Toronto FC beat the New York Red Bulls 2-1 on the road to open their MLS Eastern Conference semifinal playoff series. Victor Vasquez put Toronto up in the 8th minute with Daniel Royer equalizing from the penalty spot three minutes into first-half stoppage time. Seb Giovinco won the game with a 72nd minute goal. The series concludes on Sunday at BMO Field (3pm ET - ESPN).
"You have to know how to win on different type of nights in different ways," Toronto midfielder Michael Bradley said. "I think we’ve shown we can do that. Again, these are different kind of games and the teams that understand that, the teams that don’t let that phase them, are typically the ones who give themselves the best chance. It’s a great result, but it’s only half-way done. We’re not celebrating anything yet. We understand that we have to go back to Toronto in front of our fans on Sunday afternoon and play in a way from the beginning that ultimately means they have no chance."
Houston and Portland opened their Western Conference semifinal series with a 0-0 draw at BBVA Compass Stadium. Video replay reversed a penalty call for Houston in the 31st minute with both teams finishing with two shots on goal. Portland had to make two changes due to injury prior to the start of the game and used all three of their subs on injured players. The series resumes in Portland on Sunday.
“Yeah, under the circumstances we'll take it," Portland coach Caleb Porter said. "Our goal was to come in and win, but we also talked about if time ran out we'll take a draw as well. We're a very good home team, we score goals at home, and we're going to need to do that in the second leg to win. But I think under the circumstances, we'll take the result. What I mean by circumstances is the playing field and then, obviously, the three injury subs, two in the first-half."