Sometimes it takes a little luck to survive road match and take points, and luck is what the Seattle Sounders rode at Toronto FC. That luck wouldn’t have mattered, though, without a confident, attacking performance and a team commitment to keep the ball away from Sebastian Giovinco as much as possible.
Even with their squad limited by injury and rotation, TFC created chances. Toronto and Seattle ended even on shots (12) and shots on goal (3), with a couple of the Reds’ first-half chances going off-frame when they normally wouldn’t.
When the Sounders did go down a goal, though, the response was immediate and lethal. Joevin Jones and Jordan Morris took advantage of a concentration lapse by their opponents to get Morris the ball running at goal in the box — a ball that Jordan tucked away in the side netting to equalize within seconds.
Seattle continued to attack late in the match, but couldn’t find another badly-needed win. However, points are points, and the Sounders are pleased at earning a draw on the East Coast.
SSFC are 5-9-2, -6 GD, holding strong at 9th in the Western Conference with 17 points.
Seattle Sounders FC 1 - Toronto FC 1
Saturday, July 2, 2016
Venue: BMO Field
Referee: Kevin Stott
Assistants: Adam Wienckowski, Philippe Briere
Fourth Official: Mathieu Bourdeau
Weather: Mostly cloudy and 77 degrees
TOR - Jordan Hamilton 60'
SEA - Jordan Morris (Joevin Jones) 61'
TOR - Marco Delgado (caution) 44'
TOR - Steven Beitashour (caution) 90'+2'
LINEUPS & STATS
Seattle Sounders FC - Stefan Frei; Tyrone Mears, Zach Scott - captain, Chad Marshall (Tony Alfaro 51'), Joevin Jones; Osvaldo Alonso, Cristian Roldan, Erik Friberg; Aaron Kovar (Herculez Gomez 85'), Jordan Morris, Andreas Ivanschitz (Nelson Valdez 70')
Substitutes not used: Tyler Miller, Oniel Fisher, Nathan Sturgis, Oalex Anderson
Total shots: 12 (Friberg/Kovar, 2)
Shots on goal: 3 (3 players, 1)
Fouls: 10 (J. Jones, 3)
Corner-kicks: 8 (Friberg/Gomez, 3)
Saves: 2 (Frei, 2)
Toronto FC - Alex Bono, Eriq Zavaleta (Raheem Edwards 88'), Damien Perquis, Nick Hagglund; Steven Beitashour, Tsubasa Endoh (Benoit Cheyrou 77'), Jay Chapman (Jonathan Osorio 70'), Marky Delgado, Mark Bloom; Sebastian Giovinco, Jordan Hamilton
Substitutes not used: Quillan Roberts, Drew Moor, Justin Morrow, Mo Babouli
Total shots: 12 (Giovinco, 4)
Shots on goal: 3 (3 players, 1)
Fouls: 12 (Delgado, 3)
Offside: 3 (3 players, 1)
Corner-kicks: 3 (Giovinco, 2)
Saves: 1 (Bono, 1)
SIGI SCHMID – HEAD COACH, SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC
Thoughts on the match.
"I think we’re happy with the point, we’re a fortunate team that we weren’t down in the first half. They had some great chances, chances that they probably would not normally miss. We’ve had so many games this year where we have been the dominant team, we haven’t finished our chances and coming out with that result, we’re okay with it. I was happy with the response of our team after we went down 1-0. I think our best phase in the game was when we equalized, it helped our confidence. But, at the end of the day I think Toronto was the better team."
Your thoughts on how you defended Giovinco?
"Not well, but what really is the key when defending a guy like Giovinco was to cut off the service. I was very happy when they took Endoh out of the game, I thought Endoh was serving the ball to Giovinco all the time, was really finding him, he was the one who was causing us the most problems because we couldn’t shut him down. When he came off the field it definitely helped us."
Is Clint going to be available next game?
"Yeah, our decision, I’ve been doing this for a long time, when I had players go into youth world championships, it’s better to give those players a little bit of time off when they come back. Otherwise you push them back too soon and they are just going to carry out injuries, they’re going to be lethargic. I’ve watched a couple of guys who came back and played right away and none of those guys look really good. It’s a mentally draining situation, I’m sure Michael Bradley can tell you the same thing. It’s better to give him his rest now so that he can hit the road with us running rather than push through this game and rest, push through this game and rest. That’s always been my philosophy, get the rest in and go from there."
JORDAN MORRIS – FORWARD, SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC
What are your thoughts on the goal?
"It was good to get a goal back right after they score. It was a great ball from Joevin (Jones), so all credit to him. It was a good response to bring some life back into the game."
Good tie for the club?
"This is a very good team; it is always tough to play on the road a little bit. Coming out of here with at least a point was great for us and now we just got to build off of this and move forward. Big game next weekend against LA, it should be fun."
First half you were all alone; you didn’t have much help up top. You battled all night long with Perquis. Can you talk about that battle and staying up by yourself?
