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    Duane Rollins
    Canada will be anticipating the El Salvador clash to be something momentous on the line as Benito’s squad looks to secure its spot in the final round of the World Cup qualifiers in the CONCACAF area also known as the Hexagonal. Prior to the September 6th home game, Les Rouges must come with a win from a tough trip to the Honduras on Friday, September 2nd.
    Addressing the CSA press conference in downtown Vancouver on Friday morning, Benito not only talked about the hilarious support his team received during the Mexico and Honduras qualifiers but also the environmental factors as reasons for playing the Group A schedule at the BC Place.
    We decided to continue playing in Vancouver since firstly when we were victorious against Honduras; we got tremendous support from our fans. It also started to nature an excellent feeling about the team and the fans, Floro commented. We faced off with Mexico, and the stadium was full. That support was imperative for us as they were helping us in that match as well.
    We require two things to resonate this support and also the continuous adoption of our game in this special stadium which is vital for us. I love the BMO Field in Toronto however; sometimes it’s very windy thus making it very hard to play. Our players are not well exposed to such conditions. Hence, they lack the experience of playing in windy conditions. Therefore, it is crucial for us to play in Vancouver since the stadium is covered.
    Despite the majority ratifying that Vancouver has earned the right of hosting the El Salvador qualifier, there are complaints from the media and fans alike that other Canadian markets are being alienated when it comes to hosting men’s national team games.
    Like Benito, the CSA president Victor Montagliani is keen to ensure that Canada’s national team appears in all the stadium across the country, whether it’s friendly matches or the World Cup qualifiers in the Hexagonal in the near future.
    “You have to view it in two ways, from both a qualifying and a friendly point of view,” Montagliani said. We are considering to increase playing more friendlies on FIFA dates here in Canada since I am of the opinion that it’s paramount for our fans to witness our men’s national team as they have our women’s national team. Logistically, it is harder to get the full men’s national team together since all the players are internationally based. However, I think it is incumbent for us as we move on to play in all the venues across Canada from a friendly point of view.
    When it comes to qualifying for the World Cup, it is not about sharing the love but about the home victory. If the technical staff believes that a certain Canadian marketplace is suitable for the match, then that’s where we will probably go.
    Paid content

    All eyes will be on Sebastian Giovinco Saturday. With six goals already this season, the diminutive Italian will enter TFC history books if he finds the net against Dallas. Currently tied with Dwayne De Rosario on 28 goals, he has the chance to become the club’s all-time record scorer in MLS play.
    The odds are in his favour as no team has conceded more goals in MLS this year than Dallas (17). After a hot start to the season, the Western Conference side come into this game on the back of 3-0 and 4-0 defeats to Vancouver and New York Red Bulls. Despite the offensive funk, Dallas (5-3-2) sit tied second for goals scored (15) though have played two games more than their Canadian opponents.
    Playmaker Mauro Diaz returned to Dallas’ starting line-up last weekend after missing a month through injury. His return enabled coach Oscar Pareja to return to a 4-2-3-1 formation that sees Diaz play centrally, flanked by pacey Columbian duo Fabian Castillo and Michael Barrios.
    The matchup will be a stern test for TFC, who have been defensively disciplined on the road. With just seven goals given up through eight games, Toronto have the tightest backline across the league outright.
    Greg Vanney’s other main concern going into Saturday’s game is his teams lack of clinical instincts in the opposition penalty box. Several spurned opportunities in the 2-1 defeat to Portland last time out means only Seattle (8), Columbus (7) and Chicago (7) have scored less goals than TFC (9).
    Jonathan Osorio hopes to recover from the ankle sprain that kept him out of the game against the Timbers. If so, Vanney will likely sub him in for Tsubasa Endoh. Otherwise, the team is expected to be unchanged. Benoit Cheyrou is still a couple of weeks away from a return to action.
    FC Dallas secured a 3-2 victory when the teams met last year and haven’t lost to Toronto in MLS play since 2007. Saturday’s game at BMO will be the first of a four-game home stand for TFC, where they will hope to back up performances to date and potentially top the Eastern conference by the end of May.
    Projected Line-ups
    Toronto: C.Irwin, D.Moor, D.Perquis, S.Beitashour, J.Morrow, M.Delgado, M.Bradley, W.Johnson, J.Osorio, S.Giovinco, J.Altidore
    FC Dallas: J.Gonzalez, R.Hollingshead, M.Figueroa, Z.Loyd, A.Harris, V.Ulloa, C.Gruezo, F.Castillo, M.Diaz, M.Barrios, M.Urruti
    Referee: Jorge Gonzalez
    Broadcast: TSN4
    Follow Ciarán @keep_score


    Introducing Soccer Today!

