TFC -V- Columbus : Rally in the Rain
TFC’s 374 day winless streak at BMO is over! A two goal burst in the final ten minutes from Jonathan Osorio and Andrew Wiedeman sent the fans home happy despite the torrential rain that accompanied and some might suggest inspired, this late rally.
It looked like a case of “same-old same-old” in the opening stages of the first half as TFC, despite being the better side, coughed up a furball and allowed Columbus to take an early lead. Joe Bendik, often the hero of the hour for TFC should have done better as Sanchez setup Oduro on the edge of the TFC box in 17 minutes. [singlepic id=12079 w=320 h=240 float=right]His low drive to the keeper’s near post beat the normally reliable stopper and nestled in the net for the lead. Against the run of play? certainly! Unexpected? not really !!!
The rest of the first half was mired in mediocrity. TFC still had the upper hand courtesy of some nice ballwork in the middle from Laba, Osorio and Convey but up front we yet again lacked ideas and Columbus only looked threatening when Oduro got the ball. Coach Nelson made two substitutions at the half with Lambe replacing Hall and Wiedeman replacing Braun who looked like he may have been struggling with a knock towards the end of the first half.
[singlepic id=12104 w=320 h=240 float=left]The announced crowd of 17987 had thinned out considerably when the rain started in the final third of the game, and when it got heavier with just 10 minutes to go, it seemed that another disappointing afternoon would be compounded with everyone squelching their way back to TTC/GO or their cars dejected, miserable, and soaked ….. BUT something seems to happen to TFC in the rain … the crowd always gets a lift, starts singing louder as if to say “F*** it!” to mother nature, the mood lightens in direct correlation to the sky darkening and somehow we play better !!! We have no stats to back it up, just personal experience … be it the midweek Houston game back in season 1, the ‘miracle in Montreal’, or more recent games – eventually called off – against Vancouver and Dallas .. it just happens.
[singlepic id=12105 w=320 h=240 float=right]And so it was. As jacketless fans in the stands got soaked but sung louder, Bobby Convey, a player who is turning into a bit of an unsung hero with his quiet effectiveness in recent matches, started a move that ended up with Brockie flicking on to Osorio and the youngster drilled a left foot shot past the helpless Gruenebaum from just inside the box. His 4th goal of the season also brought his first yellow as he celebrated by taking his shirt off as he ran to the corner flag to celebrate …. 3 minutes to go – could TFC do it? Damn right!!
With fans in the South End almost unable to see the far end because of the strength of the downpour, and the game entering the 4th minute of stoppage time it looked like there was time for a final attack. Again it was Bobby Convey who started the move and put in a cross which Andrew Wiedeman managed to get to. He stuck out a leg and fired the ball into the far corner past the Columbus keeper … the TFC players and fans celebrated wildly and clung on for about a minute longer until referee Ismail Elfath blew that final whistle …. The squelchy walk back through the TTC/GO station was not so bad after all ……
A couple of spooky stats from this game ……
- Referee for this match was Ismail Elfath …. he was also the ref on July 18th 2012 – the last time we won at BMO !!
- Andrew Wiedeman scored the winner in this match – he also scored the winner in the last win at BMO !!!
And a couple of firsts ….
- Jonathan Osorio received the first yellow card of his TFC/MLS career. Pretty sure no-one will care as he (over) celebrated his goal that led our comeback.
- Alvaro Rey made his TFC/MLS debut as a sub.