Patrick Mullins, Nick DeLeon and Marky Delgado all scored within the first 30 minutes and Michael Bradley and Nicolas Benezet added a goal apiece in the second half, pacing Toronto FC to a 5-1 romp over FC Cincinnati at Nippert Stadium on Saturday.
Toronto struck first just 10 minutes into the contest, after Mullins collected a pass that deflected off Delgado just outside the 18-yard box and lashed his finish past Cincinnati goalkeeper Przemyslaw Tyton, staking the visitors to the early 1-0 lead.
The Reds then doubled that advantage 11 minutes later off a corner kick that was cleared right into the path of DeLeon, who put a perfectly placed volley into the net. Toronto finished off its first-half barrage with its third of the evening in the 28th minute courtesy of Delgado, who slid completely unmarked in front of goal for an easy finish of a cross from Alejandro Pozuelo.
The onslaught continued in the second half, as Bradley added some insurance for the visitors with a laser finish off another assist from Pozuelo in the 63rd minute, with Benezet adding a fifth in the 85th before Emmanuel Ledesma got a late penalty kick goal for Cincinnati in second-half stoppage time to round out the 5-1 final scoreline.
- 10' - TOR - Patrick Mullins | WATCH
- 21' - TOR - Nick DeLeon | WATCH
- 28' - TOR - Marky Delgado | WATCH
- 63' - TOR - Michael Bradley | WATCH
- 85' - TOR - Nicolas Benezet | WATCH
- 90' - CIN - Emmanuel Ledesma | WATCH
- THE BIG PICTURE: Toronto really needed three points to keep pace in the Eastern Conference playoff race, so in that sense it was mission accomplished. The Reds are now 11-10-8 and temporarily vault up to a tie with the New York Red Bulls for fifth in the East with 41 points. For FC Cincy, they were admittedly short-handed, but it was still more of the same in an expansion season that has already seen plenty of shambolic defending, with this latest result dropping the club's goal differential to -43 in 2019.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: If there was one moment that aptly illustrated just how easy Toronto had it in the first half, it was Delgado's 28th-minute header, which came without a defender anywhere near him.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: DeLeon and Bradley both provided pretty highlights with their goals, but we'll give the nod to Pozuelo, who added two more assists to give the Spanish playmaker 11 dimes on the season in 23 starts.