Round 16 continues in MLS; big opportunity in Toronto

0 Comments

Toronto FC actually put together some good moments a week back during Paul Mariner’s first game in charge. Seriously.

But there were also some pretty lousy moments, moments of grand inability or inattention, the kind that lead to goals and losses. And lose they did, 2-0 at Kansas City.

Things progressed in Mariner’s second match, at Houston, where the Canadians took an early two-goal lead.

So it may have been disappointing to concede two second-half goals and irresponsibly fumble away the opportunity to grab a huge road win. Still a draw on the road isn’t bad at all – especially for a team that just set a league record for losses to open a season.

Today in Toronto, Mariner makes his home debut as the boss of BMO Field. And what an opportunity awaits for the Reds as New England visits.

Jay Heaps’ Revolution has captured just three of a possible 21 points on the road this year (a 1-6-0 record). The team’s best player, do-all midfielder Shalrie Joseph, is out with an adductor strain.

Mariner’s team is thin along the back line, but the key men are otherwise intact. That includes striker Danny Koevermans, who is finding the goals now that he’s on a healthy run.

It’s probably too late for a legitimate run at the playoffs, so another year will come and go at Exhibition Place without any post-season soccer. Still, any success would be welcome, and the fans up there deserve some.

That makes today a big day at BMO. Tonight’s 5:30 p.m. ET match is the first of seven in MLS.