MLS roundup: TFC blow 3-0 lead in CLB; SEA lose 3rd straight
A roundup of, plus a few quick thoughts about, all of Saturday’s action from Week 14 of the 2018 MLS season…
Columbus Crew SC 3-3 Toronto FC
For every instant classic ever played in sports history, there is one fanbase that will rewatch the highlights or full-game replay every time it’s on TV, and one fanbase that will never be able to stomach the sight of such a heartbreaking loss. Despite coming away with a point in the end, Toronto FC’s 3-3 draw away to Columbus Crew SC will haunt fans and players alike as the worst result of the (league) season thus far.
It was 1-0 after 17 minutes (Victor Vazquez, from the penalty spot), 2-0 after 38 minutes (Tosaint Ricketts), and 3-0 after 57 (Sebastian Giovinco’s latest piece of free-kick magic). The three-goal advantage remained intact for nearly 10 minutes, at which point it began to slip away… quickly.
Gyasi Zardes made it 3-1 with his ninth goal of the season in the 67th minute, Alex Crognale halved the remaining deficit in the 81st, and Federico Higuain converted from the penalty spot in the 90th minute to complete the improbable comeback — or, collapse from TFC’s perspective.
The gap between the defending MLS Cup champions and the sixth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, currently occupied by Orlando City SC, is eight points. Crew SC, meanwhile, fall to third in the East due to New York City FC’s resounding win over Orlando.
Real Salt Lake 2-0 Seattle Sounders
The Sounders’ 2018 season is only 11 games old, and already the two-time defending Western Conference champions have lost seven times, including their second three-game losing skid of the year following Saturday’s 2-0 loss away to RSL.
Rookie forward Corey Baird scored his fourth goal of the season in the 57 minute before Luis Silva secure a late insurance policy in second-half stoppage time to extend RSL’s winning run to three games. It’s the first time RSL have won three straight league games since April 2016.
Following a slow start to the season, Mike Petke’s side (22 points) suddenly sits third in the Western Conference, three points behind second-place Los Angeles FC and four back of first-place Sporting Kansas City. Seattle (8 points), on the other hand, must overturn a 12-point deficit separating themselves in 11th place and the Vancouver Whitecaps in sixth.
New York City FC 3-0 Orlando City SC
From winning six in a row to losing four straight, the tide has turned squarely against Orlando. Saturday’s 3-0 thrashing at the hands of NYCFC, who were without David Villa in the starting lineup, was a far more flattering scoreline than the game itself might have deserved.
Ismael Tajouri-Shradi continues to score goals, getting two more in the 35th and 79th minutes, and Maxi Moralez grabbed a third in the 87th.
Elsewhere in MLS
Atlanta United 3-1 Philadelphia Union
Portland Timbers 1-1 LA Galaxy
New England Revolution 2-1 New York Red Bulls
FC Dallas 2-1 Los Angeles FC
Montreal Impact 1-0 Houston Dynamo
Chicago Fire 2-1 San Jose Earthquakes