Toronto FC eliminated from MLS playoff contention with shutout loss to Orlando City

Toronto FC was eliminated from MLS playoff contention with a whimper Saturday, outclassed in a lopsided 4-0 loss to Orlando City.

CF Montreal, Whitecaps earn key victories on Saturday

Toronto FC came into Saturday's game knowing a loss at Orlando City would eliminate it from playoff contention, with a tie also ending post-season hopes depending on results elsewhere. (@TorontoFC/Instagram)

Toronto FC was eliminated from MLS playoff contention with a whimper Saturday, outclassed in a lopsided 4-0 loss to Orlando City.

Facundo Torres and Ercan Kara gave Orlando a 2-0 lead by the midway point of the first half. A Toronto own goal by Lukas MacNaughton made it 3-0 early in the second half before Canadian Tesho Akindele rubbed salt in the wound with a goal off the bench in the 84th minute as the Toronto defence was cut open again.

Toronto (9-16-7) came into the game knowing a loss at Exploria Stadium would eliminate it from playoff contention, with a tie also ending post-season hopes depending on results elsewhere.

Toronto also missed the playoffs in 2021 when the club finished 26th in the then-27-team league with a 6-18-10 record. TFC finished second overall in the league in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season at 13-5-5 but was ousted by Nashville in the first round of the 2020 playoffs.

Before that, Toronto made it to the MLS Cup final in 2016, '17 and 19, winning the title over Seattle in 2017.

But the glory days are far behind the club with coach Bob Bradley, who took over last November, overseeing an overhaul of the roster that is likely to continue in the off-season.

TFC's playoff elimination is bad news for Canada coach John Herdman, given it means that defenders Richie Laryea and Doneil Henry and midfielders Jonathan Osorio and Mark-Anthony Kaye will be idle at club level after the regular-season finale Oct. 9. The World Cup kicks off Nov. 20 in Qatar.

WATCH | Toronto FC officially eliminated from playoffs:

Toronto FC shutout in Orlando, officially eliminated from playoffs

6 months ago
Duration 0:33
Orlando City defeated Toronto FC 4-0 Saturday night and with the loss, Toronto will miss MLS postseason.

Laryea, Osorio and Kaye are headed to Europe to join Canada for exhibition games against Qatar and Uruguay during the coming FIFA international window. Henry is nursing a hamstring issue.

Toronto, which wraps up the season at home to Inter Miami on Sept. 30 and away at Philadelphia on Oct. 9, entered weekend play in 13th place in the Eastern Conference, six places and seven points below the playoff line.

Orlando (13-12-6) started the day in fifth place in the East. The shutout was its ninth of the season, setting a single-season club record.

CF Montreal keep 1st-place hopes alive

Alistair Johnston scored his fourth goal of the season on a gorgeous, 72nd-minute counter-attack to lift streaking CF Montreal to a 1-0 victory at the New England Revolution on Saturday night.

Djordje Mihailovic and Romell Quioto both assisted on the counter, which finished with a goal that sent Montreal to its sixth consecutive away victory and keep their hopes alive of finishing atop the Eastern Conference and earning a first-round bye.

Montreal (18-9-5, 59 points) is guaranteed to finish no worse than second, and is now five points back of East leaders Philadelphia, with both teams having two games remaining. The top finisher in each conference receives a first-round bye in the 14-team MLS Cup Playoffs.

With New England (9-12-11, 38 points) entering the match with its playoff hopes on the line, the Revolution were outshot 18-10 overall, though they did tie Montreal in efforts on target and force Sebastian Breza into three saves.

The 2021 Supporters' Shield winners began the night in 10th in the East, three points behind seventh-place Columbus, which now has two games in hand entering tomorrow's home match against Portland.

New England has lost three in a row for the first time since a four-match losing run that spanned late March and early April.

WATCH | Johnston lifts CF Montreal over Revolution:

CF Montreal shut down Revolution

6 months ago
Duration 1:23
CF Montreal defeated New England Revolution 1-0 Saturday night in MLS action.

Whitecaps beat Sounders, preserve playoff hopes

The Vancouver Whitecaps once again kept their playoff hopes alive Saturday with a 2-1 win over the Seattle Sounders.

Pedro Vite opened the scoring in the 29th minute and Julian Gressel doubled Vancouver's lead eight minutes later as the Whitecaps (11-14-7) beat their regional rivals for the first time in more than five years.

Will Bruin responded with a goal for the Sounders (12-16-3) in the 89th minute.

Goalkeeper Thomas Hasal stopped two on-target shots to collect his fourth win of the season for Vancouver and Stefan Frei made three saves for Seattle.

The result vaulted the Whitecaps over the Sounders (12-16-3) to ninth spot in Major League Soccer's Western Conference.

Vancouver still sits two places and three points below the playoff bar with two games remaining in the regular season. Seattle is four points and three spots out of a post-season berth.

WATCH | Whitecaps jump ahead of Sounders in standings:

Whitecaps keep post-season hopes alive with win over Sounders

6 months ago
Duration 2:06
Vancouver downs Seattle 2-1 Saturday night and leap ahead of Sounders in standings.

The 'Caps were coming off a 3-0 victory over the L.A. Galaxy on Wednesday while the Sounders had not played since beating Austin FC on Sept. 10.

The impact of the packed schedule showed at times in the second half, with Seattle pressing hard and Vancouver's players occasionally looking gassed.

Former Whitecap Fredy Montero set up Seattle's lone goal of the night in the 89th minute, sending a ball into the penalty area where it glanced off Bruin's head and into the net.

With files from Field Level Media

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