Rocket Robin

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  1. Result and details of the Saturday October 14, 2017 USL game between Toronto FC II and FC Cincinnati played at The Ontario Soccer Centre in Vaughan at 7:30pm. 9 min...TFC Tsubasa Endoh GOAL...TFC Luca Uccello runs on left to top left edge of FCC box and he crosses ball to center where charging TFC Ben Spencer heads 8 yarder up middle low towards right post with sprawling goalie Mitch Hildebrandt getting shins to it and deflecting it away. Endoh charges forward and shoots 10 yard roller while in line with right post into left corner of net. 30 min...TFC Tsubasa Endoh GOAL...TFC Luca Uccello on right taps ball to sideline for TFC Dante Campbell who takes high cross from 30 yards on right. TFC Ben Spencer on left side of box heads ball from 8 yard line across box to Endoh who blasts low 10 yard shot that hits sliding defender at 6 yards and deflects over him and sliding goalie and into right side of net. 40 min...FCC Danni Konnig GOAL...FCC Kenney Walker takes freekick chip from left edge of box near endline and leaping Konnig at 6 yards heads ball forward in crowd of players and over flying goalie Mark Pais's outstretched arms just under bar. 49 min...FCC Kenney Walker GOAL...Walker pass attempt from 30 yards in middle hits TFC player. FCC Tyler Polak recovers ball at 25 yards and taps to Walker who one-touches low shot forward around TFC Luca Uccello and into right side of net just between post and diving goalie. 53 min...TFC Shaan Hundal GOAL...TFC Mitch Taintor taps ball from 65 yards back to TFC Brandon Onkony who chips pass from 70 yards forward that finds Hundal behind two defenders on one bounce at 25 yards and he chips 22 yarder from just outside box on right over goalie who was just inside box and ball one-bounces into empty net. 66 min...FCC Djiby Fall GOAL...FCC goalie picks up ball after TFC Ben Spencer faceplants in box and rolls ball forward. An FCC player at FCC 20 yards sends low pass forward for charging FCC Jimmy McLaughlin near center line. He charges forward to edge of TFC box and runs to left endline with TFC Rocco Romeo keeping him outside of clear shot. McLaughlin slides to send cross near end line into middle of 6 yard box and charging FCC Djiby Fall steps in front of TFC Mitchell Taintor to tip in 5 yarder up middle into center of net with goalie frozen in middle. 85 min...FCC Justin Hoyte GOAL...Hoyte at 30 yard line on right sideline sends centering pass to FCC Kenney Walker closer to middle. He steps forward and chips ball into box where charging Hoyte gets behind TFC Mitchell Taintor who heads ball backwards as he doesn't jump high enough at 12 yards. The ball lands at 8 yards and Hoyte on bounce shoots 4 yarder while in line with right post into left corner of net. Final Score:...Toronto FC II...3...FC Cincinnati...4... Attendance was announced as 1,119. It had started to rain hard before game time and continued all night. I'll admit there were more fans than last the last game which was a surprise for such a miserable night but nowhere near those numbers actually turned up. There were more than thirty traveling fans—more than just parents and family of team members. They were chanting the whole game up against the pre-teen Little Ultras who had been absent the last two home games. There was even a fog that drifted in for the start of the game. I was in a tough spot as when I say 'notebook' that doesn't mean a computer but pen and paper. I couldn't get my umbrella to wedge between the fencing of the stands for protection so well before game time I asked to squeeze into what I call the treehouse/pressbox. Permission eventually granted but it was somewhat an obstructed view. My goal descriptions are embellished by rewatching them on YouTube. Interesting hearing the PA staff also skeptical about the number of fans and earlier reading through the stadium rules about forbidden behaviour and objects in the stands "...large bags and umbrellas..." and them mumble away from the microphone "except for tonight". Everyone had a raincoat or umbrella. There were some questions before the game which was the last weekend of the regular season of whether TFC II would use their young players or drop some TFC players down that wouldn't play in the MLS game tomorrow against Montreal. It might be important to keep them tuned up for the MLS playoffs. Would they give their MLS regulars a rest that were away at World Cup qualifying which meant Michael Bradley and Jozy Altidore for the USA and Armando Cooper for Panama. Nicolas Hasler was NOT away playing with Liechtenstein. In a mid-week game, because Tampa Bay beat Orlando City B, Cincinnati clinched a playoff spot without playing. Although tonight they could move up a spot or two I wasn't sure if they would rest players. Man of the Match (who is always a TFC II player) was Tsubasa Endoh who with the first two goals of the game was the obvious choice. Ashtone Morgan and Ben Spencer were the other MLS roster players starting tonight's game. Defender Morgan was injured earlier this year but has had a hard time finding playing time at the MLS or USL level. His playing tonight solved the push-pull between TFC Academy grad young Julian Dunn-Johnson and MLS high draft choice Brandon Aubrey for the starting spot. Neither player was even on the bench. Dunn-Johnson's positional doppelganger Nobel Okello was an unused sub. Neither of the goalies were spectacular in this game but weather conditions played a big factor I think. Mitch Hildebrandt had saved three of four spot kicks after extra time in a Round of 16 US Open Cup game against MLS Chicago Fire. Cincinnati were eventually knocked out in the semi-finals. He didn't look good at all being caught out on Hundal's goal. I was only surprised that Mark Pais started instead of Angelo Cavalluzzo because Pais allowed four goals last week against Bethlehem. Referee Fab Stasolla gave out four Yellow cards (three to TFC but two of them were after the 90 minute mark) in a game that's only danger was slide tackles. Roughest part of the game was when FCC Harrison Delbridge and the TFC goalie got into a pushing match after Delbridge bent over to grab the ball after their goal at 40 minutes to hurry up and get the game restarted. FCC almost didn't need the end of game heroics as one minute after that goal at 40 minutes FCC Djiby Fall jumped for a cross sent in from the left and his low shot from 18 yards hit the right post and FCC Danny Konig standing all alone at 8 yards was called offside. 