TORONTO, ONT. – Chivas de Guadalajara got a huge win in the first leg of the 2018 CONCACAF Champions League on Tuesday night. They defeated Toronto FC on the road 2-1 thanks to some timely finishing from Rodolfo Pizarro and Alan Pulido. Toronto played well but struggled to finish.
Alex Bono Mistake Gives Toronto FC 2-1 CCL Final Leg One Against Chivas
Chivas came out the better side in the opening minutes. The visitors worked the ball down the wing, earning multiple throw-ins. After a good build up, a simple low cross by Isaác Brizuela into the box found Rodolfo Pizarro and he scored. No Toronto player attacked the ball, nor marked either player particularly well.
Shell-shocked by an early road goal, Toronto pushed to get back into the match. It was the homegrown hero Jonathan Osorio in the 19th minute who got the Reds back into the match. After some excellent passing, Osorio found a cross from Marco Delgado and banged it in at the far post.
Toronto pushed for a second goal, with Jozy Altidore getting several good opportunities including one that went off the post. Sebastian Giovinco got several free kick chances and Drew Moor of all people had a sitter in the second half.
The home side could not capitalize on their chances and it would cost them. In the 72nd minute, Chivas got a chance on a free kick. Alan Pulido sent a teardrop into the box. It was misjudged by goalkeeper Alex Bono and sailed over everyone and into the back of the net.
Under pressure and frustrated, Toronto wasn’t able to get back into the game. The match ended 1-2. The second leg will take place in Guadalajara next Wednesday night.
Three Things I Noticed:
The little moments mattered: Toronto FC had several moments of defensive breakdowns and individual mistakes. Several players were at fault in the first goal on a play that seemed harmless until it went in. Bono could have done better on the second goal. Chivas showed up in those moments. Toronto did not.
Jozy wants a few of his chances back: Altidore had several chances, especially in the first half that he could have done better on. In the 33rd minute, some great tiki taka passing in the box led to a chance for Altidore that he shot right at goalkeeper Miguel Jimenez. Just before halftime, he set a shot off the post. On a better day, Altidore would have had a brace.
MLS needed this and couldn’t get it: An argument can be made that Toronto FC is the best team in MLS history. They’re one trophy in 2018 away from making an argument as being an MLS dynasty. They are an MLS team deserving of being the first to win CCL and make a statement for the league. And Alex Bono and the team blew it in the first leg.