Captain Liam Fraser scored twice and Brandon Onkony added a goal in stoppage time as Toronto FC III battled back from an early two-goal deficit to draw 3-3 with Italian side S.S. Maceratese on Match Day 1 at the 69th Viareggio Cup on Monday at Centro Giovani Calciatori Capezzano Pianore.
After some questionable calls, TFC III found themselves down 2-0 just four minutes into the match. Once the team’s nerves settled down, Coach Danny Dichio’s TFC III dominated and dictated the rest of the match. Fraser scored his two goals 12 minutes apart to level the match on 67 minutes. S.S. Maceratese recaptured the lead in the 73rd minute, but TFC III’s perseverance paid off when Onkony tapped in a loose ball from short range to complete the comeback and earn the team a well-deserved point.
Up next for Toronto FC III in the prestigious youth tournament are nine-time Viareggio Cup champions Juventus FC (Italy), on Wednesday, March 15 with kick-off set for 3:00 p.m. CET (10:00 a.m. ET).
Toronto FC III (3) vs. S.S. Maceratese (3)
S.S.M – First Half 2’
S.S.M – First Half 4’
TFC III – Liam Fraser 55’
TFC III – Liam Fraser 67’
S.S.M – Second Half 73’
TFC III – Brandon Onkony 90’ + 3’
S.S.M – First Half 32’
TFC III – Liam Fraser 59’
S.S.M – Second Half 60’
S.S.M – Second Half 85’
Lineup Toronto FC III – Phil Di Bennardo; Nikola Stakic (Steven Furlano 63’); Brandon Onkony, Robert Boskovic, Andrew Dias (Luca Petrasso 75’); Aidan Daniels (Daniel DaSilva 75’), Luca Uccello, Liam Fraser ©, Matthew Srbely (Marco Mandekic 53’); Malik Johnson, Shaan Hundal
Substitutes: Gianluca Catalano, Dante Campbell, Rocco Romeo, Julian Dunn, Kota Sakurai, Nicolas Osorio, Kunle Dada-Luke
Following a dominant 5-1 victory over L.I.A.C. New York in a friendly match on Saturday, the Toronto FC III players, coaches and staff gathered and watched the first team as they played to a 2-2 draw against the Philadelphia Union. On Sunday, the players were given free time to enjoy and experience the beauty and culture of Viareggio. After early morning meetings with the coaches, the team resumed their training regimen by going for a light afternoon jog and stretch. The players culminated the session with another eight-minute plunge in the frigid Ligurian Sea to help with recovery.
Coach Dichio assembled the group and taught the boys to play various Italian card games. It was an exciting and entertaining night filled with laughter and a healthy competitive spirit. The evening concluded with an amazing local Viareggio dinner that featured an array of fresh fish dishes. After a fun-filled night, the team returned to their rooms to get a good night’s rest for match day one on Monday.