47 minutes had FCC Corben Bone at 30 yards in the middle roll the ball forward and right for Konig who received it at 20 yards, turned, and fired between defenders at 18 yards and hit the bar. The ball deflected back and downward and hit the back of the flying goalie and deflected back and hit the bottom of the right post from 4 yards and then TFC Mitch Taintor cleared over his own end line. The next minute had Konig tapped a pass and blasted a low 15 yarder between players from the left side of the box and the goalie blocked but couldn't hold on and a defender cleared. I was surprised that TFC only made one sub in the game so no players were rewarded for participating. I'd expect it was because the game was undecided until almost the end. FCC dominated possession especially in the second half with TFC counterattacks their only chances. League stats post FCC leading 8 to 1 in cornerkicks. The TFC lineup again made me happy with six Canadian starters and six of seven players on the bench being Canadians. This was 'fan appreciation day' although I don't recall seeing the ice cream truck here tonight nor any burger tent set up. A popcorn wagon was brought to the game to give the fans free popcorn but I don't know how many takers would want popcorn coated with rainwater with their butter. Halftime had the finals of the KIA car. One finalist of the six chosen throughout the season was allowed to draw out a key which might start the car electronically from the 50 yards away. The third contestant succeeded which ended the building suspense. There was not much of a 'meet and greet' promised by the team before the game. The rain had fans just as anxious to leave as soon as they could. Players came over to the fence to chat with fans and the end gate was opened so fans could come out onto the field but there were few takers. Many of the players used that gate as an exit back to the locker room. Cincinnati's huge USL crowds of 20K have sent them up the list of potential MLS expansion teams. Thinking ahead I thought some potential expansion draft that TFC who lost oft injured defender Mark Bloom of home state Georgia to Atlanta United, would lose oft injured defender Nick Hagglund to his hometown Cincinnati. Cincinnati is one of the independent USL teams—not in any kind of arrangement with an MLS team. They have some former MLS players on their roster including TFC forward Andrew Wiedeman which the PA guy mispronounced which proves he's newer than 2014. Cincinnati ends the season at 12 wins, 10 losses, 10 ties for 46 points. Their plus/minus is -2. They climb to sixth place in the East (not knowing all the weekend results yet). Eight teams in each conference make the playoffs but finishing fifth to eighth is a handicapped since each round is only one game and hosted by the higher ranked team so Cincinnati is almost guaranteed to play all their games on the road. The result ends the season for Toronto FC II. Their record falls to 6 wins, 19 losses, and 7 ties for 25 points. They have a goals plus/minus of -27. 27 goals for, 54 against. They finish fifteenth (last) in the Eastern Conference. Last year (in a 30 game season) their record was 7 wins, 18 losses, 5 ties for 26 points. They were eleventh out of fourteen teams last season. The League 1 Ontario championship final was originally to be held here tonight when it was scheduled back in the spring but was bumped by TFC II having preference with the Ontario Soccer Centre according to L1O chair Dino Rossi. After some uncertainty they have rescheduled to play here on Friday the 20th . The rain was fitting destiny for L1O assuming the weather will be better. Ironic that this was the last game TFC II will play at this location as next season they will groundshare at BMO Field and Lamport Stadium in downtown Toronto. I think TFC II are glad to leave the OSC facility despite the polite thank you tweets. Fans won't miss the aluminum bench seating (particularly in cold weather or rainy weather like tonight) and the port a potties. The ownership will be glad to control concession revenue rather than lose it to indie-owned mobile food trucks. The new locations will allow liquor sales so will attract a more hard core support replacing the family entertainment atmosphere of games the last few years. Rocket Robin robing@eol.ca twitter @RocketRobin01
  2. Wed October 4th Oakville Blue Devils 0-0 Woodbridge Strikers in which both teams win their conferences in the same game! http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o280.htm Sat October 7th Masters FA Saints 2-0 Durham United FA http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o281.htm Sat October 7th Aurora FC 1-4 Toronto Skillz http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o282.htm Sun October 8th Sanjaxx Lions 0-2 Toronto FC III http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o283.htm end of regular season That makes 62 L1O games for me this year!
