular season draw against D.C. United on Aug. 6 — scored on a right-footed shot from about 30 yards out in the win.

“The ball just came to my feet and then I just saw space in front of me,” he said. “So I knew I was in good range to get the shot off and that’s what I did. That moment, or any moment where I find myself with the ball, and I’m in their third, if there’s any space in front of me the first thing I think of is to attack that space.

“And the second is to try to get the pass off, or if I find myself in very good range  then I’ll even  get the shot off,” he added. “If I can do that, if I can hit the a ball on goal I know a  lot of things can happen from that, whether it’s a rebound, a corner kick or even better, a goal.”

Even though he rarely scores, it doesn’t mean he doesn’t enjoy the goals when they come — especially game-winners.

“For me it’s always a pleasure to score goals, something I don’t do very often,” he said. “But whenever the opportunity is there to score a goal or even get the shot off, I think it’s important for someone like me in the midfield to do so.”