thumbnail Hello,


  • June 15, 2011
  • • 8:05 PM
  • • Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Massachusetts
  • Referee: R. Salazar
  • • Attendance: 6680

New England 0-0 Toronto FC: Midweek stalemate

New England 0-0 Toronto FC: Midweek stalemate

Gail Oskin

While the Bruins were winning the Stanley Cup, the New England Revolution hosted Toronto FC and played out a scoreless draw.

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. - It wasn't quite the Stanley Cup.

While the Boston Bruins and Vancouver Canucks were playing Game 7 just miles away, Major League Soccer's bottom-dwellers New England Revolution and Toronto FC played to an uneventful 0-0 draw at Gillette Stadium.

Early in the match possession was held by New England, but Toronto carved out some chances against the run of play.

In the 15th minute, forward Joao Plata had a decent effort on New England keeper Matt Reis, but the effort was pushed outside.

From that point on Toronto lacked any sharpness offensively. It looked as though the visitors were holding out for a draw even in the first half.

"They came and they were wasting time," New England midfielder Sharlie Joseph said. "The goalkeeper was wasting time on goal kicks 10 minutes into the game, that should give you an idea of what they came here to do."

New England altered its style of soccer, with head coach Steve Nicol trying out a 4-4-2 formation, and it was clear that the change was working. The offense played several decent balls towards the new forward tandem of Rajko Lekic and Kenny Mansally, and both players tried their luck early, but to no avail.

Still, the early offensive pressure was something the Revolution have lacked in recent games.

Throughout the match the Revolution couldn't finish any opportunities on net. There was decent service being put into the box, but nobody could come up with the final touch.

One such opportunity came from a great cross by Kenny Mansally in the 71st minute. Mansally stole the ball off the Toronto defense and saw Rajko Lekic in front of the goal. The cross was on target, but Lekic could not finish the best chance of the night.

Toronto began to gain more possession at the tail end of the second half and play became chippy. In stoppage time, substitute Gianluca Zavarise picked up a second yellow card and was ejected.

The home team tried to capitalize on the man advantage, with Joesph blasting a wonderful strike from 25 yards out, but the ball was pushed over by Toronto keeper Stefan Frei.

Steve Nicol felt that his team improved, but that it still needs work.

"We are almost (there), but almost doesn't get you goals," he said. "We put pressure on them, which we wanted to do. We wanted to make it hard for them and we did that."

New England's formation seemed to be the right fit for them, the team just missed one or two more creative elements, especially with Benny Feilhaber injured. Going forward the team should be boosted by newcomer Ryan Guy who was on the bench, but is not 100 percent fit. Guy would slot in at right midfield and may provide better service than what the team has recently seen.

You can follow Justin Churchill on Twitter here

Keep updated with Major League Soccer by visiting's MLS page and joining's page.