  3. Results and details of the Friday October 6, 2017 USL game between Toronto FC II and Bethlehem Steel FC played at Ontario Soccer Centre in Vaughan at 7:30pm. 18 min...BSFC Santi Moar GOAL...BSFC defender on left side sends long low pass forward from 75 yards that TFC Julian Dunn-Johnson slides to but misses at 45 yard line and Moar receives at 35 yards and runs down left with zig zags to cut towards middle. When near end line he takes 12 yard shot around TFC Mitch Taintor and ball hits foot of retreating TFC Lars Eckenrode and pops into top center of net with goalie Mark Pais kneeling on the left post. 21 min...BSFC Santi Moar GOAL...BSFC player passes forward in middle from 65 yards to BSFC Seku Conneh on center line who taps ball to BSFC Adam Najem who runs forward to TFC 28 yard line and rolls pass forward to Moar. Moar is a step ahead of retreating TFC Julian Dunn-Johnson and takes 15 yard tough angle shot from left into top right corner of net with goalie guarding left post. 52 min...BSFC Derrick Jones GOAL...Derrick Jones cross from 45 yards is over to right where BSFC player at TFC 35 yard line runs forward on right. He centers pass forward to BSFC Adam Najem just inside right side of box. Najem turns and rolls centering pass to Derrick Jones who was diagonally charging over from left with TFC Julian Dunn-Johnson behind him and from 8 yards even with right post fires shot forward low into center of net just over sliding goalie at 5 yards. 60 min...TFC Shaan Hundal GOAL...TFC Anthony Osorio long run on left and low cross from 22 yards is blocked by BSFC Aaron Jones. Osorio gets possession back and crosses into box from left edge and Hundal chests ball at 8 yards in line with left post and takes midair shot that hits BSFC Charles Reymann in the back. Hundal then rolls 7 yarder into right corner of net with goalie Jake McGuire guarding left post. 80 min...BSFC Seku Conneh GOAL...BSFC Aaron Jones takes cornerkick from right that's popped away by TFC player in crowd of players in box. BSFC Joshua Yaro at 22 yards on right pops header forward and BSFC Aaron Jones at 18 yards with back to goal flicks header forward and centered for charging Conneh to shoot 12 yarder low to left side of net freezing goalie in middle. 87 min...TFC Shaan Hundal GOAL...TFC Luca Uccello rolls pass forward on left from 50 yard line and TFC Ryan Telfer runs down left sideline with retreating BSFC Joshua Yaro in his way. Telfer at left end line rolls centering pass and Hundal at 8 yards with BSFC Auston Trusty having fallen shoots forward that sprawling goalie gets arm to but ball deflects into left side of net. Final Score:...Toronto FC II...2...Bethlehem Steel FC...4... Attendance was not announced but the USL website lists it as 647. The threat of rain possibly killed a lot of the walk up crowd. It started to rain right after the national anthems but stopped before the 10 minute mark and didn't rain again until overnight. Man of the Match (who is always at TFC II player) was announced as Shaan Hundal and with his two goals was an obvious choice. He was paired up with Daniel DaSilva who was playing only his second USL game and his first start and the pair were dangerous together. Referee David Barrie gave out no cards in this game and players weren't begging for Penalty kicks so just a few routine fouls. Noble Okello made his first appearance in USL subbing on at 70 minutes replacing Brian James (who now has dyed his hair blonde). Okello is the last of the three pro-contract signees (September 15) to make an appearance as Julian Dunn-Johnson is a starter on defence and Rocco Romeo gets some time. Dunn-Johnson I have praised in my reports before and tonight after the game as well in front of his family. Now high MLS draft choice Brandon Aubrey is not even on the bench. However watching the goals replayed and his part in them, I better hold back my applause at least for this week. Mark Pais was TFC's goalie and didn't look that great. Maybe it's because Angelo Cavalluzzo who must be considered #1 has makes such spectacular saves that are often hyped as 'Save of the Week' are commonplace, it had me wondering, 'Could Cavalluzzo have stopped that?'. BSFC almost turned this into a rout at 57 minutes when Santi Moar had what would have been his third goal called back for offside then Hundal scored three minutes later and the result was in doubt. Injury time had TFC with a few chances to close. 90 minutes had TFC Anthony Osorio (very common play this game) cross from 35 yards on the left that had TFC Luca Uccello leap and head a 10 yarder over the net. 91 minutes had Hundal intercept the goalie's clearance at 35 yards, give a short pass to TFC Matthew Srbely who shot a 22 yarder from the right wide left of the net. During warm-ups I saw TFC's Sergio Camargo and BSFC Chris Nanco talking at the center line. They were both students of Syracuse University. Both players seemed to be trying too hard this game. Nanco had a large cheering section as he is from Brampton. I checked with him after the game that I watched him with League 1 Ontario Sigma FC then he was drafted by MLS Philadelphia Union and they placed him in Bethlehem for playing time. He had 15 yard shot at 42 minutes sent wide and a 25 yarder a minute later that was also wide. 53 minutes had him shoot not just over the net but over the back fence. Camargo who has got in to games since recovering from a long injury had a few off target shots as well but was trusted with some of the cornerkicks. The MLS team didn't play in the Internatioal break this weekend but there were no TFC players dropped down and slumming it. Neither were there any player here who played for TFC III last night in L1O action that got hammered 5-0 in their game