Toronto FC’s 2023 Leagues Cup campaign has concluded following a 1-0 loss against Atlas FC at BMO Field on Sunday night.
Atlas FC took an early lead after forward Jordy Caicedo’s right-footed shot curled its’ way past TFC goalkeeper Sean Johnson in the second minute. TFC responded to the early conceded goal with several attacking plays. In the fourth minute, TFC winger Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty’s left-footed attempt was saved by Atlas FC goalkeeper Camilo Vargas. Less than ten minutes later, TFC midfielder Jonathan Osorio forced the Atlas FC goalkeeper to make a terrific save after a nicely struck attempt from outside of the box in the 13th minute. The Reds had another opportunity denied in the 26th minute when Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty forced the Atlas goalkeeper to make his third save of the game. With the game becoming much more offensively free flowing, it’s important to note that the physicality also continued to intensify as the half progressed. The first card was issued in the 34th minute when Atlas FC captain Aldo Rocha received a yellow card for fouling Reds midfielder Franco Ibarra. With the ensuing free kick, TFC defender Brandon Servania forced another save from the Atlas FC goalkeeper with his powerful strike from distance. As the opening half was coming to an end, the TFC defence were forced into action. In the 45th minute, Atlas forward Jordy Caicedo hit the post and TFC goalkeeper Sean Johnson made a terrific point blank save on the rebound attempt from Jorge Rodríguez. TFC’s Lazar Stefanovic sprung into action and cleared the final Atlas opportunity.
The Reds continued the second half in search of the equalizing goal. In the 56th minute, Raoul Petretta’s perfectly weighted through ball found Marshall-Rutty who forced Atlas FC goalkeeper Camilo Vargas to make his fifth save of the game. Just two minutes later, TFC introduced a double substitution to help generate more offence. One minute after coming onto the field, TFC midfielder Kosi Thompson picked up a yellow card for a late challenge. In the 66th minute, recent TFC summer transfer acquisition Latif Blessing was subbed out due to a potential injury. Reds Goalkeeper Sean Johnson made his third save of the game when he denied Atlas forward Christopher Trejo’s attempt in the 80th minute with a strong right hand. The rebound from Johnson’s save was crossed to midfielder Juan Zapata, who attempted a bicycle kick that rung off the TFC crossbar. Just a few minutes later, the TFC defence was tested once again as TFC midfielder Alonso Coello made a successful goal-line clearance in the 86th minute.
Unfortunately for the Reds, an equalizer was not to be found in this game.
With the result, TFC’s 2023 Leagues Cup campaign ends after finishing third in Group East 3. The Reds return to action on Sunday, August 20th at BMO Field vs CF Montréal.