Tired, still recovering from injuries and away from home, the trip to FC Dallas will be one to forget for Toronto FC.
After falling 2-1 against the Hoops at Toyota Stadium in Texas, Toronto FC head coach Ryan Nelsen lamented a missed penalty call, not to mention conceding a late winner in the 88th minute to Blas Perez, which saw his team finally lose after going 3-3-0 in the first six games of the season.
“This is football, you get what the final result gives you,” Nelsen told reporters via conference call after the game. “I feel bad for the guys because it was two set piece goals. The second one was a nothing goal, it was just sloppiness. It was frustrating because it was a good away performance up to that.
“You take your hat off to the first [goal] but the second one was nothing special,” Nelsen said. “We should have dealt with that. To see that was very frustrating.”
Toronto seemingly earned a chance to add a second of their own when Gilberto broke through and went one-on-one with the goalkeeper, only to be bumped from behind by a Dallas defender.
The referee didn’t award a penalty, however, much to the frustration of the TFC bench.
“In my opinion it was a ridiculous decision not to give that penalty,” Nelsen said. “He just pushed him in the back, pushes him over. It’s a remarkable decision not to give that penalty.”
“Referees are judged by the big decisions that they have to make and he fell short on a decision that should have been made,” he continued. “He’s just pushed him in the back; it’s a pretty easy call to tell you the truth. We have to take the brunt of that.”
Both Jonathan Osorio and Michael Bradley played the full 90 minutes, but neither had much influence on the match. Nelsen was pleased that his two players, both returning from injuries, saw out the entirety of the game, though.
“[Bradley] hasn’t trained in a while, same with Jonathan Osorio,” Nelsen explained. “We’re running on fumes in terms of what we have available for options. It’s great they both got through the game and now we’ve got a couple weeks where we can get a rest, get healthy and move on.”
Nelsen is already looking forward to the bye week that gives his team a chance to recuperate and regroup, and is also happy with the results from the first stretch of the season.
“With these six games, I would have taken [nine points] straight away,” Nelsen said. “With the injury crisis that we’ve had, that we didn’t even think was going to happen, I’d take it.”