Toronto FC vs. Santos Laguna: Your Running Commentary

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Toronto FC kicks off their quest to become the second straight MLS team to reach the CONCACAF Champions League finals tonight when the Reds welcome Mexican power Santos Laguna to BMO Field for the first leg of their semifinal tie (8 p.m., Fox Soccer Channel/Telefutura).

TFC reached the semifinals by springing a surprise on the favored Los Angeles Galaxy, and based on the last couple of results without the injured Torsten Frings, it's going to take a top-notch effort from TFC to get by Santos Laguna, which routed the Seattle Sounders in the second leg of their quarterfinal tie and boast an impressive strikeforce that includes in-form American striker Herculez Gomez.

Toronto's much-maligned defense could receive a bit of a boost with the return of Canadian centerback Adrian Cann, who is available off the bench to see what would be his first action since tearing his ACL last May, if called upon. Luis Silva and Joao Plata are other options that are on the bench for coach Aron Winter, while Danny Koevermans, Ryan Johnson and Nick Soolsma spearhead a front line that will look to give TFC an attacking boost and an edge heading into the return leg in Mexico.

If you will be watching tonight's match, please feel free to share any thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below. Enjoy the action.

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74 Responses to Toronto FC vs. Santos Laguna: Your Running Commentary

  1. chris says:

    It hurts me to root for TFC

  2. A Coach says:

    same

  3. sandtrout says:

    You know, I’m going to break down and just root for Santos Laguna. The fact that Herculez is their scoring star is justification enough for me. Not to mention that Torreon is a lot closer to where I live than Toronto. And that Santos is really, really good.

  4. JrLaing23 says:

    You can always root for a 4-3 TFC win in which Herculez scoring 3 for Santos Laguna.

  5. Jay says:

    Watching Santos play I doubt LA would have done any better maybe a tie or a 2-1 win at home, then get steam rolled in Mexico. That said MLS is almost there the cap get around 5mil plus dps then we can stand toe to toe with the FMF.

  6. Polo says:

    Gomez just keeps scoring.

  7. Shounen Bat says:

    Herculez….he’s so hot right now

  8. Polo says:

    What the hell?! The officials just carded the Toronto player for trying to take a free kick early.

    That’s ridiculous.

  9. chris says:

    F*ck DP’s. Look how bad Klovermans and De Guzman are. MLS needs to focus on youth development not bringing in FORMER stars that contribute two years at most. When MLS teams prefer developing talent over buying has beens for “veteran experience” then MLS will be able to go toe to toe with FMF.

  10. chris says:

    Didnt mean to sound angry at you my comment is directed toward MLS, sorry

  11. Jay says:

    True but Chris what league does that completly. The EPL buys their talent so does most of Europe. I agree that developing talent is important but so is buying it. Real Madrid bought their way to the top so has PSG and Man City. With more money MLS teams can buy quality defenders which the league lacks so bad. MLS teams can score they just can’t play defence against top competition.

  12. ld says:

    koevermans scored 8 goals in his first 10 mls games you moron..you think thats not good?

  13. Jay says:

    Lol its cool I get frustrated myself. MLS is so close but won’t open the purse strings more to close the gap. Why a 5mil cap is unreasonable I will never know. I think development helps but it isn’t enough. We need super teams to take on the FMF let alone the world.

  14. fieldsy says:

    Plenty of empty seats at BMO field, what a change from seeing the support for the Galaxy series!

  15. Jay says:

    Maybe because Santos has no superstar that’s well know outside people on blogs like this lol. Other then that I have no idea I guess its raining so maybe that.

  16. chris says:

    Like i said one good year. Look how fat he is now. Can Barely play 45 minutes. No i do not think he is good

  17. Jay says:

    And you have to take in account that MLS defence are over all bad. LA when healthy is good RSL as well. But most are average to bad.

  18. Polo says:

    Santos player blocks a shot with his hand and nothing is called?

    Regardless of intent, the player gained a real advantage from that handball, it should be a penalty.

  19. Polo says:

    Thought that definitely should have been a penalty until I saw the replay. I can see why the official didn’t give him that, there wasnt much contact and the Santos player just threw himself to the ground.

  20. Jay says:

    Red card? I don’t know.

  21. beachbum says:

    TFC MUST take advantage here.

  22. Al says:

    Red for Santos? Really?

  23. Jay says:

    OK never mind red card warrented.

  24. Polo says:

    I won’t even call that a tackle. He clearly tried to seriously injure him. That should result in a very long CCL ban.

  25. Jay says:

    I thought it was 50/50 I until he kicked out in the end.

  26. Polo says:

    Yeah, it was 50/50 until the ball was gone and the Santos player decided to raise his boot and jam his studs into the Toronto player’s knee cap.

  27. Jay says:

    Right.

  28. Jay says:

    That’s dissapointing TFC played it safe your up a man if your going attack this is the perfect time.

  29. Polo says:

    WOW WOW WOW

    Santos players attacking security and Toronto FC staff members and players.

