TORONTO, On. (April 15, 2010) – After just five days rest, Philadelphia Union lost to Eastern Conference foe Toronto FC 2-1 in the first MLS match on grass at BMO Field. Dwayne De Rosario was the star of the evening, scoring both of Toronto’s goals.
“I thought we came out and really had good control of the game," said Coach John Hackworth, who was filling in for Manager Peter Nowak on the sideline with Nowak honoring the victims of the recent Polish tragedy for a second straight game. "It’s a tough environment, tough atmosphere to play in, but for me we created some really good chances in that (first) thirty minutes.
"We controlled the ball, especially when we put it on the ground. They were trying to put us under pressure but when we were able to play out wide it was good. We had a couple of good set pieces where we had good chances as well. Very frustrating to walk out of this game with no points.”
Philadelphia controlled possession early, but were unable to break through in the attacking third.
The momentum shifted after Danny Califf was handed a red card in the 34th minute, the second time the Union have lost a man in their first three games. Califf’s back-pass to goalkeeper Chris Seitz lacked sufficient pace, and the Captain was forced to blocked Julian de Guzman’s path to the ball. On the ensuing free kick, Dwayne De Rosario struck low and hard at Seitz, who had trouble with the pace and let the ball find its way into the net in the 35th minute.
The lead didn’t last long however, as Philadelphia answered in the 46th minute despite being down a man. After a give-and-go between Sebastien Le Toux and Alejandro Moreno, Le Toux found Roger Torres in space, who turned towards goal and curled a beautiful pass towards the far post. A streaking Jordan Harvey ran onto Torres’ service, took one touch and poked the ball past Toronto goalkeeper Stefan Frei to even the score at 1-1.
It was difficult to tell the Union were down a man for much of the second half, with Toronto unable to effectively control the run of play.
But Toronto struck again in the 81st minute after Seitz was called for a foul in the box while diving on the ball to break up O’Brian White’s run. Dwayne De Rosario stepped up for the penalty kick and netted his second goal of the night, blasting the ball past a diving Seitz, who guessed correctly to his right, for a 2-1 lead.
“We’re all sticking together, it’s a long season," said goalkeeper Chris Seitz. "We talked about how after last Thursday we’re not going to take our highs too high and we’re not going to take our lows too low. We’ll take a lot out of this game and move on to our next game.”
“I firmly believe that our team can learn from our mistakes," added Hackworth. "I think we have a young team that needs to be in these kinds of environments. We’ve played in two unbelievable away games and one at home where the crowds were loud and boisterous, where there were things happening on the field you always can’t control. But as long as we continue to build on what we’ve done so far I think we’ll be a team that as we progress in the season we’ll be ok.”
Philadelphia did well to battle back after losing a man early, but ultimately were done in by costly fouls. Toronto earned their first victory of the season, a much needed result to avoid dropping to 0-3-0. Philadelphia (1-2-0) will look to rebound against New York on April 24th, when the club will visit Red Bull Arena to kick off another East Coast rivalry.
TOR - Dwayne De Rosario (Free Kick) 35’
PHL- Jordan Harvey (Roger Torres, Sebastien Le Toux) 46’
TOR - Dwayne De Rosario (Penalty Kick) 81’
Philadelphia Union (1-2-0) -- Chris Seitz; Jordan Harvey, Danny Califf, Michael Orozco, Cristian Arrieta; Fred, Stefani Miglioranzi, Andrew Jacobson (Amobi Okugo 73’), Roger Torres (Shavar Thomas 56’), Alejandro Moreno, Sebastien Le Toux
Substitutes Not Used: Brian Perk, Kyle Nakazawa, Danny Mwanga, Jack McInerney, Nick Zimmerman
TOTAL SHOTS: 9 (Sebastien Le Toux 3); SHOTS ON GOAL: 6 (Sebastien Le Toux 2); FOULS: 8 ; OFFSIDES: 1; CORNER KICKS: 4 ; SAVES: 4 (Chris Seitz 4)
Toronto FC (1-2-0) –- Stefan Frei, Maksim Usanov (Barrett ’45), Raivis Hscanovics, Adrian Cann, Nana Attakora, Martin Saric (White 45’), Amadou Sanyang (Jacob Peterson 60’), Dan Gargan, Julian de Guzman, Nick LaBrocca, Dwayne De Rosario
Substitutes Not Used: Jon Conway, Nick Garcia, Ty Harden, Sam Cronin
TOTAL SHOTS: 14 (Dwayne De Rosario 5); SHOTS ON GOAL: 8 (Dwayne De Rosario 3); FOULS: 8 ; OFFSIDES: 4; CORNER KICKS: 6 ; SAVES: 3 (Stefan Frei 3)
TOR – Raivis Hscanovics 1 (caution; Reckless Tackle) 16’
TOR - Maksim Usanov 1 (caution; Reckless Foul) 25'
PHL - Danny Califf 1 (ejection; Violent Conduct) 34'
PHL - Stefani Miglioranzi 1 (caution; Reckless Foul) 37'
PHL - Shavar Thomas 1 (caution; Reckless Foul) 57’
Referee: Baldomero Toledo
Referee's Assistants: Joe Fletcher, Eric Boria
4th Official: Silviu Petrescu
Temperature: 59 and Partly Cloudy