Friday, April 16, 2010

Union fall in Toronto

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.

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.

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.
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