    They are going to have the hammer dropped on them by CONCACAF. Wow.

  30. bryan says:

    Crazy stuff!

  31. Maybe they just forgot to get in the biting and face-punching during the game. That’s how most central american teams do it. But after the final whistle, swap shirts and shake hands, no fisticuffs please.

  32. Jort says:

    Wtf was that?!?

    Santos players started attacking Toronto players and staff.

  33. Dan Rude says:

    Did anyone see why Quintero got red carded? They didn’t show it on Univision?

  34. Dan says:

    An MLS ref and two reds for Santos? Good job!!!….Santos will handle toronto easily at home, Mares and Quintero are not really key players.

  35. Polo says:

    He started a freaking brawl, jacked a Toronto player after the whistle and then went after the official and then Toronto staff members.

    Then other Santos players started going at the officials and staff.

    It was ridiculous.

  36. Over/Under on number of Toronto FC players still on the pitch at full time in the second leg? I say 8 – both goalkeepers get sent off for picking up 4 yellows for “time wasting”

  37. Mike says:

    What’s the score?

  38. Polo says:

    Game ended at 1-1.

  39. Jay says:

    Most likely lol. Even though both cards were deserved. And more suspensions could come down because of the fight.

  40. Tjones says:

    What exactly happened?

  41. Jay says:

    Santos player got physical after final whistle then got a red. That sent him into a rage and he started fighting TFC players who fought back then the benches came in and then security it got ugly.

  42. John says:

    Mares and Quintero are not key players?

    Both are starters. Especially Quintero who was injured for a while which is why Gomez has been playing. Herculez is a bench player when everyone is healthy.

  43. Ossington Mental Youth says:

    Uh its Koevermans and he was a beast at the end of the year last year with 8 goals in 11 games. Hes been a bit slow the first two games but that doesnt mean anything

  44. HoBo says:

    Concacaf has no spine so nothing will happen to santos players starting the fight after the game

  45. Ariel says:

    So I came here to see what you guys thought of the game but let me tell you, in Mexico we saw a localist ref that was letting everything go by. Nobody expected better from an MLS ref.

    Never mind the two plays, one per side which were really close to being penalty kicks. What we saw was constant, blatant violent tackles which should have been kept in check by the ref, when he finally carded a player it was a Santos player (Crosas) in a play which was waaaaaay less violent than a lot of the Toronto fouls.

    The first red card should have been on both sides, your player just came straight in to kick the Santos player, the ball was totally out of his reach. This left the Santos players really mad, you could see it in the very next play when Quintero was called for a foul when he had been pushed around 4 or 5 times in about 10 meters, IN THE SAME PLAY, Quintero was already hot and protested really loudly. He should have been carded but the ref had no control of the game anymore.

    By the time the final play came, more fouls, including one on Suarez that was yet another play where a Toronto player should have been carded (can’t tell you who the players are, I know 2 or 3 of them), the game was totally out of control. Quintero was fouled, he responded and, as always happens in these cases, only the second foul was noticed by the side judge. Quintero was, probably correctly, red carded.

    Everyone down here knew the fight was coming, the ref made sure it would happen, the TV commentators mentioned it as well. BTW, the detonator of the fight was the Toronto trainer who touched Quintero. If players from Santos are banned, that trainer and the ref need to be banned as well And WTH was security doing ON the field? That only happens in 3rd-rate leagues. That was a provocation as well.

    The Sounders played basically the same way, the ref helped them too, why? MLS is, allegedly, a professional league.

  46. sandtrout says:

    I guess I’ll have to rescind my decision to root for Santos. :(

  47. Cholmondeley Warner says:

    Considering Mexico’s the country that produced Archundia I’ll give your opinion of referees the respect it deserves.
    The Toronto trainer was trying to protect Morgan who was on teh ground from Quintero who had already been sent off and therefore should’ve been leaving the field not remonstrating. Lets be honest Santos are lucky they behaved like that in a civilized country, I’m sure if they’d tried that in certain Concacaf countries they’d be running the gauntlet back to the airport.
    You’re probably going to go through anyway so just be happy with the result and stop whinging.

  48. Me says:

    Are you sure that’s what you saw, or are you finally seeing a Mexican side get called for their stupid and dangerous antics?

  49. Jay says:

    If your post wasn’t so dam funny I’d almost take you serious. A Mexican fan complaining about one sided officiating. That’s like the pot calling the kettle black. Nobody gets more home cooking then you guys so shut the hell up and stop bitching.

  50. Judging Amy says:

    You’re right. Officiating in Mexico is much better.

    link to youtube.com

    The ref and ARs on that play made the brave decision not to produce any cards on that play.

  51. Judging Amy says:

    ugh…if you’re going to be a turncoat at least commit man.