    By Guest, in 24th Minute,

    MLS,EPL, La Liga, Ligue 1, Serie A, Champions League, Euros, World Cup and many more!
    Hosted by Duane Rollins and Kevin Laramee
    STUDIO LINE 929-477-3874

    Michael Mccoll
    REPORT (by Steve Pandher):
    A strong start wasn't enough for the Whitecaps to get the full three points and in the end a short-handed Vancouver side had to hold on to a 1-1 draw against Sporting Kansas City at BC Place on Wednesday night.
    It was a tale of two debut MLS goals, with Christian Bolaños scoring his first as a Cap, while Diego Rubio replied for the visitors.
    The home side looked to open the scoring early when Masato Kudo almost converted a Cristian Techera cross, with the ball being slightly deflected by Matt Besler away from the striker.
    Ten minutes later the Whitecaps would strike first off a set piece as Techera's corner found an open Bolaños who side-volleyed his shot past the keeper.
    That lead didn't last long as Sporting drew even before the half hour mark when Rubio collected a shot/pass from Lawrence Olum and beat David Ousted from in close.
    Kansas City almost took the lead only a few minutes later after a poor giveaway by Matias Laba led to an attempt by Olum that was stopped by Ousted and then cleared off the line by Tim Parker before Rubio could get to it.
    Kudo got another chance moments later but once again Besler was able to get a foot in and deny the pass from Techera.
    The second half couldn't have started any worse for the Whitecaps, with Kendall Waston getting sent off for a second yellow card in the 51st minute, after a poor back pass from Parker forced the Costa Rican to go in for an awkward challenge that was penalized by the referee.
    The remainder of the match saw Sporting Kansas City control the majority of play and look dangerous, but they were unable to create any clear chances and both clubs ended up splitting the points.
    Vancouver will only have a few days to regroup with a long trip to the east coast coming up and a match against New York City FC on Saturday.
    FINAL SCORE: Vancouver Whitecaps 1 – 1 Sporting Kansas City
    ATT: 18,836
    VANCOUVER: David Ousted; Fraser Aird, Kendall Waston, Tim Parker, Jordan Harvey; Matías Laba, Russell Teibert; Christian Bolaños (Kekuta Manneh 78), Pedro Morales (Pa-Modou Kah 54), Cristian Techera; Masato Kudo (Octavio Rivero 65) [substitutes not used: Paolo Tornaghi, Nicolás Mezquida, Andrew Jacobson, Blas Pérez]
    KANSAS CITY: Alec Kann; Saad Abdul Salaam, Nuno Andre Coelho, Matt Besler, Amadou Dia; Benny Feilhaber, Lawrence Olum, Roger Espinoza; Jimmy Medranda (Graham Zusi 75), Diego Rubio (Dom Dwyer 57), Connor Hallisey (Brad Davis 64) [substitutes not used: Tim Melia, Ike Opara, Seth Sinovic, Jacob Peterson]
    On points won or lost:
    “I’m not sure. I just said that to the guys in there, I’m not sure whether to be happy, to be sad, to be frustrated, annoyed. You know I thought we played very very well in the first half. I thought we played some of our [most] exciting stuff as we have done. We got our noses in front. Credit to them. They got back in the game, but that shouldn’t happen from us. We switched off the second phase. When you do that against good teams you get caught. It was pleasing but disappointing in the first half. Second half is just a catalogue of errors from us. We.ve got to make sure that we don’t to that too many times, because three times in nine games we’ve played with 10 men. We haven’t conceded a goal, which is good. So the character shown towards the end of the game is phenomenal from that group in there, especially when their backs are against the wall. So, pleased from me in that respect, but we’ll brush ourselves down again and we’ll go on a nice long trip tomorrow.”
    On the two yellow cards on Kendall:
    “I’ve got no complaints about the second yellow card. I think it’s a poor decision, not just by Kendall, but from a number of players that were made. I just got told the first card is not a yellow card. So that’s a frustrating thing for me. But there was a number of frustrating things, because there was tackles that were missed, and there was a hand ball on the floor when my guy’s breaking through, which was missed. And I tried to ask the referee at the end of the game, but he didn’t want to shake my hand. So, that might tell you something.”
    On team discipline and inability to field a steady line-up:
    “That’s a frustrating thing. You want to try to get into a rhythm and a groove, and we’re nine games in and we haven’t able to field a settled team. Is it the discipline? I think you look across the league generally, which I do because you’ve got to review games and look at games, but all you can do is focus on yourself. Do my team need to be better, do we need to be better? Yeah, ok, I’ll accept that. But if the sending off today has been caused by a yellow card, which was deservedly so, and a non-yellow card, then I think I can’t really criticise their discipline. If it’s a blatant red card, then by all means. You know we had one of them in Kansas City away, I think it was a red card. I’ll accept that and I’ll take the blame for that.”
