Toronto FC's young midfield plays starring role in win over Columbus

TORONTO – BMO Field, with its new roof and raucous fans, is starting to look like a fortress for Toronto FC.

Sunday night's 3-0 win over Columbus Crew was their fifth of the season, stretching their home unbeaten run to seven.

“That was one of our goals, to make this place a fortress,” said Greg Vanney in his post-match remarks. “[Get] not just results, but comfortable results, and score some goals – that's what people come to see.”

Much of the credit goes to a youthful midfield, comprised of Marky Delgado, Jay Chapman, Tsubasa Endoh, and Jonathan Osorio, guiding the team without the services of the injured Benoit Cheyrou, Michael Bradley, and Will Johnson.

Endoh scored the opener, while Chapman set up the second, and Delgado had a hand in each, forcing a turnover on the first and initiating the second with a cross-field ball.

“Their willingness to work, be engaged, and locked in all the time, gives them the opportunity to be successful,” said Vanney of the quartet. “They're continuing to progress. It's fun to watch; not many people would see us put that lineup out and bet on us on the day. We took it to [Columbus], so I'm very proud.”

“A lot of credit has to go to the young guys,” added Jozy Altidore. “For all the talk of us big guys, [they] have done an incredible job keeping everything going; they played some great soccer today.”

But much of the attention will go to those 'big guys', namely Sebastian Giovinco and Altidore, who each scored a goal, while Giovinco added two assists.

“[Giovinco] has missed [Altidore] as much as anyone,” said Vanney of his reunited strike force. “[If] they continue to work off of each other, they'll be virtually unstoppable. At times last year they didn't connect as much as they have in the last couple games. That for me is very exciting.”

The goal, albeit heavily deflected, was Altidore's first of the season. It came as a relief after a long injury layoff. “To finally get out there, be under the lights again and to just play soccer is fantastic,” beamed the forward.

The win also saw the side take possession of the Trillium Cup, their second trophy of the season, alongside the Voyageurs Cup from the Amway Canadian Championship.

“We'll take the silverware, but the points push us up the table,” said a focused Vanney. “We're aiming for the group in front of us. Two more at home this week, in quick succession, getting off to a start of three points was huge.”

“I prefer to win the last trophy,” smiled Giovinco, alluding to the MLS Cup. “It was an important three points, for the team, for Jozy because he scored. This is how we have to keep going.”