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Crew v. Toronto: Notes and Grades

The Crew were largely unimpressive in their 1-0 road win, but an ugly three points is better than a decent showing and zero (ahem, vs. Colorad).

Jamie Sabau

A worse performance than against Colorado, but vastly different result.

  • The Toronto defense has serious issues as they gave Federico Higuain plenty of time and space to work with. Higuain made them pay with several great passes and two shots that rang off the woodwork.
  • Matias Sanchez shows a considerable ability to both see and make the incisive offensive pass. He got Higuain the ball in a perfect spot to see the field ahead of him and feed Oduro on the goal.
  • The Crew found the best offensive success when Oduro and Higuain shifted into the channels. Justin Meram was anonymous most of the game and Eddie Gaven drifted in and out of the game a little more than usual.
  • Columbus needs more out of the left wing position. Meram and
  • Finley haven't laid claim to the spot with Meram being especially poor in Toronto. A consistent Ben Speas would give the Crew a threat to take pressure off of Higuain.
  • Tony Tchani struggled to pick out the right pass, nothing unusual there, but he also struggled to complete passes even when he picked one out. Tchani needs to keep the ball far better than he did to be useful.
  • The defense struggled initially with Robert Earnshaw. Eric Gehrig started off especially poor, but recovered to put in a good outing. He'll likely get another start with Marshall out.
  • Glauber continues to tally significant foul counts. He had five, one also a yellow. That's often the sign of a defender that is a little slow to get to their spot. Five yellows on the season puts him out for New York

Gruenebaum (6): Safe hands and excellent positioning ensured he was ready when tested.
Williams (6): Much steadier performance than weeks previous as he put in a yeoman's effort at right back.
Gehrig (6): Struggled early in the game with Earnshaw, but
Glauber (5): Consistently a little slow, a little late. Picked up his fifth yellow card and will be suspended for New York.
Wahl (5): Solid, but wasn't tested often. Did dispossess Braun to start the counter-attack goal.
Sanchez (7): "Be quick, but don't hurry". Sanchez is often seeing the play and getting where he needs to be, but without the over-aggressiveness of last week.
Tchani (4): Solid defensive play, but consistently struggles connecting the right pass. He also fails to execute on simple passes at times too.
Gaven (5): Solid work on both sides of the ball. He got into some dangerous positions and fed some solid passes.
Higuain (7): Rang the crossbar and the post. His passing was pinpoint sharp. Game changing performance.
Meram (4): Lost for large sections of the game and gave up the ball with terrible passes. Missed a prime chance to make a mark in first team action.
Oduro (6): Consistently made excellent runs into the seams of the TFC defense and was rewarded.
Finley (5): Improvement over Meram with better energy, but didn't make too much of an impact as the Crew were playing rearguard action.
Barson (5): Solid defense after Wahl came out injured.
Schoenfeld (5): High energy holdup player. He did earn his foul as he attacked
Coaching (5): Injuries forced most of his decisions and individual performances from Oduro, Sanchez, and Higuain were the difference makers rather than anything X's and O's.

Note on Grades: I have set 5 as an average performance. The player had both good and bad events on the field. Under 5 is a disappointing performance. Above 5 is a notable performance.