The South Stand Report : Toronto v Houston

Houston Dynamo as the Hurricaine

The Part I Write Before The Match :

I’m feeling much better about going into this match than the last one. All those fears were unfounded. Man, that was embarassing.

This match, we have to deal with Houston, who are shooting out the lights… when they’re at home and on the road haven’t earned a point yet. There’s a plus. Toronto are coming off the best performance of 2017 thus far, Giovinco nearly bagged a handful, and then was subbed off a bit too early in my humble opinion.

And even though he won’t be playing, Drew Moor has had his ticker mended and should be back into the first team in a few weeks. That’s a player I’ve missed.

Bold Predictions :

  1. Torres will bag a goal
  2. Vazquez will not get to take a free kick
  3. Toronto scores at least three goals

On to the Match :

16’ – GOAL – Edwards takes a ball from 20 yards out onto the wing from Delgado, slots a pretty low cross into the box, Altidore side foot it, keep gets a piece but not enough.

28’ – Vazquez takes a ball, loops it over his marker and pops it through to Giovinco who almost was in on goal but the keeper got to it first.

30’ – Houston counterattack with Torres on the ball crosses it for Alex but Zavaleta gets ahead of him, however it rolls to another forward and Bono comes to the rescue.

32’ – GOAL – Altidore takes the ball at the top of the box, lays it back for Seba for a give and go, Altidore takes it and buries it.

41’ – Giovinco has a go from 15 yards out and the Houston keeper makes a great stop redirecting the ball onto the post. Ugh.

43’ – Vazquez takes a free kick! It was good given the terrible location. Hopefully he’ll graduate to free kicks within 30 yards of goal.

48’ – Giovinco gets a shot low and to the left forcing another diving save from the Houston keeper.

51’ – Did… Did Vazquez just wave Giovinco away from a corner?

67’ – Giovinco free kick from 20 yards out beats the wall and forces another diving save from the Houston keeper.

70’ – SUB – Osorio on for Delgado

74’ – Houston ball from the left side finds the head of Torres but it was saved by Bono

75’ – SUB – Cooper on for Vazquez

79’ – SUB – Ricketts on for Altidore

4 minutes of extra time

90 + 2’ – Ricketts gets on a long ball and is racing down the wings. To control it the defender catches up, brings it inside but takes a touch too many and instead of laying it off, he loses it just inside the box.

90+4’ – low shot from 20 yards out gobbled up by Bono.

Full Time : Toronto 2, Houston 0

Man of the Match : Altidore was brilliant

Goat of the Game : Wasn’t enamoured by Bradley’s play, but far from goat-worthy.

Ref Rating : 4 out of 5. Let them play, not a lot of bookings or interference.

I Am Not The Gaffer, But… : Well played Mr. Vanney. Spot on. Struggled with why taking someone off more than anything

In Case You PVR’d It : see the goals and the near goals. Solid game. Totally worth watching.

Bold Predictions Results :

  1. Failed it. Disappointed in Cubo for the sake of this bit, but happy because clean sheet.
  2. Failed it. It was in a difficult position but Vazquez did well.
  3. Failed it. So close.

Cooper’s first two touches made me sad… Houston tried to unleash an attack, tried so hard, but little got through and Bono did what he had to. Deserved the clean sheet… Did anyone else get the Soccer United Fan Council thingie about pre-game stuff? I made sure to openly state my distaste for the MLS “anthem” and the lack of necessity of the national anthem pre-game. I’m sure it’ll get put in the delete folder… I blame Steve (@_sgennaro) for re-thinking how I view Delgado. He had an excellent game tonight. Also, every time he touched the ball, I heard the words “carries the water” and “engine” over and over again (see podcast Episode 184 for context) so thank you and sorry… Houston keeper Willis had Giovinco’s number all night. Must’ve made at least four quality saves against him, denying him his glories…

Player Ratings : Bono 6.5, Zavaleta 6.5, Hagglund 6, Morrow 6, Beitashour 6.5, Edwards 7, Bradley 5.5, Delgado 7 (Osorio N/A), Vazquez 7 (Cooper N/A), Altidore 8 (Ricketts N/A), Giovinco 6.5

Unused Substitutions : Pais, Cheyrou, Endoh, Chapman

Author: Mark Hinkley

Mark is a full-time graphic designer, full-time smart ass and full-time logo, stadium and kit nerd. When he isn't writing ridiculous match reports or redesigning logos for his own amusement, he's salivating over the day that promotion and relegation occurs in MLS. You can follow him @kitnerdmark on the twitterz.

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  1. Edwards is really starting to shine on this team. He’s pretty fearless and I can’t remember how many times he beat his defender last light. Every time it looked like he didn’t have an open man to pass too, he just decided to spin around the other way and run right past the defender! And it usually worked!

    Altidore’s ball control and finish on his second goal was a thing of beauty as well.

    Exciting match!

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  2. UN-SUNDERLAND Altidore! With apologies to the the east shores of Lake Taronto (Simcoe).

    The second goal was one of the prettiest plays I have seen and showed a sudden skill difference between the the two teams. It also seems that all offensive plays for the Reds now has to pass through Raheem Edwards street.

    Too bad Giovinco and TFC could not find the same success in the second half.

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  3. Brave of you to post your predictions; I like it. For a change, I agree with most of your player ratings, the exception being Hagglund; he deserves to lose at least a half if not a full point because of that shocking give-away with about 5′ left in the game. It’s one thing for MB4 to do the same thing early in the game, because if it results in a goal against we can come back. But to surrender a goal at the end of the game would be so old-school TFC 🙁 Hagglund was no doubt tired at that point, which might explain it; but in that case, he should have just pounded the ball down field and out of bounds.

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