against Sigma FC. Six Canadian starters tonight and six of seven players on the bench were Canadian makes me happy! In TFC II's previous game, a 1-0 upset over first place Louisville FC, midfielder Liam Fraser made the USL 'Team of the Week' but because he picked up another Yellow card, he missed tonight's game. About that attendance, I certainly knew they didn't announce it at the game and estimated it was slightly smaller than their last home game against Louisville when the hottest weekend of the season (even though it was already Fall hit the GTA) and tonight the rain warning would dampen crowds, I wasn't sure I'd find it on the USL site so asked a TFC official. He said he was told not to announce it over the PA but gave me what he remembered (actually under by about 20). Ashamed of the attendance? Fine but I said wait until next year where they will play at BMO Field and Lamport Stadium and they can build off the MLS crowd and the attendance will look like it has improved exponentially. This was the only game in the USL tonight. The result drops the TFC II record to 6 wins, 18 losses, 7 ties for 25 points. They are in fifteenth (last) in the Eastern Conference. They are now four points behind Richmond Kickers with one game to go so that's where they will finish. Only team worse than them is Portland Timbers 2 who are last in the West. Their +/- in goals scored/allowed is Bethlehem's record improves to 12 wins, 11 losses, 7 ties for 43 points with two games left. They jump from tenth to a tie for sixth place in the East in one night! Eight teams in each Conference make the playoffs. Bethlehem owes some of their standings success to playing TFC as they have now won all three games this season. They played at BMO Field on May 13 and won 1-0 and in Bethlehem on August 13 and won 3-1. Their Jamaican international Cory Burke scored in both those games. He did not play tonight because of suspension but he was sitting in the section beside me. The team moves on to Rochester to play the Rhinos on Tuesday. MLS directly owned teams are not doing well at all in the USL. Seattle Sounders 2, LA Galaxy 2, Vancouver Whitecaps 2, and Portland Timbers 2 hold the bottom spots in the West in that order. In the East, Orlando City B is eighth and New York Red Bulls 2 are ninth (after being first last year and winning the playoffs). There's talk of moving the MLS B teams down to a new USL third division and letting the indie-owned teams stay in the USL top division. I don't know of the MLS associate teams like Bethlehem who have a looser agreement with Philadelphia Union. TFC II's final game of the season is next Saturday against FC Cincinnati at 7:30pm at the Ontario Soccer Centre. Cincinnati are the other team tied for sixth place right now so they will be looking desperately for the win. One thing is they be surprised by the size of the crowd as TFC II is only drawing 3% of the crowd size of Cincinnati home games. Rocket Robin robing@eol.ca twitter @RocketRobin01
  4. Friday September 29, 2017 Durham United FA 2-1 North Toronto Nitros http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o270.htm Sunday October 1, 2017 Sanjaxx Lions vs Oakville Blue Devils http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o271.htm
  5. Result and details of the Wednesday September 27, 2017 USL game between Toronto FC II and Louisville City FC played at the Ontario Soccer Centre in Vaughan at 7:30pm. 73 min...TFC Shaan Hundal GOAL...TFC Jordan McCrary receives a pass at the center line on the right and runs downfield and sends low pass forward from 35 yard line. Hundal outruns LC Paco Craig to get to ball at 15 yard line inside box on right side and carries forward to 7 yard line and rolls 12 yard shot into left corner of net past sliding goalie Gregory Ranjitsingh who came out to challenge. 89 min...Louisville RED card...Paco Craig earns his second Yellow card within four minutes from referee Yusri Rudolf for following through on a tackle of TFC Matthew Srbely bumping him over after Srbely had given a short pass at LC 50 yard line upfield to TFC Shaan Hundal. Final Score:...Toronto FC II.....1.....Louisville City.....0..... Attendance was announced as 726 on this cool night with the heatwave which drew the hottest temperatures of the year in the GTA finally dispersing and the weather getting back to being like a Fall night should be at the end of September. Some folks weren't dressed warm enough. Referee Yusri Rudolf gave out only three cards this game (two to Louisville) which didn't get rough. He didn't fall for Penalty kick calls by either team. He gave two Yellow card to LC Paco Craig within four minutes. The first one was for his challenge on TFC Matthew Srbely smashing him over at the LC 35 yard sideline and resulting in a lengthy delay for an injury. His second Yellow was much tamer but was also against Srbely. TFC goalie Angelo Cavalluzzo was injured at 79 minutes when he dived forward to break up a pass that found LC Mark-Anthony Kaye in at 8 yards. These two delays which both required the trainer were the major reason six minutes of added time was announced. Another injury, this time to TFC Aidan Daniels at 93 minutes extended time to 98 minutes. Louisville's frantic injury time action had LC Mark-Anthony Kaye have a 10 yard shot on the right blocked by a defender, an LC player's cross land on top of the net, and LC Paulo Delpiccolo take a cornerkick from the right that had LC Luke Spencer in a crowd of players at 10 yards head a ball over the bar. TFC Angelo Cavalluzzo earned the shutout. He had less to do then most games but the save on Brian Ownby's blast at 68 minutes where he flew to the right and palmed the ball just over the bar probably saved the game for TFC when the