    On his goal:
    “Even me, I was surprised. It was difficult but I just tried to shoot in the goal. I was lucky to put the ball just in the corner and very happy for make my first goal.”
    On getting into the starting line-up at home:
    “I told another reporter when the national anthem was playing before the game, what was going through my mind was my first game at Empire Stadium and you know you get goosebumps on your body thinking about it. But I remember just the sound of the fans on the opening day and you know it kind of felt like opening day all over again for me just because I’d been out for a little while. It’ll always be a pleasure to play in front of the home fans whether it was at Empire or at BC Place today. It’ll always feel special.”
    On whether it was points lost or won:
    “We got down to 10 men, but again we’ve shown in the past, I think we’ve been down to 10 men three times this year and we can still play when we’re down a man. I think the game was there for us in the first half, maybe we should’ve capitalized on a couple of chances. You know we did have a couple times where we lacked focus but that’s the way the game goes. I think after we go down to 10 men we showed a lot of character to not get scored on and to finish the game and get a point out of it. But with that we still looked dangerous and we still had a couple chances and we could’ve capitalized on it and took three points in there.”
    On tonight’s match:
    “We were a little bit beat up from our game on Sunday, we were depleted. It was a hot day, we weren’t used to it. It’s not very hot in Kansas City at the moment so we haven’t really had a chance to acclimate to it. I actually thought we brought pretty good energy playing away from home. Getting a point, yeah it’s ok, but whenever you go up a man you always want more. I thought we actually got a couple opportunities here and there but they did a good job, they were really compact in the middle and also compact in their two lines. They made it really difficult for us to go up through the middle. Everything was wide and that made it difficult. Any time you go on the road in this league and get a point, it’s a pretty good thing.”
    On not creating more chances after Zusi and Davis subbed on:
    “Sometimes the rhythm, it’s hard for them, they come in late and they’re not in the rhythm of the game. It would be nice for them to have a little more but like I said, many times as a player and as a coach, you’re in a situation where you’re playing up a man and you are playing against a team that is extremely galvanized in their way that they’re now going to defend the game, and so there’s not a lot of space. It’s difficult to break a team down. Probably the one thing that we weren’t good at it, was when they surged forward, we needed to get at them a little bit quicker so that they couldn’t get behind the ball. Outside of that, everything else is what it is.”
    Thoughts on Rubio’s performance:
    “He’s played a couple of games now, he was pressing way too hard to score, it’s what he wanted to do so bad, and I thought it took him out of his game and I had a long talk with him and I just said ‘listen, you’ve got a lot of other things that you bring to our team, and when you get your chance it will come, you don’t have to force it.’ I thought today, he did a lot of other things for us in the game outside of scoring, but I also think it was good for his confidence to put one in the back of the net. And for any goalscorer that’s an important aspect.”
    On goalkeeper Alec Cann:
    “It was an important move for us to give him a shot to play because we had two more competitions we’re going to have to play in with the U.S. Open Cup and also Champions League in the summer time. So we’ve really got to rely on both keepers and we really haven’t had a chance to play him play him yet in a game with us, so I thought he did a good job. There’s nothing he could have done about the first goal, it was a great finish. Bad marking on our part but tremendous finish. It wasn’t his fault. Outside of that I thought he managed the game real well.”
    On tonight’s match:
    “It’s good to battle back and get a point away from home. I’m proud of the guys and the way they fought the whole game.”
    On having a man advantage for 40 minutes:
    “You can’t be too disappointed with a point away from home no matter what the circumstances. We would have obviously loved to get three to take back to Kansas City, but a point is very important, especially at this point in the season.”
    On upcoming game against LA Galaxy:
    “Just keep training hard. We have a quick turnaround, so just rest the legs and be ready for Sunday.”
    On tonight’s match:
    “Everybody told me that it is always difficult to play here in Vancouver. Of course they were playing with 10 players for I think 30 minutes, so of course we are supposed to win. I think we made the effort, but that happens in football. They tried to defend the last 30 minutes and they did a good job.”
    On coming away with a draw:
    “Of course we are disappointed, we always want to win. This team always works to win so of course we are disappointed in a draw.”


