TORONTO – Toronto FC took a point against D.C. United on a rainy night at BMO Field. But TFC skipper Michael Bradley says his side could have gotten a couple more in a disappointing match that ended scoreless at the final whistle.
“When we play at home, the idea is to step on the field and get three points, no matter who we play against,” Bradley told reporters after the match. “On that end, sure, it’s disappointing. Still, when you look at the game, the way we played and the chances we were able to create, on a different day, if we’re a little bit sharper or catch a break, it can be a game where we walk away with three points."
“The important thing is that in the end we didn’t really risk losing because they’re a team that, on a lot of days, finds way to win games like this,” he added. “For us to know how to take our points on days like this--not be totally happy with it, but understand that a point's a point and move ourselves forward--is important.”
Toronto FC were coming off an emotional win over their rivals, the Montreal Impact on Wednesday night. Defender Damien Perquis also thought his team should have come away with another three points on Saturday night.
“I think we played better [than D.C. United],” he said. “We had some occasions to score. They had one in the first half but tonight wasn’t really our night. It’s no problem. We take a point and we are improving game after game. That’s the most important thing."
Toronto FC created a number of chances, recording 18 shots in total, but only managed to test goalkeeper Bill Hamid three times. Similarly, D.C. United didn’t manage to test Chris Konopka more than a couple of times in a game that spanned some tough conditions. That's something Sebastian Giovinco admitted influenced the team's playing, but said it “can’t be an excuse.”
“In the end, we weren’t as precise and clinical as usual, as always,” Giovinco said. “But of course, that can happen during the season. As long as we keep working hard, we will achieve our results.”
Still, a point against D.C. United, following up on a win at RFK Stadium a few weeks ago, gives Toronto FC plenty of optimism. But don’t call D.C. United Eastern Conference leaders just yet. Bradley says the East is still wide open.
“They’re the Eastern Conference leaders because they’ve played five more games than us,” Bradley said, visibly fired up. “It’s hard to look at the table. It’s a skewed table and a skewed schedule. We feel like we have a group that if we continue to move ourselves forward and improve, we can be there in the end."
“It’s important to look hard at yourselves along the way and grade yourself as the season goes on," he continued, "but in the end, the real grades come after 34 games and then after the playoffs."