score was still 0-0. TFC Julian Dunn-Johnson looked really good in the first half with some spectacular defending. This included two headers at 26 minutes at 15 yards to clear a cross from the right then at 8 yards to clear a chipped shot. In the second half I didn't notice him as much as LC may have been avoiding him. Another defender, Lars Eckenrode made some key stops in the first half as well. I thought midfielder Matthew Srbely (first pro-player announced in League 1 Ontario as he had a contract that allowed him to play for TFC III (ie L1O) and TFC II) played his best game of the time I've seen him with TFC II. He had some good runs and passes. The best was at 12 minutes when he stole the ball off a defender and raced in on the right from the 45 yard line and cut to the middle but another defender caught him and the goalie fell on the ball at 12 yards without him getting a shot away. Midfielder Aidan Daniels was suddenly taking all the freekicks and cornerkicks tonight. With no Sebastian Endoh nor Brian James in the lineup, Daniels fit in quite well with some threating drives. The TFC forward line was Shaan Hundal (age 18) and Malik Johnson (age 19) which the team has never paired up at the start of a game before. Tonight's game page with the recent TFC III signings included, the TFC II lineup has bloated to 35 (that includes nine TFC dropdowns). That can be contrasted with the Louisville roster of only 20 (which is a bit low from other USL team game rosters I've seen). So many players make it difficult to keep a consistent roster week by week. TFC didn't use any players with MLS experience. They had no one with a number less than '35' although #20 Sergio Camargo was an unused sub but except for playing during the Canadian Championships he has not played an MLS game. One of the soccer dad's after the game agreed with me that TFC II played better without the dropdown players from the MSL team. "Yes", he said, "some of these kids have been playing together for five years!". I was at Saturday night's League 1 Ontario game and defender Rocco Romeo was a halftime sub in that game but at the USL level was an unused sub tonight. Another recently signed to a USL contract player, Dante Campbell, was back down to L1O and played the entire 90 minutes but was not on the bench tonight. Daniel DaSilva who came in as a sub at 60 minutes played the first 60 minutes in the L1O game too The players didn't have much time to come to the fence and talk to fans as they had to disappear for a meet-and-greet inside to thank fans who'd donated used soccer equipment for a drive the team was holding. I was looking forward to seeing Louisville for two players. Goalie Gregory Ranjitsingh I used to watch in L1O in 2014 play for Sigma FC. Web bios skip this and only include his time at Mercer University in Georgia. He's not been capped by T & T because of his father's heritage but I still consider him a Toronto guy (OK Pickering like singer Shawn Mendes). Second is Mark Anthony Kaye who didn't get the start tonight but he came on at 59 minutes. I was surprised he came in as a forward and was double teamed most of the time. I used to watch him play on TFC Academy in 2014 and TFC II in 2015. He used to wear #44 and was used as a defender. I made sure to say hello to him by the fence before the game and gush about how I watched him play at BMO Field earlier this month with the Canadian Nats against Jamaica (used as a midfielder in that game). Louisville has only been operating since 2014. From what I'd heard Orlando City had a championship USL team and they were rewarded an MLS team. They moved their USL team out of state to Louisville. Orlando later decided they did want a USL team in their city and in 2016 started Orlando City B. Louisville kept the purple colour uniform scheme from their Orlando days. Just last week Louisville councillors and investors agreed to a promised new stadium and will move out of Slugger Field, a minor league baseball stadium. This was the third last game for TFC II at the Ontario Soccer Centre. Next year they will play at BMO Field (I'll assume after the MLS team games) and Lamport Stadium (I'll assume stand alone games). I'm warming up a little to that idea as today's drive to get here during the rush hour took over an hour. Weekend games and driving home at 9:30pm are a breeze and certainly beat downtown transit. Louisville City is the first place team and would have clinched the Eastern Conference with a win tonight said Mark-Anthony Kaye before the game. TFC has had good results against first place teams before getting results aganst Charleston and Charlotte in two games in a row in a tough part of their schedule yet other times lose to the fourteenth place Richmond which keep them in fifteenth. The result improves TFC II's record to 6 wins, 17 losses, 7 ties for 25 points. They remain in fifteenth place (last) in the Eastern Conference. The loss drops Louisville City's record to 16 wins, 6 losses, 7 ties for 55 points. They stay in first place but don't clinch the East. The difference in their records is contrasted in that this was TFC's sixth win and Louisville's sixth loss and TFC has a minus 24 goal difference and Louisville has a plus 24 goal difference. Rocket Robin robing@eol.ca twitter @RocketRobin01
  6. Saturday Sept 23rd Sigma FC 7-0 Sanjaxx Lions http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o257.htm Saturday Sept 23rd North Mississauga Panthers 1-5 Toronto FC III http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o258.htm Sunday Sept 24th Vaughan Azzurri 8-0 Ottawa South United Force http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o259.htm Sunday Sept 24th Woodbridge Strikers 4-0 Aurora FC http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o260.htm
