TORONTO — Alan Gordon may not be the most spectacular forward in MLS, but Toronto FC are hoping he'll continue one of the more remarkable trends of his recent career: scoring on his former teams.
Gordon will get his first crack at the LA Galaxy as a member of TFC on Saturday as the Reds travel to the Home Depot Center (10:30 p.m. ET; watch LIVE online). The veteran was sidelined when LA visited BMO Field in April, but is sufficiently recovered from a nagging groin injury that has kept him out of Toronto’s past six matches.
But returning to Carson, Calif., to face the Galaxy will make his comeback that much more special.
“I have old friends on that team,” Gordon said of LA, where he spent parts of seven seasons. “Anytime that happens, you want to win to kind of hold boasting power for the next year. It’s going to be fun.”
Gordon scored 16 goals in 99 games with the Galaxy before they traded him to Chivas USA on Aug. 5 of last year, so it’s not the first time he has played against the team that drafted him.
“It does add a little extra motivation," Gordon said. "I’ve got a couple of guys over there that I’m good friends with. I wouldn’t say one more than the other, but I’ve shared a lot of years with those guys.”
Toronto FC can only hope Gordon continues to have the success he has already had against both of his former teams. Playing for Chivas USA, he scored a goal in a 2-1 loss to the Galaxy on Oct. 3. Chivas then traded him to Toronto in March and, against the Goats on April 2, he scored in a 1-1 draw at BMO Field.
With nine home games under their belts already, Toronto FC are in a situation where they are must pick up points on the road. TFC have 13 points from 14 matches, while the Galaxy have 30 points from 16 games. However, the teams have trouble scoring when they meet. Both matches last season finished 0-0.
“They’re going to be tough to break down, but every game is going to be important for us — not just this game,” Gordon said. “Every game now is a big stepping stone to get the season on the right track.”
Gordon will be looking for his first minutes since May 4, when he left midway through Toronto’s 1-0 win over FC Edmonton in the semfinal second leg of the Nutrilite Canadian Championship, in which Gordon scored the game’s lone goal. He knows his team needs him.
“We need that win and those points to get going and get back into the mix," he said. "We haven’t really gotten on a roll yet. We’ve had some good games, but we have to start having some consistent weeks. I need to start having some consistent weeks, too.”