    Almost Home

    By Guest, in 24th Minute,

    The Reds smashed through the early season eight-point target set by club President Bill Manning with a convincing 2-0 victory in Montreal last week. The derby-day performance took TFC to 11 points and has people talking them up as 2016 contenders.
    In Sunday’s game at Providence Park (4:00 p.m. ET) coach Greg Vanney will have to tinker with the line-up that so successfully stymied the Impact’s early season form. A 4-4-2 diamond formation saw Jonathan Osorio flourish at the tip and another standout performance from captain Michael Bradley at the base. With Osorio not travelling to Portland after rolling an ankle in training this week, Vanney may move Marky Delgado further forward and draft in Danny Lovitz. Tsubasa Endosh and Mo Babouli are also options. Benoit Cheyrou remains sidelined.
    The New England Revolution equalized late on to deny the Timbers (2-3-3) maximum points Wednesday night, with the Pacific Coasters enduring a stuttering start to their title defence. Only New York Red Bulls have conceded more goals to date than Caleb Porter’s side, while Toronto have the tightest backline across the league. The Reds limited a Didier Drogba-led Montreal team to just two shots on target at Stade Suputo and have given up just five goals in seven games.
    Portland’s lineup has seen substantial variation in recent weeks, with suspensions, fresh injuries as well as key players returning from layoffs. Stopper Adam Kwarasey is still out but Darlington Nagbe returned to the side that drew with New England and Darren Mattocks recovered from concussion to make a substitute appearance. Club captain Liam Ridgewell is back in training but is uncertain for Sunday.
    Will Johnson will return to Portland for the first time since the 29-year-old was traded to Toronto in December. The midfielder spent two years on the West Coast, scoring 15 goals.
    Toronto came out 1-0 victors in the only match-up between the sides last year but lost 4-0 the last time they played at Providence Park way back in 2013. After the trip to Portland, Toronto begin a four-game home stand, welcoming MLS pacesetters FC Dallas to BMO Field on May 7.
    Sidenote: Supporters of Toronto can be forgiven for treating the appointment of Baldomero Toledo to referee Sunday’s game with some trepidation after the official decided not to call a foul on Justin Morrow in the lead up to the Brad Davis’ winning goal for Sporting Kansas City when the sides met in March.
    Projected Line-ups
    Toronto: C.Irwin, D.Moor, D.Perquis, S.Beitashour, J.Morrow, M.Delgado, M.Bradley, W.Johnson, J.Osorio, S.Giovinco, J.Altidore
    Portland Timbers: J.Gleeson, Z.Valetin, N.Borchers, J.Taylor, C.Klute, D.Chara, J.Jewsbury, L.Melano, D.Nagbe, F.Adi, J.McInerney
    Referee: Baldomero Toledo
    Broadcast: ESPN, TSN2

    Michael Mccoll
    Montreal's Maxim Tissot saw his first minutes of the year, coming on as a first half time sub, just 20 minutes in, during the Impact's loss to TFC. Russell Teibert made a massive two minute appearance for Vancouver, but that was "bettered" by Toronto's Mo Babouli who managed one whole minute!
    The weekend's full contributions by Canadians reads as follows.

    Orlando's two goals in their 3-2 loss in New York both came courtesy of Canadian players. One from each team! Cyle Larin opened the scoring just three minutes in, before the Red Bulls hit back with three unanswered goals. Karl Ouimette brought the game back to within one again when he turned the ball into his own net with six minutes remaining.
    You can watch both below.

    Ouimette shouldn't even have been on the pitch for that goal to happen after being involved in the game's most controversial moment when he brought down Larin in the 63rd minute, as his Canadian teammate raced in on goal. The tackle was just outside of the box, but referee Hilario Grajeda didn't even give the foul, allowing Ouimette to dodge a bullet and a red card. New York then scored the equalising goal two minutes later and they didn't look back after that.
    Judge for yourself the merits of that missed call.

    Will Johnson got his second assist of the season on Sebastian Giovinco's second goal for TFC in Montreal.
    In the updated season so far standings, Vancouver's Fraser Aird continues to lead the way in appearances and overall minutes played, making his seventh start and eighth appearance of the year in the 'Caps 3-0 win against Dallas and taking his minutes for the season to 668.
    Cyle Larin leads Canadians in MLS with four goals so far this season, while Dallas' Tesho Akindele and Toronto's Will Johnson lead the way with two assists each. Larin also leads the Canadian players in both shots (16) and shots on goal (9).
    Here's the full 'Canadians In MLS' totals after week eight.