  7. my takes on League 1 Ontario action: Saturday September 16th Sigma FC 6 Pro Stars FC 0 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o245.htm Saturday September 16th North Mississauga Panthers 3 FC London 1 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o246.htm Sunday September 17th Toronto FC III 3 Oakville Blue Devils 3 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o247.htm my 50th L1O game this season. Sunday September 17th Woodbridge Strikers 4 Toronto Skillz FC 1 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o248.htm
  8. Result and details of the Saturday September 9, 2007 USL game between Toronto FC II and New York Red Bulls II played at BMO Stadium in Toronto at 8:00pm. 34 min...TFC Jay Chapman GOAL...TFC Brian James at TFC 45 yard line in middle passes ball forward and left to TFC Ben Spencer who rolls ball from NYRB 40 yard line on left forward to TFC Jordan Hamilton who charges forward from 30 yards on left and sends low bouncing cross from 22 yards just outside top corner of box. Chapman running forward to 7 yards even with right post beats charging goalie Evan Louro and rolls ball under him to left side of net. 41 min...TFC Lars Eckenrode pulls down Florian Valot in box and referee Pierre-Luc Lauziere calls for a Penalty kick. 42 min...NYRB Stefano Bonomo GOAL...Bonomo rolls Penalty kick into right corner of net beyond diving goalie Angelo Cavalluzzo. 44 min...TFC Lars Eckenrode pulls down NYRB Vincent Bezecourt who had deked through two players on edge of TFC box to get to 15 yards. The referee gives Eckenrode a Yellow card and awards NYRB a Penalty kick. 47 min...NYRB Stefano Bonomo GOAL...Bonomo rolls Penalty kick into right corner of net beyond diving goalie. Final Score:...Toronto FC II...1...New York Red Bulls...2... Attendance was listed as 3582 on the USL web site which seems very generous—certainly not hanging on to a great per cent of the sellout 29050 who had just finished watching the MLS Toronto FC beat San Jose Earthquake 4-0 an hour before. Hey people! Stay! Free game! I thought the USL game had less than that even with fans being moved to sit on the East side stands to be better supervised with less staff. About a third of that crowd left before the game was over. Let's say the fans who came dressed in t-shirts and short didn't stay around for this game with it now dark and the temperature falling. Still the numbers are an improvement on the Ontario Soccer Centre crowds which are usually well under 1000. This the first TFC II game played at BMO Field since the team announced that next season TFC will include free USL season tickets for their MLS season ticket holders. They will also move their games to BMO Field and Lamport Stadium in downtown Toronto. This is so to help build the attendance as the USL in 2019 will split into two divisions and teams that don't meet certain standards (attendance and stadium facilities are some of the details) will be placed in the lower division. The lower division will not have the more competitive teams and that would not be as much benefit to MLS teams that want to keep their players sharp for transfer back up to their main team. The team sponsors are the same as up at the OSC so prizes were provided by such companies as Anthony's Espresso Coffee Supplies. The scoreboard stadium here is a big improvement over the one at OSC. Man of the Match was Jay Chapman who was an easy choice as he scored their only goal. He won the coffee tonight! Just one week ago he came in as a substitute for the Canadian National team against Jamaica at this same stadium. Tonight he couldn't make the main MLS team bench. That's become not that unusual as the team once again had no Canadian starters. Jonathan Osorio did sub in at halftime for the MLS team and scored a goal. Tosaint Ricketts got in at 64 minutes. NYRB looked the better team tonight but it was two Penalty kick goals within five minutes that won it for them. Stefano Bonomo placed both in the bottom right corner just out of the reach of the diving goalie Angelo Cavalluzo. Julian Dunn-Johnson (17 year old Canadian) and Brandon Aubrey both played defence at the same time for TFC. It's usually been an either/or situation. It looked like it was sometimes-captain Mitchell Taintor who was the odd man out tonight. Next game I could see Lars Eckenrode being benched. He gave up the two Penalty kicks. He picked up a Yellow card on the second incident and was subbed off at halftime for Brandon Onkony. (midfielder Brian James was captain tonight). Jordan McCrary was the other defender although he has the freedom to run up the wing so was often well upfield. I wondered why Shaan Hundal didn't get into the game tonight? He warmed up but didn't replace Ben Spencer who stayed the whole 90 minutes. Hundal has been known for past late game heroics and is a good pairing with Jordan Hamilton. TFC didn't even make a third substitution! Referee Pierre-Luc Lauziere gave out two Yellow cards to each team. I only found out from the USL website that he gave TFC's Jordan Hamilton a Red card after the game must have ended for 'foul and abusive language'. Hamilton may still have been steamed because he couldn't win a Penalty kick at 68 minutes. Well there goes my idea about a Hamilton-Hundal pairing at least for the next game! NYRB never looked completely comfortable as they couldn't score a second half insurance goal. Their best chance was at 83 minutes when they had Stefano Bonomo cross from 20 yards on the right and Douglas Martinez leapt at 10 yards in the middle and headed the ball over the flying goalie and off the underside of the bar on the right side. The ball bounced and Florian Valot headed from 7 yards on the right