As the playoffs beckon closer, can Toronto FC get back to the postseason, or will they miss out for the second straight year?
With just over two-thirds of the MLS season in the books, Toronto FC are in a pickle. One point out of a playoff spot with ten matches remaining, TFC could easily make up that ground and return to the postseason for the first time since they won MLS Cup in 2017.
They could also just as easily falter and miss the playoffs, meaning that the club with the highest payroll in the league and the core of a championship team still intact would be left out of the big dance for the second straight year. Another year without late October soccer in Toronto could also mean the end of the line for manager Greg Vanney.
Either way, TFC find themselves 10 matches away from either big games or big decisions. Let’s see what’s in store for the Reds over the next few months.
Their next match (excluding their upcoming Canadian Championship clashes with Ottawa Fury) will be at BMO Field against Orlando City. Orlando is just three points behind the Reds, so a win for the visitors would see them come level with the Reds on points.
While this match can’t be considered a must-win with nine matches to follow, it’s as close to it as it gets in mid-August. In TFC’s only previous meeting with Orlando this season, the Reds battled the Florida heat en route to a 2-0 victory. A similar result would be both a massive boon to TFC’s playoff hopes and a serious blow to Orlando’s.
Meaningless prediction: 3-1 Toronto FC.