TFC pays for missed chances

Toronto FC Peri Marosevic failed to convert breakaways in goals in the teams' 1-0 loss to FC Dallas...

Toronto FC Peri Marosevic failed to convert breakaways in goals in the teams' 1-0 loss to FC Dallas in Toronto, August 25, 2011. (Dave Thomas/QMI Agency)

KURTIS LARSON, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:45 PM ET

TORONTO - Peri Marosevic distanced himself during Thursday’s post-game.

With TFC’s 1-0 loss to FC Dallas still fresh, the former Hoops’ prospect appeared shaken while sharing responsibility.

“I’m disappointed,” Marosevic said. “I should have (scored).”

On no less than three occasions to be exact.

After scoring in his debut against Portland, the pleasant surprise was cut down to size when he failed to convert clear chances against his former side.

“We should be mentally focused in the box.” he said. “Like I said, I feel disappointed in myself.”

In addition to fanning on an attempt from close range, Marosevic failed to convert breakaways on each side of halftime — glorious opportunities that should have given TFC a share of the points.

After acquiring the 22-year-old following his release, his ability to create timely runs is a positive in the absence of Danny Koevermans and Eric Avila — players that will likely replace Marosevic in the coming weeks.

And Thursday was simply more of the same from a club that fails to capitalize as often as it concedes.

When TFC travels to Dallas for its final CONCACAF match this season, the kid will likely get another shot up front — another golden opportunity to stick it to the club that said he wasn’t good enough.

“Obviously Dallas is a good side,” Marosevic said. “But I think we respected them too much.”

ANSWERING THE CALL

Canadian head coach Stephen Hart named Julian de Guzman and Terry Dunfield to his roster for a World Cup qualifier against St. Lucia in Toronto on Sept. 2.

The pair will travel to Puerto Rico four days later.

In addition, Javier Martina accepted an invitation from Curacao after featuring at the youth level for the Netherlands as recently as 2008. Curacao makes its first appearance against Antigua and Barbuda after receiving FIFA membership in March.

OFF THE PITCH

Good move by MLS to postpone matches with Hurricane Irene inching up the east coast. With the Red Bulls originally set to host the Galaxy in prime-time, the match will now gain the exposure it deserves on Oct. 4 … Already considered out of contention domestically, TFC became the first MLS side to fall in the 2011 CONCACAF group stage — a telling stat considering MLS clubs had won just five times previously in Mexico and Central America. Over the last month, MLS matched that production with five more wins south of the border … An MLS team sits atop each of the four Champions League groups after two games with TFC occupying second spot in Group C.

HOW ARE THINGS?

With Panama’s Tauro earning a shock draw at home to Pumas, the Reds were handed a lifeline.

After winning 2-1 at Tauro last week, as long as the Reds take three points from Tauro at home, Toronto will need just a point from two matches with Pumas.

With a little help, those results could set up a must win situation on the final day of Champions League play at Dallas on Oct 18 — a result that might see them through to the knockout phase.

BATTLING FOR CONTRACTS

In hosting the San Jose Earthquakes tonight, the Reds have the rare opportunity of moving past an MLS side in the overall standings. The ’Quakes travel to BMO Field with just five wins — one more than TFC — in 25 matches.

Sitting just two points clear of TFC, the fixture pairs two clubs whose players are more than likely battling for 2012 contacts rather than playoff births.

The visitor’s come in undermanned and out of form on a club record 12-game skid.

While it’s a big ask for TFC to play its second match in just over 48 hours, San Jose is without three important pieces.

With TFC target Alan Gordon sidelined for the season and high-energy forward Steven Lenhart on leave, the ’Quakes have struggled offensively. To make matters worse, Chris Wondolowski is nowhere close to matching last year’s output — a season that saw the San Jose poacher score 18 times.

They’re also banged up at the back.

Out with a foot injury, ball-winning defender Ike Opara is a big miss for a club that lacks athleticism at the back. Opara’s absence should favour players like Joao Plata, Eric Avila and a familiar face in Johnson.

It was mid-July when the Reds orchestrated a deal that sent Jacob Peterson, Nana Attakora and Gordon west in return for the Jamaican — a deal the Reds got the better of.

Peterson and Attakora have seen limited time since joining the California club and come in nursing injuries. According to yesterday’s injury report, both should be available for selection, along with former TFC midfielder Sam Cronin.

As the Reds enjoy a two week break following tonight’s match, head coach Aron Winter won’t hold back despite the Reds playing on unprecedented short rest.

The much fitter side, TFC appears set to continue its decent domestic home record.

But after watching former Reds Dwayne De Rosario and Dan Gargan gut the Reds in August, the hobbled ’Quakes might have more weapons than they realize - three former Reds who would love to continue the trend of former players burying the club that sent them away.


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