Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Escaping With A Draw

Toronto FC were strong against Santos Laguna in the first leg of their CONCACAF Champions League semifinal match, escaping with a respectable 1-1 draw.

Toronto FC were a bit unlucky not to get the second goal and take a victory down to Mexico. Santos went down to 10 men for the final quarter hour but Toronto FC were unable to take advantage.

Is this a great result for Toronto FC? Honestly, no. Toronto FC will need to win outright or draw by at least 2-2 in order to win the series. A 1-1 draw sends the match to extra time while a 0-0 draw or a Santos win eliminates Toronto FC.

Toronto FC now have one win and two draws from their CCL campaign while having just two bad losses to show for their league efforts.

What will make it complicated in the second leg will be the absence of Danny Koevermans. The Dutch striker was booked against Santos on Tuesday and will now serve a one-match suspension because of it. Pity, but Toronto FC have Ryan Johnson, Nick Soolsma and Luis Silva to pick up the slack. It's troubling but not disastrous.

I suppose down in the second leg that anything short of a 6-1 loss won't reflect too poorly within MLS. After all, one of the league's best sides fell by that much down in Torreon.

This team may not be a power but they also are survivors. Perhaps nobody outside their locker room believes in them, but that probably won't bother them much at all. That underdog mentality will only help the club down in Mexico, when nobody will give them a chance to do anything against Santos Laguna.

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