Toronto, ON (Sports Network) - Toronto FC's miserable start to the Major
League Soccer season continued on Saturday, falling to the Chicago Fire, 3-2,
at BMO Field to remain without a point through its opening six games.
The loss sees Toronto tie the 2001 D.C. United side for the second-worst start
to an MLS season. Should Aron Winter's men lose in their next outing, they will
tie the 1999 Kansas City Wizards for the record with an 0-7-0 start.
Dominic Oduro gave Chicago an early lead before both sides combined for three
goals in the span of five minutes. Reggie Lambe bagged a brace with goals in
the 36th and 40th minutes before Gonzalo Segares ensured a 2-2 tie going into
halftime. Patrick Nyarko provided the game-winner, converting on a breakaway in
the 58th minute.
Toronto did not get off on the right foot on Saturday as a giveaway out of the
back gifted Oduro a goal inside the opening minute. Torsten Frings, who
curiously made a start in the center of Toronto's defense, was caught in
possession by Nyarko, who played his strike partner in from close range. Oduro
made no mistake with the scoring chance, slotting a shot past Milos Kocic for
his third goal of the season.
But Toronto battled back and leveled through a brilliant strike from Lambe in
the 36th minute. The Bermudan took advantage of a poor punch from Chicago
goalkeeper Sean Johnson and ripped a shot from distance that sailed into the
Lambe then gave Toronto its first lead of the season four minutes later,
stuffing home a loose ball at the back post to rejuvenate the home side.
That lead only lasted one minute and 33 seconds though, as a pinpoint set-piece
delivery from Sebastian Grazzini was met by a brilliant flick from Segares to
cap a thrilling first half with plenty of two-way action.
The game-winner came with Nyarko and Oduro connecting once again. Oduro
collected a pass from Logan Pause and promptly played a through ball to find a
streaking Nyarko. The Ghanaian latched on and went around Kocic before calmly
slotting home his first goal of the season.
Toronto pushed tirelessly for a later equalizer, but the Fire defense was up to
the task as Johnson's heroics ensured all three points for the visitors.
Both sides return to action on April 28 with Chicago (2-1-2) welcoming Seattle
Sounders FC to Toyota Park and Toronto (0-6-0) heading to Real Salt Lake in
search of its first points.