    Michael Mccoll
    There's a lot of chat to be had, so have a listen!
    You can download and/or listen to this, and all previous, episodes of the podcast on the following services:
    iPhone App
    Google Play
    Stitcher Radio Network.
    Or after all that, you could just listen on the player below!

    Michael Mccoll
    REPORT (by Steve Pandher):
    The Whitecaps ended their three game winless and 372 minute goalless streaks with a 3-0 victory over league leading FC Dallas. After a Maynor Figueroa own goal gave Vancouver the lead in the first half, the 'Caps got goals from Jordan Harvey and Kekuta Manneh, the latter being their first that a Whitecaps players has scored from open play this season.
    However it was a different story to start the match, with the visitors controlling the majority of play and chances, either missing them by the slightest of margins or being robbed by the outstanding play of David Ousted who earned the cleansheet with another 'man of the match' performance.
    Five minutes after Ousted's first big save of the night, a stunning acrobatic tip over of a looping Maxi Urruti effort, the Whitecaps got on the board when Manneh sent in the ball from the left side of the box which Chris Seitz punched out. (Un)fortunately it was sent right into the path of a retreating Figueroa who had the ball come off his chest into the net giving the 'Caps the lead into the half.
    Minutes after the restart, Dallas came close to drawing even but Ousted came up huge with a reflex save from a shot by Michael Barrios from just inside the six yard area.
    After another big stop by Ousted after the hour mark, the home side doubled their lead in the 63rd minute when Jordan Harvey collected the ball from a corner and fired it past defenders and the keeper to get his second of the season.
    Vancouver would put the match to bed 15 minutes later when Manneh would be sent in alone by second half sub Blas Perez's first touch of the match. The winger beat the charging Seitz to the ball and slipped it past him for his first of the season.
    The Whitecaps will have little time to savour the victory as they return to B.C Place on Wednesday to face Sporting Kansas City, but it will do wonders for their confidence and self belief moving forward in a stretch of four home matches in a five game spell.
    FINAL SCORE: Vancouver Whitecaps 3 - 0 FC Dallas
    ATT: 22,120 (sell out)
    VANCOUVER: David Ousted; Fraser Aird, Kendall Waston, Tim Parker, Jordan Harvey; Matias Laba, Andrew Jacobson, Cristian Techera (Christian Bolanos 80), Nicolas Mezquida (Russell Teibert 88), Kekuta Manneh; Octavio Rivero (Blas Perez 77) [subs Not Used: Paolo Tornaghi, Sam Adekugbe, Pa-Modou Kah, Masato Kudo]
    DALLAS: Chris Seitz; Atiba Harris, Zach Loyd, Walker Zimmerman, Maynor Figueroa; Michael Barrios (Kellyn Acosta 74), Victor Ulloa (Mauro Díaz 71), Carlos Gruezo, Fabian Castillo; Maximiliano Urruti, Tesho Akindele [subs Not Used: Jesse Gonzalez, Ryan Hollingshead, Juan Esteban Ortiz, Carlos Lizarazo, Mauro Rosales]
    On tonight’s match:
    “We scored one goal from open play today, so I’m delighted. We win a game of football. I say this and don’t make a big thing of it. It’s about winning games and I know that, I understand that. We won the game today with a little bit of luck, which we haven’t had in one or two weeks. A good set piece goal and then a fantastic Blas Perez touch and Kekuta Manneh on the run. It’s nice, we’ll take it, but we’ll move on. It’s three points, we’ll move on, we’ve got a big game on Wednesday.”
    On the team’s improvement:
    “It doesn’t help and make it easier, when you’re not scoring as many goals as you’d like, but you go through ruts, as a group of players, as a club. Sometimes it goes against you and doesn’t go your way, but you focus on performance. We did that last week. We were well below our standard at DC United and I was the first to admit that and take responsibility for that. Last week, we were a lot better. I think we should have gotten something out of the game and we didn’t. Again, no excuses. Today, we rode our luck a little bit, but they’re a good team. They’ve got good players, but today we showed that we are.”
    On David Ousted’s crucial performance:
    “You know, I think his job is to keep the ball out of the net. So, he did what he’s paid for. He did his job very well today. As did Kendall [Waston] and Tim [Parker], and the two fullbacks. We’re playing against three or four top players in the league today. But, the one save is phenomenal. I’ll let him talk about it because I’m sure he’ll be up here or whatever. So, excellent save, but he did his job, which is good.”
    On the difference for Kekuta Manneh and Cristian Techera tonight:
    “A little bit of confidence, I think we’re getting up to the levels that we know we can play. They both probably should have scored at certain times. Kekuta gets his goal. Cristian, if the dink goes in, the little lob, then everyone is raving about it. You know, we haven’t scored as many goals as we’d like and I keep getting reminded of that. We’ve got to just keep going, the wide players, the forward players, they’ve just got to keep going and the goals will come.”
    On whether he was happy that it was Kekuta Manneh who got the goal at the end:
    “To be fair, I don’t really care who scores from open play. Individually, I think they all want to score, which is good. I think the two or three times that we made the wrong decisions at the wrong time, it was because they want the goal. For him, I think his confidence will grow from that in an important week for us. The other guys should be proud of their work rate as well. Cristian Techera, obviously Octavio Rivero and Nicolas Mezquida as well. I thought he put in a very, very strong performance.”
    Thoughts on Matias Laba’s performance:
    “Matias is a top player, we know that. I think sometimes, when he doesn’t play to the level that we used to see in him, everyone sort of jumps on the bandwagon with him. Players don’t go out there to play poorly, they go out there to give their effort and try their very best. And sometimes it’s your day, other times it isn’t. I’m happy with the group of players I have in there on a daily basis.”
    On whether we saw glimpses of last season in tonight’s performance:
    “Yeah, maybe. I’ll have to see it again. I’m pleased from today because Dallas are a good team. They come into our place, they’ve scored a lot of goals. I kept getting reminded of that this week that they are the highest scoring team and deservedly so. I’m pleased that we kept a clean sheet and that’s why I said I’ll take one goal and a clean sheet. Houston came into town a couple of weeks ago, when we were missing a couple players and we kept them quiet as well. So we can do it, we just got to do it more consistently than we have in the first seven or eight games.”
