Johnston embarrassed

Toronto FC's Maurice Edu, called out for a poor effort, fights for the ball with Chicago Fire's...

Toronto FC's Maurice Edu, called out for a poor effort, fights for the ball with Chicago Fire's Dasan Robinson yesterday. (Sun Media/Ernest Doroszuk)

DEAN MCNULTY -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:30 AM ET

Toronto FC turned in its worst performance of the Major League Soccer season yesterday, falling 3-0 to the Chicago Fire at BMO Field.

The final score flattered the home side as, if it were not for some spectacular saves by emergency callup goalkeeper David Monsalve, Chicago could have scored half a dozen against a lethargic TFC.

What may be a worse sign for the struggling club is that the majority of its 20,322 usually die-hard fans poured out with 10 minutes left on the game clock.

The result left TFC tied for last place in the Eastern Conference with 19 points -- the same as Chicago.

Toronto FC manager Mo Johnston was livid after the game, blasting his team for what he perceived as a lack of effort.

"There's not one single player, other than Monsalve, who played well," he said. "They should be embarrassed. I know I am."

Johnston was particularly incensed at the play of forward Colin Samuel, midfielder Andy Welsh and rookie Maurice Edu.

"I told Colin right after the game that I thought he played poorly," he said. "He was out of position the whole game."

He said that Welsh -- an international with English premiership experience -- has been playing with half the effort he did earlier in the season.

"I don't know what has happened to Andy," Johnston said. "He just seems like he's gone into a shell. And Maurice had his worst game ever."

Johnston said it looked as if his club was using the excuse of injuries to key players for the performance.

Starting internationals Ronnie O'Brien, Jeff Cunningham, Marvel Wynne and Greg Sutton are all out with injuries and all are expected to be out for an extended period.

"It is unacceptable for anyone to use injuries as an excuse for what happened out on the pitch (yesterday)," Johnston said. "Our fans deserve better."

Chicago's goals were scored by Ivan Guerrero in the 37th minute, Calen Carr in the 58th minute and Floyd Franks in the 75th minute.

Mexican international Cuauhtemoc Blanco -- signed by Chicago for $3 million US -- made his first MLS appearance and provided an assist on the first goal.

With a week to get ready for the David Beckham show that makes its MLS debut next Sunday, Johnston had considered giving his players a day of rest today, but changed his mind.

"They've got to come together as a team," he said. "Some of those guys aren't training hard enough and it is showing."

Star striker Danny Dichio left the game because of a hip flexor injury and may not be ready to play against Beckham and the Los Angeles Galaxy.


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