It's do or die for TFC

FRANK ZICARELLI, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:47 AM ET

By his own recollection, last weekend proved to be a first for veteran midfielder Carl Robinson.

And by all accounts, Robinson hopes it was the last.

In the wake of accumulating yellow cards, Robinson was forced to miss TFC's away game in Seattle, where the Reds settled for a 0-0 draw.

With his family off in the United Kingdom and no national team duties to fulfill, Robinson spent the weekend alone in his Toronto-area abode doing something he seldom does.

"It was strange because I don't watch many games of football,'' Robinson recounted yesterday following TFC's practice.

"I watched five MLS games on the computer and every game I wanted the result to go our way went against us.

"I'm not going to do that again."

With what Robinson terms as the "nitty gritty'' stretch to TFC's season, the third-year Reds continue to eye the franchise's first post-season berth.

Toronto's trip to Seattle wasn't pointless because it did return with a point.

In the big picture that is the MLS playoff race, Toronto lost ground because virtually every team in contention for the league's four wild cards produced results.

The Reds do control their destiny entering a crucial home-and-home set with Colorado.

With the regular reason rapidly closing in, a sweep of the Rapids, beginning with this Saturday's away contest, would go a long way in validating Toronto's post-season hopes.

"The next two games will make or break our season,'' Robinson predicted. "If we can pick up six points, we're flying. If we can't, obviously it'll be difficult for us."

Robinson is by no means a certainty to suit up this Saturday night.

During yesterday's gathering at BMO Field, Robinson turned his right ankle on the always-problematic pitch in what was a very harmless play as he battled for possession in a drill.

For a guy who turns 33 next month, it wasn't exactly what the doctor had ordered.

Robinson and TFC will know in the next few days how the ankle reacts to treatment.

The last thing Robinson wants is to have two weekends off, but he sounds like someone who will do whatever is necessary to get back on the field.

With so few games left, Robinson can feel the urgency.

"Maybe if (Saturday's) game was earlier in the season, a draw would be a good result,'' Robinson reasoned. "But at this stage, we need a win."

Columbus (39 points) and Chicago (38) are well on their way to securing the two guaranteed playoff spots in the East. Out West, Houston (40) and Los Angeles (38) have separated themselves from the pack.

That leaves Seattle (34), New England (33), Colorado (33), Real Salt Lake (33), Chivas USA (33), D.C. United (32) and Toronto (31) jockeying for playoff spots.

FRANK.ZICARELLI@SUNMEDIA.CA


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