    On whether we should expect to see Pedro Morales soon:
    “I think there’s a good chance, yeah. Pedro wanted to play today. I thought the guys who played in Salt Lake played very, very well, without any luck. So there is a chance, yeah. Obviously, there will be some new faces on the team on Wednesday. We have a busy week ahead of us. It’ll give us confidence, the three points, but we’ll just chalk it down and move on to the next one. Hopefully, you, we, me will get to see him on Wednesday.”
    On the importance of tonight’s win:
    “We had a few bad results in the running and we got together and met, and we decided that we need to change things around if we want to have a good season. That happens to teams, they go through bad runs but then they turn things around. We felt like this was our chance, FC Dallas is a good team but they’re going to let us play and if we get chances, we’ll take them. I thought we did that today and this is very exciting, we needed that win.”
    On the attack breaking through tonight:
    “For us, we just kept believing. We were creating chances, and if we were not creating chances, we’d be worried but we created a lot, it felt like. The week before that, we knew that it was just going to be a matter of time before we start putting them away. It finally happened today, I’m really excited, and hopefully we can continue that with the game on Wednesday.”
    On his performance tonight:
    “I thought I played well today. There were times today that I had to step up and make that save. I’m happy with my performance today.”
    On how the team responded:
    “I’ve said in the past few weeks that we were just going through a rough patch and that’s when the leaders of this team step up. It’s when the veterans of this team take responsibility and I think they have. You see a lot of guys step on the pitch tonight wanting to take responsibility and take the ball. The young guys wanted the ball as well, and that’s what it takes. MLS is such a long season that you’ll go through some rough patches, and that’s when the leadership steps up. We got a great locker room. We got everything we need in there to be a successful team but once in a while, it takes the leaders of this team to step up a little bit more.”
    On his health status after taking a fall in the second half:
    “I took a little bit of a knock but I didn’t think it was that bad. I’ll visit with the medical staff in the next couple of days but I know I should be fine.”
    On tonight’s match:
    “Disappointed. It was one of those nights where we have what we wanted, we created chances. I thought the team looked good, but we were not fine in the last third. We didn’t finalize it in the first half. One of our mistakes and they took it – I would say that in that play that was an accident when the ball hit and it went in. But that’s the game, we have to accept it – it has happened to us before when we don’t create as many options and we’re sharp and effective. Tonight, Vancouver was very effective and I have to recognize that. Especially in the last 15 minutes of the first half when they scored and in the last 15 minutes of the second half when there was the space and they just started taking advantage of that.”
    On not playing Mauro Rosales in his return to Vancouver:
    “I considered all those emotional parts of the game, but at the time of the game we have to see just what the unit is that is needed and Mauro is a very important player that we have used and we will use for sure. I think tonight I decided just to keep him there.”
    On putting Mauro Diaz in after missing four games:
    “I’m glad to see him finally in the game. Still, we get shortened days of training for him so unfortunately we couldn’t play him the whole time and I wanted to keep our plan with him and have him at 100 per cent. But Mauro came and he looked very good so I’m happy to have him back on the team in full form. We look forward to seeing him in the next month.”
    On missing Matt Hedges in a game like this:
    “I mean it would be easy to say that after the disappointment like that defensively. It is normal in the game, when you lose that way that you start to see the pieces that are missing. But we trust in the guys that we want and unfortunately today we were not sharp, especially in the last 20 minutes.”
    On what they need to work on for the next two road games:
    “This group has been recognized and I have and people have seen it, that this is a group that has a lot of character. We have a group of players that will bounce back, we have proven that. So when we’re looking forward for the next games, it’s just to get points. It’s not an easy journey in this league. You see how competitive it is in this league, and especially in the conference games. We obviously want to win all the games that we compete in. But today we are going with empty pockets and next week we prepare for New York to get points there.”
    On tonight’s match:
    “I think our locker room is a little disappointed right now. I thought, especially in the first half, we had many chances that if we put away, the game is a little bit different. I don’t think we’re happy about the way the goals went in – a little soft and another set piece goal that we’ve conceded. Overall, pretty disappointed.”
    On their defensive performance:
    “They got a few chances, but at the same time I think we definitely put our mark on the game with our chances. I think if one of them went in, like I said, it makes it a little different. Not thrilled with the goals we gave up. I feel like we kind of beat ourselves, but that’s the game sometimes.”
    On not maximizing on chances:
    “Credit to Ousted, he had a good night, saved some point blank shots. We had some that just narrowly missed. So we’ll get back to the drawing board. I mean we’re not too concerned – we feel pretty good about the performance we put in.”
    On tonight’s match:
    “We’re leaving with a sour taste. We feel like especially in the first half we created a lot of chances and we just need to be able to tuck them away.”
    On not finding the back of the net:
    “I think their keeper made some great saves. We were just unlucky tonight not to be able to put a few away. One miss happened on defence and it cost us a goal – the own goal.”
    On their defence:
    “I think in the first half that goal was just unlucky. In the second half, we lost a bit of the organization in the back and in the midfield and it cost us two more mistakes and two more goals.”

