Young players are making their mark for Toronto FC as the club continues its preseason camp in Turkey.
On Sunday, TFC Academy product and 2010 Winthrop University MVP Matt Stinson scored TFC’s goal in a 1-0 win over Serbian side Red Star Belgrade.
According to first assistant Bob de Klerk, Stinson’s goal was just the reward for the work the young Reds have been doing in training.
“I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the skill of the young guys,” de Klerk said. “[I have] big compliments [for them]. They have really picked up the new system and have done well with it.”
GALLERY: Toronto FC defeat Red Star Belgrade
Although a win against a club like Red Star Belgrade is always welcome, the real work is happening on the training pitch and video room, where de Klerk said the club is having multiple video sessions a day to learn head coach Aron Winter’s system.
There was evidence of that work in Sunday’s win.
“The biggest thing they did today was stay organized – play what we want to play, how we want to play,” de Klerk said.
The assistant coach said TFC will look to hold the ball and move forward as a single unit in 2011.
“We can play football,” de Klerk said. “As long as we are holding the ball, [opponents] can’t score.”
Toronto will their final game in Turkey – against Dinamo Zagreb – on Thursday before returning to Toronto ahead of their second phase of preseason training.