Reserves Leave It Late In Draw
Comprised of non-starters, a trialist and guest players, Toronto FC drew New England Revolution 1-1 thanks to a 90th minute goal by Nikola Paunic in MLS Reserve League action on Saturday night at BMO Field.
The outcome reversed what was witnessed earlier at the stadium, when New England's starters clawed back from a 2-0 deficit to level 2-2 against Toronto in a first team MLS affair.
The visitors opened the scoring at the 32nd minute when Michael Roach found himself at the top of the box against an advancing Quillan Roberts in the Toronto goal. Roach neatly placed the ball to Roberts' left side, tucking it inside the far post.
Toronto had its chances in the opening frame. Oscar Cordon skied a shot from inside the area at the 17th minute, before Keith Makubuya did the same six minutes later.
New England dominated the half and were worthy of their 1-0 lead at intermission. Prior to the Roach breakthrough, Sainey Nyassi had a close-range effort go along the goal line and out to safety.
At the restart, Toronto came out with renewed vigour with Efrain Burgos Junior in particular having a go at the Revs' goal repeatedly.
Two minutes into the second half Burgos had an attempt go over the bar. Four minutes later the first-year TFC player went in close again, only to hit the side netting. He made it a hat-trick of chances at the 62nd minute when a set-piece caused havoc inside the New England box only to be cleared by a defender.
The Revs nearly doubled their lead at the 55th minute, but for Roberts clearing a ball off his line after making a fine save.
Toronto continued to charge for the equalizer, winning successive corner kicks as the final whistle neared. Just as the clock hit the 90th minute mark, Paunic found the ball at his feet, turned and fired it from 15-yards, gaining a favourable deflection on way to beating Bobby Shuttleworth for the 1-1 draw.
New England now holds a 2-2-2 record in the Eastern Division, ahead of Toronto (1-3-2) in the Reserve League.
Toronto and New England meet again on September 10, this time south of the border.
32' New England - Michael Roach
90' Toronto - Nikola Paunic
38' Toronto - Keith Makubuya (caution)
45' Toronto - Oscar Cordon (caution)
67' New England - Darrius Barnes (caution)
80' Toronto - Nikola Paunic (caution)
86' New England - Sainey Nyassi (caution)
Toronto - Quillan Roberts; Aaron Maund (**Roberto Galle 61'), Dicoy Williams, Logan Emory (**Nikola Paunic 45'), ***Alberto Giuliatto; Efrain Burgos Jr. (**Ryan James 73'), Oscar Cordon, Matt Stinson, Luis Silva (**Sergio Camargo 56'); Reggie Lambe, Keith Makubuya
New England - Bobby Shuttleworth; Tyler Polak, John Lozano, Darrius Barnes, Alec Purdie; Jeremiah White (Fernando Cardena 23'), Ryan Guy (Diego Fagundez 71'), **Nick Hoffman, Sainey Nyassi; ***Kyle Hall, Michael Roach ... Unused substitutes: ***Sotiri Varlokostas; **CJ Burnham
* Guest player
** Academy Player