Result and details of the Wednesday August 24, 2016 USL game between Toronto FC II and New York Red Bulls II
played at the Ontario Soccer Centre in Vaughan at 5:00pm.
62 min…NYRB Junior Flemmings GOAL…NYRB Tyler Adams sends in high cornerkick from left that NYRB Zachary Carroll
at 7 yards on right pops header across box and Flemmings turns away from net to get foot to knock it down.
NYRB Florian Valot takes low 8 yard shot from left that sprawling goalie Nathan Ingham stops. NYRB Brandon Allen while
being grabbed by TFC Marko Maletic shoots from 4 yards that deflects off prone goalie. Flemmings slides to get to 5 yard
rebound down middle and shoots high to right side of net between three defenders on goalline.
Final Score:…..Toronto FC II………..0…………..New York Red Bulls II……..1…..
Attendance started off with a few hundred and climbed to maybe 700 by halftime. (no announcement was made at the game
but USL lists 1081 but I doubt that many showed up—burning off a $5.00 ticket is still worth buying season tickets).
The early start is partially to blame although it would have been a gamble to have it at 7:30pm as that was the time that the
MLS team played an away game against Orlando City so a lot of people would have stayed home. This is certainly better than
last year as some of their games were within hours of the MLS team playing a HOME game in downtown Toronto and very
difficult to get here in time.
Referee Justin Tasev gave out three Yellow cards that I counted—all to TFC II players. He called a water break at 32 minutes
as this was a hot and humid day and a blinding sun in the north west stayed out from 30 minutes until the end of the game.
NYRB dominated the game overall but that didn’t necessarily mean they’d win it as because they couldn’t put the game away,
TFC had a chance right to the final kick. NYRB had their first shot at 14 seconds and continued to pressure from there!
They ground down TFC for the last 20 minutes and left TFC with very few opportunities near the end.
Ryan Meara earned the shutout for NYRB. He was once their MLS team’s goalie in 2012 but a series of injuries and the play
of Luis Robles who played all 34 league games three years in a row and is doing the same in 2016 has kept him out of their lineup.
He had a few key saves to make but was well protected by the defence. Nathan Ingram was the goalie for TFC. He had much
more work to do and along with his saves and inaccurate off target finishing by NYRB he kept TFC in the game until the end
instead of down three goals in the first half.
Best non-scoring chances were at 27 minutes when TFC Mo Babouli took a low 22 yard pass up the middle that was off the
left post. TFC Shaan Hundal rolled the rebound from 12 yards wide right on a deflection. First half injury time had
NYRB Derrick Etienne elude a defender’s slide and get away an 18 yard shot up the middle that hit the bar. 56 minutes
had NYRB Brandon Allen cut to the middle and roll a 20 yard shot that the goalie dove and pushed wide left of the post.
61 minutes had NYRB Junior Flemmings pass to NYRB Florian Valot who tapped to NYRB Brandon Allen who rolled
an 18 yard shot past the goalie but TFC Marko Maletic did the splits at 3 yards to get a foot to and tip it wide left of the post.
The resulting cornerkick created the only goal. 68 minutes had NYRB Flemmings roll a pass forward and right
to NYRB Valot who shot a low 12 yarder that the goalie goalie deflected wide right. The next minute had
NYRB Stefano Bonorro tap a centering pass from the right and Flemmings rolled an 8 yard shot down the middle
wide left of the post. Second half injury time had the TFC goalie caught out of goal at 35 yards and NYRB Devon Williams
shot low from 30 yards to an open net that was stopped by a retreating TFC Adam Bouchard with a slide at 2 yards
to keep it out of the net.
NYRB II were the first Eastern Conference team to clinch a playoff spot and they did that on the weekend. There was
no let up as now they want to hold on to first so they can host their playoff games right through the process. I’ve heard
the playoffs are one game series at the team with the better record so IF TFC II were able to squeeze in to that eighth
place spot they would probably play NYRB in New York.
The playoffs look dim as TFC’s record is now 6 wins, 15 losses, 5 ties for 23 points in 26 games with only four games
to go. Orlando City B holds the eighth spot with a record of 8 wins, 8 losses, 8 ties for 32 points. That means OC hold
two games in hand as do the teams TFC are chasing.
I certainly bought in to the team execs plan that TFC II is a development team to nurture players for their MLS team
but skeptics can point to first place NYRB II and Orlando City B (who are in their first year of playing) and say
“Why can’t we do both?”.
As one of the first 100 fans through the gates (actually they said I was first) I received a TFC II t-shirt. It’s all red which
will be a match for last year’s all white one. There were supposed to be ten that were player autographed and I saw
a girl wear one later covered in Sharpie marker signatures but if I’d have gotten it I wouldn’t be able to wear it, instead
it would have become a souvenir.
TFC II next game is Sunday August 28 at Ontario Soccer Centre at 4:00pm against FC Montreal—a day after the
MLS team meets Montreal Impact at BMO Field. FCM was the league’s worst team but have won their last three
in a row to pull out of last place.