Greg Cunningham scored in the 88th minute for Toronto FC giving them their first victory of the season over the Los Angeles Galaxy. Toronto’s lack of scoring last year was well chronicled and things did not fare any better to start the 2008 MLS season, as their offense sputtered in their first 2 games scoring only one goal. But on Sunday, in L.A. no less, Toronto scored 3 goals to give them the victory.
Cunningham scored the game-winning goal from the top of the penalty area on a shot that found the back of the net. Cunningham came into the game in the 65th minute for Danny Dichio. Asked about the slow progress of the Toronto offense until Sunday head coach John Carver stated, “We’re trying to build something and things don’t happen overnight.”
In the 55th minute the Galaxy (1-2) tied the score at 2-2, as Landon Donovan scored on a penalty kick. The game was knotted at 0-0 for much of the first half, as Toronto looked like the team they have been for the past season with no offense. However in the 42nd minute Dichio received a great pass from Amado Guevara and found the back of the net giving Toronto FC a 1-0 lead. L.A. responded only a minute later, as Landon Donovan scored his second goal of the season off an assist from Chris Klein.
In the first half both clubs had 6 shots on goal, but the Galaxy had better chances but could not convert. Donovan also missed an easy goal, as the goal was empty but he pushed his shot left of the post. Donovan said after the game, “I’m disappointed in myself because I had three chances that would have changed the game.”
Toronto took the lead shortly after half in the 53rd minute, as Jarrod Smith shot past the Galaxy goalie from just inside the penalty area for the 2-1 lead.
L.A.’s David Beckham was not very effective in the game and had only one shot in the game from 29 yards out. Beckham stated after the game, “We lost our (discipline) in the second half, some of it to the heat, but the majority of it by giving the ball away. That’s when the problems started. Then they started passing the ball around us and they created chances.”
Both teams are now 1-2 on the season. It will be interesting to see if this was just a one-game wonder for Toronto FC or it will kick start their offense that they have been searching for when they made many changes in the off season.