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TFC 2012

Past to Present with Seattle

Sounders FC VS  Toronto FC

 

Past to Present

Since 2009 (when Seattle joined the MLS), Toronto FC’s record against the Sounders is:

1 W –  4 L  –  1 T

TFC have scored four goals in those six contests, all of them during the two matches played in the 2010 season. That includes the lone win, 2 – 0 at BMO Field.

Last season, TFC played Seattle twice before the big mid-summer shake-up. Both games were losses. TFC scored no goals.

Open Play

Despite the dreary numbers above, Saturday’s season opening match is not cause for despair. There are some positive angles on this information above.

First off, this specific Winter-chosen TFC team has never faced the Sounders in MLS competition. Secondly, Toronto FC have never had such a complete roster, in terms of balance, consistency and skill. Problems remain, to be sure, but the Reds have been playing much better football since the latter half of the 2011 season.

The Sounders are a solid team. Smartly selected and well-coached, Seattle is consistently at the top of MLS competition. At home, with large, vocal crowds behind them, they also are one of the toughest road visits in the league.

This week, however, Seattle may be their most vulnerable. They took a pounding, at altitude, in the CCL competition mid-week. They are returning home, in an introspective mood, hoping to shake off that huge defeat. Their faithful fans are expecting them to beat up Toronto FC as consolation.

The Reds, as visiting underdogs, again have nothing to lose. TFC will be fielding a team that has no collective memory of losing to the Sounders. They are coming off a euphoric win in LA on Wednesday. The Reds will need to make sure they don’t fall into an emotional trough in the shadow of that accomplishment.

As TFC should be no more tired than the Sounders, I’m looking back at their record since the middle of last season. As I noted in these columns last year, this particular TFC roster seemed to rise up for big away matches. While they didn’t win them all, they seemed – in my humble opinion – to play better on the road. This past week may have proved that point again.

Doubters Club

Many TFC fans, conditioned for disappointment, will be pessimistic about beating Seattle. The betting odds will further support that perspective. I think it’s a long shot to win on a visit to Seattle. That said, nobody was really picking TFC to beat the Galaxy this week. A draw, with a couple of goals scored, would rate nearly as high for me.

How giddy would we all be next week if our home season opened with a Toronto FC that was unbeaten in the first three real matches of 2012?

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