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Toronto FC vs. New York Red Bulls | MLS Match Preview

TORONTO FC vs NEW YORK RED BULLS
BMO FIELD, Toronto, Ont.
May 17, 2014 (WEEK 11, MLS Game #94)
4:30 p.m. ET (TSN/RDS2; MSG+)

A pair of clubs aiming to make a charge in the Eastern Conference meet Saturday afternoon when Toronto FC entertain the New York Red Bulls at BMO Field. Toronto FC return to league play riding a three-game losing streak, their last match a 2-1 home loss to New England, though they've advanced to the final of the Canadian Championship in the meantime. The Red Bulls saw their four-game undefeated run come to an end last weekend in a wild 5-4 home loss to the Chicago Fire.

DOWNLOAD GAME GUIDE (PDF)

REFEREE: Silviu Petrescu. AR1 (bench): James Conlee; AR2 (opposite): Scott Kachmarik; 4th: Geoff Gamble
MLS Career: 80 games; FC/gm: 27.6; Y/gm: 3.5; R: 10; pens: 13

SUSPENDED: none
WARNINGS:
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: none
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: TOR: Jackson - NY: Armando, Lloyd Sam
DISABLED LIST: none
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: TOR: Michael Bradley (USA) ... NY: Tim Cahill (AUS); Roy Miller (CRC)

HEAD-TO-HEAD
ALL-TIME (18 meetings): Toronto FC 4 wins, 16 goals - Red Bulls 10 wins, 36 goals - Ties 4
AT TORONTO (10 meetings): Toronto FC 3 wins, 12 goals - Red Bulls 3 wins, 13 goals - Ties 4
RETURN MATCHES: 6/27: New York Red Bulls vs. Toronto FC, 8 p.m. ET; 10/11: New York Red Bulls vs. Toronto FC, 7 p.m. ET

LAST YEAR (MLS):
4/27: TOR 1, NY 2 (Osorio 83 - Cahill 39, 89)
7/20: TOR 0, NY 0
9/14: NY 2, TOR 0 (Henry 32; Espindola 80)

  • The Red Bulls have an 10-game undefeated streak alive (7-0-3) vs. Toronto FC, dating back to June 24, 2009, a 2-0 TFC win at BMO Field. New York has two wins and three draws in its last five visits to Toronto.
  • The Red Bulls have won their last five home games vs. TFC, and have won all four meetings lifetime at Red Bull Arena (with a 12-1 goal differential). TFC's only away win vs. New York came in 2008, a 3-1 win at Giants Stadium.
  • Coaches record: Ryan Nelsen vs. NY: P3 W0 L2 D1 Mike Petke vs. TOR: P3 W2 L0 D1

TORONTO FC
Toronto FC return to action following another bye week in league play, their last match a third consecutive defeat in a 2-1 loss to the New England Revolution on May 3 at BMO Field. TFC sit in a tie for eighth place in the Eastern Conference, with 9 points from 7 matches.

LAST MATCH

  • Toronto FC struck early, taking the lead in the sixth minute as Jackson drilled an audacious, low shot from 30 yards out that deflected off the foot of Revs defender A.J. Soares and into the back of the net.
  • The Revolution were level in the 24th minute. A misplaced pass was intercepted by Daigo Kobayashi, and he fed rookie Patrick Mullins, who then lashed a left-footed missile that beat goalkeeper Julio Cesar with a well-placed shot into the top corner.
  • The decisive goal came eight minutes from time. Mullins fired a shot toward goal which was deflected in the box by TFC defender Doneil Henry's raised arm and referee Mark Geiger pointed to the spot. Lee Nguyen easily beat Julio Cesar, who went the wrong way on the penalty attempt.
  • TFC head coach Ryan Nelsen made two changes to the team that suffered a 2-1 loss to FC Dallas at Toyota Stadium. Doneil Henry came into the back four for Bradley Orr, and Jermain Defoe started in place of Issey Nakajima-Farran.
  • TORONTO FC (4-1-3-2): Julio Cesar - Mark Bloom (Dwayne De Rosario 87), Doneil Henry, Steven Caldwell, Justin Morrow - Kyle Bekker (Alvaro Rey 68) - Jackson (Issey Nakajima-Farran 78), Michael Bradley, Jonathan Osorio - Jermain Defoe, Gilberto.