that the goalie caught just under the bar. Now TFC had some last gasp efforts with Ryan Telfer centering a cross from the right at 86 minutes and the sliding Sergio Camargo rolled a weak 12 yarder that the goalie smothered. A minute later Telfer had a low 18 yard shot from the left through the defenders and the goalie stopped that. Injury time had Camargo take a 45 yard freekick from the left that was partially cleared and Brian James blasted a 40 yard rebound through players up the middle but the ball flew wide left. NYRB II won the USL Championship last season and were one of the only MLS based teams to make the playoffs. This year they're only sixth in the East and will have to play all of their playoff games (one-game-knockout format) on the road. Podcasts I've heard mention the big club has sold and traded away some of their USL players. The USL site said they haven't lost since the beginning of August but they hadn't won on the road since June 3 and this was only their second road win of the season. At least with these late games the crowd had thinned and I got a seat on the streetcar. TFC II were officially knocked out of the playoffs the middle of this week without playing as a team ahead of them won in a midweek game. They had something like a six zeroes point one percent chance of making the post season after losing to Rochester last week. At least most of their losses have been by only one goal. Their defence has improved from last year but they don't score enough. TFC II's record now stands at 5 wins, 16 losses, 7 ties for 22 points and are fifteenth (last) in the Eastern Conference. NYRB II improves to 11 wins, 11 losses, 5 ties for 38 points and are sixth in the East. Rocket Robin robing@eol.ca twitter @RocketRobin01
  9. Friday September 8th Durham United FA 0 Woodbridge Strikers 2 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o230.htm Sunday September 10th Toronto FC III 11 Windsor TFC Stars 0 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o231.htm Sunday September 10th North Toronto Nitros 8 Aurora FC 0 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o232.htm
  10. I've got audio only of Octavio Zambrano plus Jamaican coach Theodore Whitmore and hallway interviews with players Atiba Hutchinson, Jonathan Osorio, Samuel Piette, Anthony Jackson-Hamel (too soft spoken and some in French) , and Alphonso Davies http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17cana04.htm
  11. Result and details of the Wednesday August 30, 2017 USL game between Toronto FC II and Saint Louis FC played at The Soccer Centre in Vaughan at 7:30pm. 38 min...StL Christian Volesky GOAL...StL Austin Ledbetter at 22 yards in middle rolls ball forward and Volesky steps between two defenders to get pass at 12 yards and at 8 yards even with right post shoots ball over sliding goalie Angelo Cavalluzzo into top right corner of net. 92 min...TFC II Shaan Hundal GOAL...TFC Tsubasa Endoh at 22 yards on right just outside of box sends cross into box and ball is over leaping TFC Jordan McCrary at 8 yards in middle but TFC Jordan Hamilton chests ball down at 10 yards while even with left post to center and Hundal steps over from right and blasts 8 yard shot over waving goalie Devala Gorrick at 3 yards and into top of net. 94 min...game ends 9:28pm. Final Score:...Toronto FC II...1...Saint Louis FC...1... Attendance was announced as 647 on this overcast and mild evening (dark by the second half). This is the first home game for TFC II since it was announced that next year the team would be playing downtown at both BMO Field and Lamport Stadium (the other side of the railway tracks 1000 yards away). Also next year the tickets would be 'free' in that they are part of the TFC MLS season ticket package. Free tickets (by staying after TFC MLS games and a special open practice) have already taken place this season with a best draw of 3200 but that is something like 15% of what USL Cincinnati drew for some of their key games. Man of the Match (who is always a TFC II player) was awarded to defender Brandon Aubrey. I wonder if that decision was made before Shaan Hundal came into the game at 87 minutes and scored at 92 minutes? He took the place of Ben Spencer whom I'm sure I wrote his number down at most twice for being involved in a play and he was anchoring the forward line with Jordan Hamilton. Referee David Barrie gave out five Yellow cards tonight (three to Saint Louis) with one at 6 minutes curbing the rough play until an injury time dust-up when he gave one each to StL Ivan Mirkovic and TFC Ryan Telfer for a multi-player pushing match. Both goalies Angelo Cavalluzzo and Devala Gorrick played well tonight with Gorrick especially helped by his defence clearing countless crosses sent into the box by Ryan Telfer, Jordan McCrary, and Tsubasa Endoh—until that 92 minute hiccup. TFC (MLS) vets defender/winger Ashtone Morgan (100+ MLS games), second year winger Tsubasa Endoh, and forward Jordan Hamilton are settling in fine with the USL team. I don't what will happen to them next season with the MLS club finding a player from Liechtenstein to jump right into the starting eleven. A tie result is an identical script to TFC's last home game against Charleston Independence exactly three Wednesday's ago when Jordan Hamilton scored an injury time tieing goal down at BMO Field. Then on Saturday night they came back from 2-0 down in Charleston to win 3-2 scoring three goals against a ten man team but between that they lost two more road games. I was wondering who TFC II would start in net. Cavalluzzo was a good choice but Mark Pais who has played about half their games was goalie for Saint Louis last season so I thought he'd be an insider for the spot tonight. I received a TFC tweet