    Until next time, have a great soccer!!
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    Duane Rollins
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    Last month, the Canadian team drew close to 55,000 fans at BC Place in Vancouver for the 2018 World Cup Qualifiers match. This was the largest attendance total for any national team sport event in Canada’s history.
    The Rio 2016 Women’s Olympic Football Tournament will be held in August as the team heads out to Rio de Janeiro for matches. Canada will open on August 3 with a match against Australia and will also face off against Germany and Zimbabwe.
    Coach John Herdman is hoping to see that all the players on the side will continue to grow and mature. He is looking forward to watching some of the younger players on the team develop.
    Canada is hoping to advance upon the bronze medal it won in London in 2012. This was the first team medal for a Canadian team in the summer Olympics since 1936.
    The team will have two matches in June, one in Toronto and one in Ottawa, in the Road to Rio International Series. The matches on June 4 and 7 will feature the team taking on Brazil. Canada already has eight wins in ten international matches in this calendar season.
    The competition for Canada will go well beyond the Olympics. On September 6, the Canadian team will head to Vancouver to face El Salvador in the CONCACAF semi-final. Matches with these two and Honduras will determine who will join Mexico in the CONCACAF Final.
    Canada will be on the road before the match with El Salvador. They will take on Honduras on September 2 in San Pedro Sula. Canada has plenty of points but their goal differential is worse than what Honduras has. Mexico has already clinched a spot in the final for leading in the group.
    Many of the matches that the Canadians will be involved in will be on TSN and RDS. The Road to Rio series will be aired on these stations as well as the Amway Canadian Championship series. RDS will still air Impact Montreal FC matches.
    On the men’s side, the Amway Canadian Championship series will continue to offer some great matches with teams like the Vancouver Whitecaps, Ottawa Fury, FC Edmonton, Impact Montreal FC and Toronto FC competing to be the best men’s soccer team in the country. The matches will take place in June. Home and away legs will be played in the finals as Vancouver will take in either Ottawa or Edmonton and Montreal will face Toronto to see who will get into the finals.

