Two Canadian teams were eliminated from the MLS is Back tournament this Sunday evening. Toronto FC lost to New York City, while Sporting Kansas City sent Vancouver Whitecaps home following a penalty shootout.
Toronto was considered a favorite against NY City, which is why it can be said that their loss is a massive sensation. The way the game started indicated a possible surprise, as City got the lead after just five minutes.
It was Jesus Medina who drew the first blood, using the poor reaction of Toronto’s defense after one free-kick. The ball was sent to the box, but after a clearance, it reached Anton Tinnerholm, who used the confusion in rival’s back line to find Medina, who scored from a nearby. That was the only hit of the first halftime.
Toronto looked for a way to respond, but without success, and their morale was heavily damaged ten minutes into the second sequence, once Valentin Castellanos doubled the lead for the Citizens.
The man of the match, Maxi Morales, made a superb assist towards Castellanos who would find himself in an excellent position, not missing a chance to beat Toronto’s goalie, Westberg.
Morales would, later on, put his name on the scoresheet. Nine minutes before the end, the best player on the pitch sealed Toronto’s destiny, sending his crew to the top eight of the tournament. Just to remind you, NYCFC advanced to the knockout stage as the last-placed among the third-placed teams, because LA Galaxy equalized against Houston Dynamo in the last minute of the game.
They are now finding themselves against the better from Portland Timbers vs Cincinnati FC. The Citizens will play that match on August 1. Patrick Mullins delivered the only goal for Toronto three minutes before the final whistle.
In the other match of the night, Sporting Kansas City went through a drama to eliminate Vancouver Whitecaps. SKC had 36 goal attempts, compared to Whitecaps’ 8, but when looking at the shots on gals, SKC had 8 while the Canadians stood at 5.
Thomas Hasal, Vancouver’s goalkeeper, saved his team on several occasions and was excellent during the entire match. Still, that wasn’t enough for the Canadians to get away with a win.
Sporting KC will meet Philadelphia Union on Thursday. Union was better than the New England Revolution in their round of 16 matchup.