TORONTO — It was an ambitious goal for a team that had not won since May 7. Toronto FC wanted to beat the Vancouver Whitecaps twice in the same week — now they're halfway there.
The Reds took three points in league play from the Whitecaps with a 1-0 win on Wednesday at BMO Field off a second-half penalty by Nick Soolsma. On Saturday, they'll again try to sink their Canadian rivals, this time for their third consecutive Nutrilite Canadian Championship and a chance to play in the CONCACAF Champions League.
“I think the three points were very necessary,” Soolsma said. ”It feels very good and I think that it is the return from ties and losing, and now a start to winning games.”
This week has already been a big week for TFC. Hours before snapping a 10-game winless streak in all competitions against Vancouver, Toronto announced the signings of German midfielder Torsten Frings and Dutch striker Danny Koevermans as their newest Designated Players.
The duo will not only bring their skills to the MLS side, but most importantly, they’ll provide the leadership qualities that have been lacking in the locker room.
“They are two proven players,” said defender Dan Gargan. “We are hoping they will come in and help us, and I'm sure they will.”
Frings and Koevermans will not be eligible to start playing for Toronto until mid-July, and with several of their more experienced players sidelined, the club will have to make do with what they have to get the job done against Vancouver.
“That always plays a huge part, but we have to make do with what we have,” midfielder Danleigh Borman said. “I think the guys are capable of doing it. We’re capable of winning with the players that we have.”
There is, for the first time in a long stretch, a positive buzz surrounding Toronto FC. And they hope to keep it going with a victory on Saturday.