    (just playing btw)

  52. Ezra says:

    I couldn’t help but notice that as soon as the fight broke out, Morgan jumped up and started running around like he was perfectly fine…

  53. Moe says:

    they only showed about 2 seconds of the post-game brawling on espn deportes esportscenter

  54. KC says:

    Headline from mediotiempo.com: Santos played against 12 and ended with 9
    MLS referees do not belong in international competitions

  55. daniel says:

    I doubt that was a Mexican ref since it was Mexico vs USA.

  56. daniel says:

    Link please!

    Most soccer fans like to feel like victims. When their teams are favored they ignore it but when the ref makes an error against them its a conspiracy. So my advice to everyone, is just enjoy soccer and don’t let it help you show your stupidity.

  57. Al says:

    You just insulted most American fans

  58. Sepp Blatter says:

    This isn’t about MLS refs being bad. Salazaar has tons of experience. The reds were deserved.

    Santos has a precedent for violence. There was the Copa Libertadores brawl in 2011, the Santos vs Monarcas shooting in 2011, and now this. This has to stop.

    Even if you feel you have been wronged in the worst way, as a representative for your club, your fans, your city and potentially your country, you must not sink to the level that we saw from Santos tonight. There’s no room for it in any sport. Violence is not an answer – it’s only the shortcut you take when you’re too dumb to think of a solution.

  59. Judging Amy says:

    True. That game was in the US. Its atrocious officiating in Mexico’s favor regardless.

    If I was a Santos/Mexican fan I wouldn’t come on a US board whining about the refs after that classless display by Santos.

    That’s the biggest problem with Mexico’s soccer culture. I understand getting heated on the pitch and lashing out, okay. But afterwards their fans, and even some Mexican coaches/players b**** and moan about it, blame everyone but themselves, and take no responsibility for their classless actions. Has Oswaldo Sanchez ever explained what the heck he was doing on that ridiculous play?

    As intense as the rivalry can get Mexico’s a very good team, they’ve got a very good soccer league, and great players, I just wish their fans and some of their players would respect the game and themselves a bit more.

  60. Dan says:

    mares isn’t a starter Baloy, galindo, estrada, and ibanez are Santos starters at D, Quintero wasn’t starting anyways he was luduenas sub

  61. Ricky B. Free says:

    Mexico is in north america. God US education failed.

  62. Ricky B. Free says:

    LOL Man if you are going to post some proof at least get the right one.

    I know that TFC is going to get the COncacaf ref treatment when they play in Mexico. I just hope that they dont get raped like the Sounders.

  63. Ricky B. Free says:

    Are you an idiot or you just play one on the internet?

    The santos vs Monarcas shooting? Really? The teams had nothing to do with the shooting.

    It was a shooting between the police and some cartel.

  64. sandtrout says:

    This is not over! Upon further review (actually watching the game, most of it on fast-forward), I am going to rescind the decision to rescind the decision to support Santos. At this stage, I don’t really care who wins.

  65. sandtrout says:

    It’s good to hear an opinion from over there. I can see where it felt like the decisions were one-sided in favor of Toronto, but I don’t think the tackling was nearly as bad or one-sided as you’re saying. You’re just lucky Toronto can’t finish! Should have been 3-1.

    The brawl, I think, was pretty much a one-man thing. Quintero’s a young guy, he’s a little guy who got pushed around, he was outplayed much of the game by Morgan, he got angry at the ref. Overall, he just got frustrated and lost his cool in a completely immature way.

    Everything outside of Quintero was handbags, as they call it in England, though a little more vigorous than usual. I don’t think anybody did anything outrageous other than Quintero.

  66. HoBo says:

    This is very typical of a team from Mexico, everyone knows it nothing new. Lots of cheap shots and dirty play! It can come from mls teams as well but not nearly to the same degree!!

  67. Judging Amy says:

    haha ikr.

    yeah unfortunately i think tfc is going to get stomped in mexico. santos doesn’t need the refs or unsporting behavior to beat them. hope i’m wrong.

  68. Maico says:

    Probably more to do with the run-up to the game. They only had two weeks to sell tickets to this game, compared to months for the previous series.

  69. Ossington Mental Youth says:

    18k guy, we seat 21k. Did not bad for a rainy weds in march

  70. Ossington Mental Youth says:

    Dude, he wasnt a localist ref, we’re from Canada, hes from the US. Welcome to our world, concacaaf has been pooing on us for years. BTW yer goal was way off side. You can thank the ref for that.

  71. Ricky B. Stupid says:

    If it was called the “Santos vs Monarcas” shooting, and Santos and Monarcas are teams, why does it have nothing to do with the teams?

    I think the point is, Santos has consistently provided an environment for violence, whether it is done by Santos, by their fans, by other fans, or by people just trying to take advantage of Santos.

  72. Ricky B. Free says:

    Go ahead you can call me stupid so you can feel good about making idiotic or stupid remarks.

    Santos didnt provide a violent environment, they are not the police, cartel or government. If you cant understand this then you are stupid in real life and not just in soccer blogs.

  73. Ski Fast! says:

    TFC doesn’t have a chance now that they’re heading to Mexico tied 1-1 :(