"First half was tough for sure; they had a lot of possession. I think that’s a part of my game I need to get better at, with my back to goal and holding the ball up. Perquis is a great defender and he showed that tonight and he won a lot of balls in the air but you have to keep fighting and hopefully things will go your way eventually."
Did the feeling from the US Open cup on Tuesday move forward to this match do you think?
"Yeah, I think so. Especially in the second half we came out and showed that fight a little more and worked hard as a team. It was a great team result. Everyone worked super hard, battled and fought. When you are struggling a little bit, that’s what you have to do, just battle, fight it and come out with this result and the play will come and results will start coming more frequently. It was a great team effort."
STEFAN FREI – GOALKEEPER, SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC
Talk about your defence and how they stood up to Giovinco.
"We did well and I would say maybe in the first half he has that one attempt he wants back. Other than that I would argue even on the goal we do a somewhat decent job because we push him somewhat wide and allows me to come out and narrow it. Other than that he didn’t have too much and he’s a top notch player and for us to limit his opportunities I think we should take a little confidence from that."
Thoughts on your back line.
"I said this before and I maintain that we have depth in the back. Even though Tony (Alfaro) is young player but I don’t think you see it and I don’t feel it back there. He is very confident on the ball, calm, cool, collected so we have a good amount of players back there that can play and I’m not going to worry no matter who needs to step in."
From the 80th moment on the team was buzzing around, did it seem like you could get a game winner late?
"We had chances, a couple of crosses; one was pulled right off the line. Obviously we want to get all three points if possible but again we had that Open cup game, drew a little confidence from that, we should draw confidence from this game again as well. At this point draw confidence from wherever we can. I think shutting down Giovinco is something you should draw confidence from. So keep chucking away and adding that confidence and hopefully we can get something from every game now on."
How did it feel being back in Toronto?
"It felt good. A bit nervous, I have a lot fond memories here and know a lot of people here. This is still a city that is very dear to me. Met my wife here, still have a place here. The fans always treated me well; the organization treated me fairly well as well. Nothing but good memories, so I wanted to make sure I had a good game. Good to be back. This stadium is completely different these days so it was like playing in a new stadium but like I said it was good to back."
How did it feel in the new BMO field?
"It’s completely different but I think they did a good job. It looks fantastic and it’s a good atmosphere. It’s a very unique stadium as well. You have one side open and the other side has that flat roof. It’s a unique stadium and the fans are always exceptional so they always had that atmosphere that BMO field was famous for. It was good to be back on the pitch."
GREG VANNEY – HEAD COACH, TORONTO FC
Siegfried said that he felt fortunate and that you were the better team?
"I agree. I can extrapolate if you like. It’s really very simple, we had loads of chances, we left the first half, and especially we had a number of chances, really good looks at the goal that we got out of that half with something to show for it. The second half I thought likewise, we had some more chances at goal. At the end of the day it’s a game of execution in the boxes. For us we didn’t execute when we were in the box, they got into some dangerous spots. I thought most of those came when the game opened up and we were trying to push the 1-1, that’s when I thought they started to get a few chances across the face of our goal."
"Aside from that I didn’t think there was too much we had to deal with. But, yeah I thought we played great, over the course of the last 15 days we’ve played 5 games, every single player on our roster including Raheem got playing time. We got Mark Bloom back into the mix who hasn’t played a game in 18 months with the first team. I couldn’t be more proud of the group, the depth and the effort that they have put forth over the last 15 days."
Siegfried said he was happy when you took Endoh off as a substitute, he thought he was having a really great game, really giving Giovinco great service, can you explain what that means?
"In terms of the choices, I think Tsubasa had put in a ton of work he was starting to do a little less defensive work, having a harder time getting out of midfield into those deep positions. For me we wanted to try and stay aggressive as much as we could. With Marky we could push forward who hadn’t been doing the end to end as much he was in more of a defensive roll. When I shifted Marky in and put Ben in, he provides similar types of delivery to Tsubasa from those spots. He’ll play the ball over the top, play between lines, look for Seba, Marky would give us an extra kick at the end."
SEBASTIAN GIOVINCO – FORWARD, TORONTO FC
Thoughts on the match?
"We lost two points, we created a lot even though we didn’t score them all but we have to look ahead and think of our next game."
What has it been like playing with Jordan Hamilton?
"It is going well playing with him, he is still young and he possesses a lot of great qualities, not only in his play but also in his scoring, he is great for the future but also for the present."
MARK BLOOM – DEFENDER, TORONTO FC
Comments on your return
"It was a great experience for me, being out for so long, just the road to recovery, all the work I put in on the training ground in the gym all that stuff. And then finally have it culminate in 90 minutes is a surreal experience for me and just thinking back on how long it has been but once I got out there it felt like I never stopped so It kind of came back right away. I felt comfortable out there, it was a big step to build on, just to keep going and getting better and better from here."
When did you find out and how did it feel?
"Yesterday right before training. I was excited; I didn’t know what to think. It kind of made sense, so many guys have been hurt, and I have been back to training for a solid week. I have been training good and feeling good, so I think it was good time to get me in and give Justin a break, he has been working and has been tired. Obviously I was just excited to get the start."