    In Saturday’s game at Bobby Kennedy Memorial Stadium (5:00 p.m. ET), Grey Vanney will be expected to start with the same line-up two games running for the first time this season. After serving his suspension last week, Benoit Cheyrou is considered a doubt for the fixture in the U.S. capital after he left training this week with a thigh problem.
    There remains a possibility that Justin Morrow could be suspended after his challenge on Revolution midfielder Gershon Koffie, for which Morrow received a yellow card, was taken under review by Major League Soccer’s disciplinary committee. Daniel Lovitz or Ashtone Morgan would most likely start in the left-back berth if a penalty did come down.
    The Reds (1-2-2) have five points from five games on a road-swing that will also see them visit Montreal and Portland before finally getting their home season under way on May 7 against FC Dallas.
    D.C. (1-3-2) are one point and one place above Toronto in the Eastern Conference but have played a game more. They doubled their goals record against Vancouver, having scored only four in five winless games to open the season.
    Alvaro Saborio and Fabian Espindola scored a pair of goals apiece and the new look TFC back line, which has impressed to date, will also have their hands full this weekend with Boca Juniors loanee Luciano Acosta, who provided two assists against the Whitecaps.
    TFC had only one shot on target against New England and have a paltry total of 16 on frame five games into the season. Striker Jozy Altidore made a welcome return against the Revolution in a 4-4-2 formation and combined with Sebastian Giovinco for the late equalizer. TFC’s forward line will hope to test the inexperienced Travis Worra more than the Whitecaps did, with United’s star goalkeeper Bill Hamid out injured for four to six months.
    Saturday’s match-up is the second of a four-game home stretch for D.C. United. The last time these sides met, on June 27 last year, they played out a 0-0 draw at BMO Field.
    Projected Line-ups
    Toronto: C.Irwin, D.Moor, D.Perquis, S.Beitashour, J.Morrow, M.Delgado, M.Bradley, W.Johnson, J.Osorio, S.Giovinco, J.Altidore
    D.C. United: T.Worra, S.Franklin, S.Birnbaum, B. Boswell, T.Kemp, P.Nyarko, N. DeLeon, M.Sarvas, L.Neagle, F.Espindola, C.Rolfe
    Referee: Mathieu Bourdeau
    Broadcast: TSN4
    Follow Ciarán @keep_score

    Plus Kevin's thoughts on the game !
    Until next time, have a great soccer!
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    Support Kevin and SPN

    Sports Podcasting Network
    Supportez Kevin et SPN


    Same old foe, mostly same faces

    By Guest, in 24th Minute,

    In Saturday’s game at Gillette Stadium (4:00 p.m. ET), Jozy Altidore is expected to make his first start of the MLS season, with coach Greg Vanney switching back to the 4-3-3 formation that was the go-to in 2015. With Altidore up top, Sebastian Giovinco is likely to start wide left. Daniel Lovitz or Mo Babouli will start wide right.
    Tsubasa Endoh sat out last game with a leg contusion and is questionable for Saturday.
    Benoit Cheyrou is unavailable after his sending off for two yellow cards in the loss to Colorado Rapids. TFC opted not to appeal the decision.
    The Professional Referee Organization responded this week to the officiating controversy following a slew of red cards so far this season.
    “If players continue making such challenges, referees will continue making such decisions,” PRO general manager Peter Walton said.
    Toronto are tied for fifth best defence in the league, with only four goals conceded to the Revolution’s seven. However, The Reds will have their work cut out on Saturday. TFC’s new-looking defensive unit will face Uruguayan Diego Fagundez, who has been involved in four of the Revolution’s five goals this season, with two goals and two assists.
    New England Coach Jay Heaps has a squad with a clean bill of health and has Gershon Koffie and Je-Vaughn Watson both available for selection after the duo were suspended for last weekend’s controversial 1-0 win against the New York Red Bulls.
    In the last meeting between the sides, New England came out 3-1 winners at BMO Field on September 13th last year as TFC were stumbling into the playoffs. The game at Gillette Stadium in August saw the same score line and the Revolution will be looking to make it eight games undefeated against Toronto.
    Projected Line-ups
    Toronto: C.Irwin, D.Moor, D.Perquis, S.Beitashour, J.Morrow, M.Delgado, M.Bradley, W.Johnson, T.Endoh, S.Giovinco, J.Altidore
    New England Revolution: B.Shuttleworth, C.Tierney, J.Goncalves, A.Farrell, Je-Vaughn Watson, S.Caldwell, G.Koffie, D.Fagundez, L.Nguyen, T.Bunbury, J.Agudelo
    Referee: Edvin Jurisevic
    Broadcast: TSN2
    Photo Credit: David Silverman (New England's Lee Nguyen challenges for the ball as he's surrounded by three TFC players in the Revolution's 3-1 win at Gillette Stadium in September, 2015)

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