The Toronto FC II played their third match in their history on Saturday afternoon in New Jersey while the New York Red Bulls were playing in their second looking for their first goal. The week prior TFCII looked in control in Montreal, even with a lineup that was missing core players in Christopher Mannella, Jordan Hamilton and Jay Chapman. This week they were back and available for the bright lights of Red Bull Arena. Would they be enough?
The back four starting lineup was the same and after it was all said and done, Jason Bent elected with the following 4-3-1-2 formation, mirroring the first team, using almost all of his available substitutions.
Goalkeeper: Alex Bono
Defense: Wesley Charpie (Marcus Godinho 82’), Daniel Fabrizi (Manuel Aparicio 64’),
Adam Bouchard, Mark Serjeant (Raheem Edwards 45’)
Midfield: Christopher Mannella, Marcos Nunes (Massimo Mirabelli 46’),
Jay Chapman, Luca Uccello
Forward: Jordan Hamilton, Molham Babouli (Mark Anthony Kaye 82’)
Substitutes Not Used: Quillan Roberts, Martin Davis
Right out of the gate, the Red Bulls II took control and dominated the first half. Anatole Abang scored almost immediately for New York in the seventh minute setting the tone. To make matters worse, Jordan Hamilton and Marcos Nunes are booked with two quick yellow cards in the 14th and 18th minutes respectively. Shawn McLaws sealed the victory just before the half-time break with a goal in the 39th minute.
The second half started off strong for TFCII as they took back control. Luca Uccello scored a goal which was a shot deflected off of fellow Canadian Karl Ouimette. With the momentum of play in favour of Toronto, and only a goal behind, a result for the Junior Reds felt like it was in reach. Unfortunately this wasn’t the case. First Captain Christopher Mannella fouled Anatole Abang in the box. Marius Obekop converted the penalty putting the match out of reach in the 74th minute. With only a few minutes remaining before the final whistle Leo Stolz padded the lead to make the score 4-1, completing the rout for New York Red Bulls II in their first USL win.
The only cure for a disappointing result is to play. The most unfortunate aspect of the loss was that they have two weeks to dwell on it. Their next match is on Sunday, April 19 at 6:00pm ET against Whitecaps FC 2. Similar to the match in Montreal, there will be that added amount of Canadian derby pressure. Will the junior Reds be able to dust themselves off on their only trip of the season out west? As the USL season continues, so does the excitement. You won’t want to miss Toronto FC II’s next match in Vancouver.