You know what you’re going to get from Seattle. Kim Kee-hee has become one of the more reliable, consistently good center backs in the league. Kelvin Leerdam and Brad Smith will fly down the wings and create chances, then provide good, though not great, defensive cover. Roman Torres or Xavier Arreaga will provide the muscle.
Toronto have more variables.
Omar Gonzalez has not appeared in the Audi 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs yet as he’s dealt with an injury. He’s made the gameday roster for the last two games, though, and the 10-day rest should give him time to work back toward full fitness. Toronto have only lost once in the 14 games that Gonzalez has started since his return to MLS. Will Vanney reinsert him into the lineup, and break up a pairing in Chris Mavinga and Laurent Ciman that has worked nicely (albeit unconventionally) throughout the playoffs?
Will it be one of those days when Mavinga, Ciman or Gonzalez has a stinker? All three might have more overall talent than Seattle’s center-back pairing, but all three are more prone to that one mistake that could cost the game.
What formation will Vanney use? Toronto have started with a four-defender formation throughout the playoffs, but a 5-3-2 suits them better with everyone healthy. Gonzalez could enter the lineup as a third center back; Michael Bradley, Jonathan Osorio, and Marky Delgado could play as three center mids; and Alejandro Pozuelo could partner Jozy Altidore up top. It’d be risky to go away from what’s helped Toronto be successful thus far in the playoffs, but Vanney isn’t scared to throw a surprise for MLS Cup. Remember when he opted for the diamond midfield in 2017?
I’m going with Seattle just because, as a matter of personal preference, I don’t like variables.