earlier today that Clint Irwin has been 'loaned' to TFC II for the time (TFC have a week off from their MLS schedule and hasn't played a game for quite awhile). Actually Gianluca Catalano was the backup goalie tonight. TFC (MLS) player Justin Morrow was under a canopy near the entrance signing autographs on picture postcards before the game. I was one of the first there and said "You're still left handed!" as I'd seen him at a TFC BBQ a few years ago. I said I saw him at the Gold Cup (for the USA) and said it's too bad he wasn't named for this week's World Cup Qualifiers. He had a three year gap (2014 and 2017) between call ups. Other celebs were first team goalie Alex Bono who was on the field holding a dog in his arm talking to Saint Louis defender Wesley Charpie at halftime. Charpie played for TFC II last season. He was an unused sub at that time but came in at 58 minutes. Some fans behind me were talking about League 1 Ontario and wanting to get out to a game but "...I wish there was a team in Scarborough". I cut in and gave him two choices and named the stadium. Conveniently Oscar Cordon (L1O Woodbridge Strikers/ex TFC) walked by and I pointed him out also showing them where Strikers played--400 yards southwest of here. After the game the TFC II players came over to the fence to chat with the crowd (one of my favourite things about their games here). I asked teenage defender Julian Dunn-Johnson who didn't get in the game tonight what name he wanted me to use when I write about him. "Dunn-Johnson" is his choice although the game program has him as "Dunn" maybe not to confuse him with Malik Johnson a teenage midfielder. Both started out on L1O Toronto FC III at the beginning of this season. I said I hoped he got his place back which he lost after a Red card hand ball call two games ago. Maybe Brandon Aubrey will overdue it on the espresso coffee products that he won tonight as man of the match...Ben Spencer won them last their last road game and sleep walked through tonight's match. Alex Adamo, my TFC II ticket rep, came around the crowd at halftime giving out red/yellow novelty cards which double as reminders for the web site for a draw for a KIA car. I said that I find it such a surprise that the winner will own the car while the MLS team the lucky one will win a one year lease on the car. Alex admitted that the TFC II winner will also just win a one year lease (option to buy after that). I've never heard that fact in the promos. I've been using that prize story all year while pumping up the team. In other news TFC owners MLSE just signed a new contract to rename the Air Canada Centre 'The Scotiabank Arena' for the next forty years for 800 million dollars! Meanwhile my Scotiabank branch was only two blocks away closed last year and now I can go twelve blocks away plus they raised their service charges. Now I see how they're be spending the money they're saving. The result improves TFC II's record to 5 wins, 14 losses, 7 ties for 22 points which still leaves them fifteenth (last) in the Eastern Conference. Saint Louis improves to 8 wins, 11 losses, 6 ties for 30 points and are eleventh in the East. Their playoff chances dropped by 5.1% to 22.9%. They move on to play Ottawa Fury this weekend. TFC II chances are rated less than 0.0% and fell last night. Next home game for TFC II is this Saturday--September 2 at 7:30pm here against Rochester Rhinos. I expect to miss my first home game of the season as I have just been press accredited earlier today for the Canada vs Jamaica national teams friendly at BMO at exactly the same time. Rocket Robin robing@eol.ca twitter @RocketRobin01
  12. August 26th Masters FA 0 Vaughan Azzurri 6 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o217.htm August 26th Aurora FC 0 Durham United FA 2 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o218.htm August 27th Toronto Skillz FC 2 Ottawa South United Force 1 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o219.htm August 27th Woodbridge Strikers 2 North Toronto Nitros 2 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o220.htm
  13. Friday August 18 Durham United FA 2 Vaughan Azzurri 4 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o207.htm Saturday August 19 North Mississauga Panthers 2 ProStars FC 0 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o208.htm Sunday August 20 North Toronto Nitros 3 Toronto Skillz 1 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o209.htm
  14. Sunday August 13th Toronto FC III 2 North Toronto Nitros 3 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o194.htm Sunday August 13th Toronto Skillz 3 Windsor TFC Stars 0 http://www.rocketrobinsoccerintoronto.com/reports17/17l1o198.htm
  15. August 14th, 2017 e-mail to me as I'm a TFC II season ticket holder: Dear TFC II Season Ticket Members, I’m writing today to let you know that next season TFC II will be relocating from the Ontario Soccer Centre to downtown Toronto. The City of Vaughan and Ontario Soccer Centre have been valuable partners and supporters of the club the last three seasons and TFC would like to thank everyone for their support. I would also like to thank you, our Season Ticket Members, for your support of our Young Reds. The venue for the 2018 season has not been finalized but we do know TFC II will be playing home games at BMO Field and Lamport Stadium and we look forward to seeing you there. For any questions regarding this move please contact Alex Adamo at Alex.Adamo@mlse.com or 416-815-5313. Thanks again for your continued support and we hope to see you at TFC II’s next home match on Wednesday, August 30th vs. Saint Louis FC. All For One, Bill Manning President Inconvenient for me as more 90+ minute TTC commutes each way rather than a 30 minute drive.