Toronto have won just once in those 11 matches and are already 11 points below the playoff line in the Eastern Conference.
It’s a shocking reversal for a club that is perennially one of the league’s best and are just one year removed from competing for the Supporters’ Shield.
That naturally leads to questions like what happened, what’s gone wrong and is there a way out of this?
But in the immediate aftermath Saturday night, it was difficult to find tangible explanations.
“After 90 minutes like that, there's nothing to say,” Toronto FC captain Michael Bradley said. “We let ourselves down. We let our fans down and we let everybody who follows us down. Not even close to good enough. Not who we are, and I'm sorry. When you play like that, when you lose like that, words mean nothing afterwards.”
HIGHLIGHTS: D.C. United vs. Toronto FC | July 03, 2021
It went pear-shaped early for Toronto FC, who conceded the opening goal inside two minutes, trailed 2-0 inside 10 minutes and were down 3-0 before the half-hour mark.
The final four goals were given up in the final 30 minutes and embattled first-year head coach Chris Armas was asked if the players gave up.
“You lose by that margin, yeah, look, it's demoralizing. That's part of it, yeah,” Armas said. “So these guys have been through a lot, and it's hard to stay in it. And yeah, it's transition moments cost us, yeah. It's demoralizing. So part of it's human nature in moments to just give in.”
That said, Armas doesn’t believe he’s lost the locker room and Bradley was quick to back his coach and shift the blame to the players.
“We're not in a good way right now and it's nobody's fault but ours, the players,” Bradley said. “People want to look around and point fingers and say it's Chris's fault, he's not done a good enough job — bulls*. The players, we have to look at ourselves and find more. I've not done a good enough job as captain. I've not been a good enough leader. I've not been a good enough player and people should look at that, people should look at the guys on the field.”
So where do TFC go from here? There's a short turnaround to their next match — against East-leading New England on Wednesday night at Gillette Stadium (7:30 pm ET | MLS LIVE on ESPN+).
They’re down, but they say not out.
“We're 11 games in. The guys just have to get going. This is not 20 games in. Yeah, but something has to give,” Armas said. “There has to be a real shift in what goes on. So looking for solutions. You know, is it formation? Is it a couple of starters? Is it my fault? You can start looking every which way but something has to give. Something’s got to give.”
Bradley believes there’s enough quality to put together a run and turn the season around.
“I don't need to tell you the history of the league and the number of teams that have been able to — in second halves of seasons or in the last 20 games of seasons have been able to go on, you know, put things together in a real good way and go on a really good run,” Bradley said. “We certainly can't take that for granted, that's for sure. But we're going to — until it's mathematically impossible, we're going to keep going and try to get things going in a real way.”