TFC finds its way to San Jose

RYAN WOLSTAT, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 3:57 PM ET

TORONTO - A week is not a long period of time, but it's a lot better than the mere hours Toronto FC had to come together before last week's 1-1 draw with Chivas USA.

As would be expected, the Reds looked quite disjointed after five players made their season debuts last week two of which, Tony Tchani and Danleigh Borman were instantly inserted into the lineup after coming over in the Dwayne De Rosario trade. All but Julian de Guzman were making their TFC debuts.

Since then, the team has had a much-needed slate of training days together and while things will still take time, expect the Reds to look more organized on Saturday night when they take on the San Jose Earthquakes.

TFCs defence has been its poorest element through the first three games of the season and the backline will face its biggest test yet in the form of Chris Wondolowski.

The Golden Boot winner scored 18 times last season, leading the Earthquakes to the playoffs and has continued to find the back of the goal so far in 2011.

Also worrisome for TFC the fact Simon Dawkins and Khari Stephenson both scored in last weeks 2-2 draw with Seattle. As well, Steven Lenhart traditionally a thorn in the side of TFC should make his San Jose debut.

If Wondolowski continues to get help, beating San Jose and its excellent Canadian head coach Frank Yallop will be difficult. With the sturdy Los Angeles Galaxy in town on Wednesday, a positive result in California is a necessity for the Reds.

The return of defender Mikael Yourassowsky from suspension should help since he has looked very effective so far.

In addition to shoring up the defence, new captain Maicon Santos and his mates will need to be better on the offensive side of things as well.

With De Rosario gone, chip-ins can no longer be bungled like they have been on a couple of occasions so far.

There simply isnt enough offence to spare.

Alan Gordon has played well up front and Javier Martina has wowed at times, but Alen Stevanovic has been underwhelming so far.

With a game under his belt, De Guzman should be better and an influential part of the outcome.

Tchani, the key piece of the De Rosario deal, had a strong debut last Saturday, playing the full 90 minutes. He and De Guzman have the makings of a nice pair in the middle of the field.

With more options at his disposal, it will be interesting to see what starting 11 TFC head coach Aron Winter opts to go with.

The return of Yourassowsky and a decent debut by Dicoy Williams could have an impact on the roles and minutes allocated to incumbents Adrian Cann and Nana Attakora, as well as newcomer Borman.


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