Joao Plata Makes Ecuador Debut

Toronto midfielder earns first international cap for his country at BMO.

BMO Field, TORONTO - Toronto FC forward Joao Plata made his Ecuador senior team debut at BMO Field on Wednesday night, at the very park where he is now a firm fan-favourite among his club supporters.

Plata seemed to get a ceremonial stoppage time run out from head coach Reinaldo Rueda with Ecuador leading 2-1, but his 92nd minute entrance was quickly overshadowed by a Canadian equalizer through Tosaint Ricketts.

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A foul called outside the Ecuador area was under protest from Plata’s national compatriots. That’s when his Toronto teammate Julian de Guzman quickly restarted the play, catching Ecuador off guard. Ricketts finished the play with the fourth and final goal of an entertaining affair.

Plata came through the ranks of Barcelona SC in his hometown of Guayaquil in Ecuador. He made his professional debut for LDU Quito before signing with Major League Soccer on-loan. Toronto FC drafted Plata 49th overall at the 2011 MLS SuperDraft after trading goalkeeper Jon Conway to Chicago in exchange for that pick.

The 19-year old Ecuador international made his Toronto debut on April 2.  Plata will remain with his national team for another friendly in New York against Greece on June 7. He could rejoin Toronto for the club's away match in Los Angeles on June 11.