TEAM NEWS

  • TFC lost their third match in a row, and their fourth out of the last five games after opening their MLS campaign with two consecutive wins. It was also their second straight home defeat.
  • "I think we have to learn how to win at TFC," TFC head coach Ryan Nelsen said. "It seems like, if we concede on our home field, it seems to be the worst thing that ever happened. We just have to get a bit more confidence at home. If something sets us back, so be it. We need to keep playing."
  • After missing three matches through injury, Jermain Defoe returned to the starting lineup and played the full 90 minutes.
  • "Overall, we felt like the better team, especially in the second half," Defoe said. "They didn't really have any good chances. I thought we were the better side in the second half. Then they get the penalty and you're chasing the game, trying to get back into it. It's difficult."
  • Doneil Henry also returned to the back four after missing three matches through injury, playing the full 90 minutes in central defense.
  • Designated Player Gilberto was involved on the scoresheet for the first time in an MLS match, recording an assist on the Jackson goal.
  • "He's doing everything right, sometimes it happens where, as a forward, you get chances and you are just so close," said Defoe. "But all the lads are behind him. Once the first one goes in then then he'll score loads. ... It's just a case for him to keep going. He's getting the chances; he's getting to the right position so he's doing well."
  • Following the last league match, Toronto FC advanced to the final in the Amway Canadian Championship, defeating Vancouver Whitecaps FC on penalty kicks after a 3-3 aggregate scoreline through two legs. In the second leg, Whitecaps FC took a 2-1 win at BC Place, but TFC won the penalty shootout 5-3 to advance to the final against the Montreal Impact.
  • Here's the TFC team: Joe Bendik; Nick Hagglund, Doneil Henry, Bradley Orr, Ashtone Morgan (Mark Bloom 79);Issey Nakajima-Farran, Kyle Bekker (Daniel Lovitz 64), Michael Bradley, Jonathan Osorio; Luke Moore, Gilberto (Dwayne De Rosario 83)
  • In the first leg, TFC defeated Whitecaps FC 2-1 at BMO Field on May 7. Jermain Defoe scored in the 28th minute and Michael Bradley added an 89th-minute tally before Whitecaps FC pulled back a late goal.
  • Here's the TFC team: Joe Bendik; Mark Bloom, Steven Caldwell, Doneil Henry, Justin Morrow; Issey Nakajima-Farran (Dwayne De Rosario 79), Kyle Bekker, Michael Bradley, Alvaro Rey; Jermain Defoe, Gilberto (Andrew Wiedeman 89)

NEW YORK RED BULLS
The New York Red Bulls saw their undefeated run come to an end after four matches, falling 5-4 to the Chicago Fire in an historic match Saturday evening at Red Bull Arena. The Red Bulls sit in a tie for third place in the Eastern Conference with 14 points from 11 matches on the season.

LAST MATCH

  • The Fire took the lead after just four minutes when a cross from Harry Shipp found the back of the net, as the flag stayed down with a Fire striker in an apparent offside position. But the Red Bulls were level two minutes later when Tim Cahill thundered home a header off a cross from Eric Alexander.
  • The Red Bulls then took the lead into the break when Thierry Henry pushed the ball deep into the Fire end and unleashed a cross that Bradley Wright-Phillips one-timed into the back of the net.
  • But the Fire gained the lead back with two goals within a five-minute span. Quincy Amarikwa beat Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles with a header off a feed from Jeff Larentowicz in the 49th minute, then Shipp scored his second of the day with a low shot in the 54th.
  • The visitors made it 5-2 when Shipp completed his hat trick in the 58th minute, pickpocketing defender Kosuke Kimura before slotting a ball into the back of the net from the left side of the box.
  • But the Red Bulls came back with two more tallies from Wright-Phillips. He first finished off a chested pass from Lloyd Sam in the 66th minute, then converted a penalty kick in the 78th minute after Henry was fouled.
  • Red Bulls boss Mike Petke made no changes to the team that defeated FC Dallas 1-0 at Toyota Stadium.
  • NEW YORK RED BULLS (4-4-2): Luis Robles - Kosuke Kimura (Peguy Luyindula 66), Jamison Olave, Armando, Roy Miller - Lloyd Sam, Dax McCarty, Tim Cahill, Eric Alexander (Jonny Steele 65) - Bradley Wright-Phillips, Thierry Henry.

TEAM NEWS

  • The Red Bulls saw their undefeated streak come to an end at four games, despite scoring four goals for the second time in the last four matches.
  • "It wasn't good enough. We gave them most goals, self-inflicted," said Red Bulls head coach Mike Petke. "It wasn't good enough. We could talk all we want about the second half and late coming back and almost tying it, but when you're down by three goals, of course that's what you're going to do. We looked to push for goals and we got them, so I commend their effort, they worked hard at the end. But we should never have been in that position to begin with."
  • The Red Bulls conceded five goals for the first time since a 5-2 loss on Oct. 23, 2008, which also came to the Chicago Fire, at Toyota Park. That season the Red Bulls allowed five goals in three separate games, including twice to Chicago.
  • "It's tough for me to be critical of my team to be quite honest with you, because every year you got to allow yourself at least a game like this, maybe two, and I have been there before and that's what I told them in the locker room," said Petke. "I told them I have been there before, so it's hard for me to yell at them and hard for me to blow up. I've been on the losing end of a game like this and I have been exhausted after a game like this, like these guys are because they did everything they could to come back. So, I commend that but we're a better team than that."
  • Said Thierry Henry: "We didn't get punished against Houston and everybody was celebrating the 4-0. It could've been 4-4. It wasn't, but [the Fire] put the ball in the back of the net so we lost 5-4."
  • Bradley Wright-Phillips scored his second hat trick in four matches, and now has eight goals over those four games. Along with Chicago's Harry Shipp, it marked the first time in MLS history two hat tricks had been scored in the same match.
  • Wright-Phillips is now the leader in the MLS Golden Boot standings with nine goals from 10 games on the season.
  • "Bradley is coming into his own lately - over the last four, five games - and that's very refreshing and very good for us and individually for his confidence," said Petke. "I think once he just got that goal [on April 23], he started to gain confidence. He's a streaky striker that obviously is bolstered by some confidence. He got that one goal, got the monkey off his back, I guess you could say, and then he just ran with it."
  • Tim Cahill made his second consecutive start after being out of the first team for five straight games through injury, and played the full 90 minutes. It was his final appearance before joining Australia in preparation for the FIFA World Cup.
  • "I'm quietly confident we're going to do well, because there's not really many teams that, when we're playing well, we have confidence you can see in the first half no one can touch us regardless of going down 1-nil," Cahill said. "But it's a long season and I've got no real big worries even though a few of us are heading off to the World Cup. We did well, we just have ourselves to blame for a few silly mistakes."