Saturday, March 10, 2007

Toronto shut out Connecticut 4-0

From Toronto Media Relations:

Toronto FC arrived back in the Sunshine State on Monday March 5th for another two weeks of training at the Bradenton IMG Academy.

Thursday, the team played its second game at the Academy against the University of Connecticut and finished 4-0 winners under ideal conditions, sunshine and no wind.

Newly acquired Goalkeeper Jon Busch started the first half for the squad, along with a veteran eleven.

Toronto was on the board in the 27th minute when Alecko Eskandarian made a nice weaving run inside the box to beat keeper Matt Sangeloty to open the scoring. The former D.C. United player was the victim of a nasty looking sliding tackle in the centre circle minutes later. He did stay in the game but was substituted out in the 32nd, that saw Abbe Ibrahim enter the game. Eskandarian left with slight cramping in his calf as a result of the challenge. The first half ended with Busch making a nice save near the end of time.

There were no changes to start the second half of the match, except in goal where Greg Sutton took over the duties.

TFC hit the scoresheet again in the 54th, as Ibrahim finished off a nice passing play from Paulo Nagamura, and Edson Buddle.

After Toronto went up 2-0 - a mass substitution was made as the entire 11 was subbed off to make way for some fresh legs, made up mostly of the young players.

Andrea Lombardo scored for the second game in a row in the 70th when he put in a long pass from Ivan Cadavieco who has just joined the team on a trial.

The final touches were put on this match ten minutes later, as Canadian U-20 product A.J. Gray sent in a great cross from the right that was put in by the Spanish born Cadavieco to make it a 4-0 final.

"I was very impressed with the way Jon Busch handled himself, I thought he was very professional, "said Head Coach Mo Johnston. "We're playing competitive, and not giving up goals which is always good."

Johnston would like to have a fully fit team, and at the moment he doesn't with Ronnie O'Brien (knee), Marco Reda (quad), and Maurice Edu (pelvis) all out of action.

On Tuesday, Toronto played their first game of this trip against Creighton. Andrea Lombardo was the goal scorer in that one as well as Sutton and Tomer Chencinski combined for the shutout.

Carl Robinson has joined the team for this leg of camp before he heads back overseas to attend to Wales National Team duties.

"On the ball he's quality, he strolled through it, he's playing at 50%", said Johnston. The coach also had high praise for Nagamura, and some of the younger players that are "coming along nicely".

The players were given Thursday afternoon off to enjoy the pool, or the beach. Training resumes at 10am Friday morning, and there are no more games scheduled until Monday March 12th, when they face the U.S. U-17's.

Toronto FC Starting XI: GK - Jon Busch (Greg Sutton 46), Andrew Boyens, Adam Braz, Chris Pozniak, Jose Cancela, Jim Brennan, Paulo Nagamura, Maycoll Canizalez, Carl Robinson, Alecko Eskandarian, Edson Buddle

Substitutes Used: Stephen Lumley, Jamaal Smith, Hunter West, Richard Asante, Joey Melo, A.J. Gray, Abbe Ibrahim, Ivan Cadavieco, Andrea Lombardo, Conor Casey

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