Toronto Wins Canada’s First MLS Cup

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( — December 14, 2017) — It has been a long time coming but finally, the MLS Cup is coming North of the American border up to Canada and to nearly men Toronto FC. They had a heartbreaking defeat last season to Seattle in the final where they matched the American side blow for blow but were eventually beaten on penalties. After that, there were one of two ways that Toronto could react. They could have been crushed and defeated, ready to throw in the towel and admit they were just never going to break the US stranglehold on the cup. Or they could dust themselves down and go again.

One of the most famous recent occurrences in soccer in England happened during a playoff game between Leicester and Watford. Leicester had a last minute penalty that would have won them the chance to get to the playoff final. They missed and not only did they have to suffer the pain of throwing away a chance they also conceded straight away. Watford hared down the other end and scored which dumped Leicester out of the playoffs and took Watford to the final. Like Toronto Leicester were left at a similar crossroads but they fought on the next season and won automatic promotion. Toronto, in finally winning the cup, proved they had similar resolve and drive.

The game against Seattle was, unsurprisingly, a tense one with both teams looking more to avoid losing than grabbing the game by the scruff of the neck and taking it to the opposition. One of the issues with playoff games is that, usually, one defeat, one mistake or one moment of madness can cost you your whole season. The plus side to the playoffs of course is that surge of adrenaline in the knowledge that a win can make you a legend. It’s the kind of feeling you get when you win at the all slots casino, a surge that makes you feel like you are the king and that you have achieved something magic. Very few things in life can give you same feeling as winning at slots or scoring a goal in a big game.

Thus, it took a while for the game to really open up and for either team to create great chances. Last seasons final, of course, did not have any goals as neither side managed to put the ball in the back of the net. When the clock ticked over and reached the hour mark, it looked like we might have a similar issue. Neither side had scored and extra time was looming. Both teams needed a hero and Toronto’s came in the shape of Jozy Altidore. The American striker had struggled outside of MLS but is a proven goalscorer in this part of the world and he managed to beat the offside trap and give his side the lead. After scoring the goal that took his side to the final it was appropriate to see him open the scoring.

Seattle huffed and puffed in search of an equalizer but the Canadian side held firm and continued to repel last year’s cup winners. Finally, as the game stretched into stoppage time and its final moments, midfielder Victor Vasquez put the icing on the cake, scoring in the 94th minute to ensure the cup was coming to Canada. It was a great moment for Toronto FC and Canadian sport in general.