Despite Toronto FC's lost season, standout rookie Jonathan Osorio leaving his mark
TORONTO – While his emergence as a key player for his club has undoubtedly been one of the bright spots for Toronto FC this year, midfielder Jonathan Osorio is finding the success he has enjoyed in his MLS rookie campaign to date to be somewhat bittersweet.
“Personally, my first season has been great,” Osorio told MLSsoccer.com. “As a rookie, I have accomplished a lot. I’m very happy that I have helped the team as much as I could and I will continue to try and do that. But honestly, it is not the same when your team is not getting results.”
With Toronto FC currently in the midst of a six-game winless run, recent optimistic discussion around the team has usually centered on the fine play this season of the 21-year-old Osorio and his midfield teammate Matías Laba, who is also 21 years of age.
Thus, while the 2-10-8 Reds have not had a whole lot of positives to write home about in recent weeks, the fact that Toronto look to have found two young core midfielders with buckets of potential who really complement each other has to be real boon for coach Ryan Nelsen’s rebuilding efforts.
“We understand each other,” Osorio said of Laba, a young Designated Player who made his debut for TFC back in May. “He comes from an Argentinian background and I come from a Uruguayan soccer background. It is the same kind of game and we link up well. We are also good friends who help each other out. It’s more than just being teammates, we are good friends.”
As Toronto’s current second leading scorer, Osorio has looked equally proficient playing in a central midfield role and out wide. With a successful half-season now under his belt in the North American top flight, the TFC Academy graduate only has one real goal for the second half of Toronto's 2013 MLS campaign.
“It is always about getting as many wins as we can,” Osorio said. “It is a long shot, but if we can still push for a playoff spot, why not? Nothing is impossible. If we don’t make it this year, we are building for next year. I’m pretty sure that we will be successful in the years to come.”
While Nelsen has preached patience at many points this season when Toronto have struggled to close out matches and gain all three points from competitive performances, one cloud that is currently hanging over TFC comes in the form of the fact that the club has not won a match at their regular home pitch of BMO Field in more than a year, with Toronto’s only home victory this season coming in March when the team defeated Sporting Kansas City at Rogers Centre.
The home winless streak has been weighing somewhat on Osorio, who is a Toronto native and who counted himself as a TFC fan growing up. Thus, the Canadian international was not shy in admitting that he is yearning to experience his first victory at BMO.
“I feel like the win is coming and I feel like it will come really soon,” Osorio said. “We have a chance next weekend and that is the beauty of soccer. Hopefully next weekend we’ll get it done.”