Soccer·Recap

Toronto FC stuns Vancouver with late goal to win Canadian Championship

Will Johnson shocked the crowd at BC Place with a strike in added time that found the netting and gave Toronto FC the series edge on aggregate over the Vancouver Whitecaps.

Reds claim national title on aggregate after Will Johnson scores in added time

Toronto FC win Canadian Championship with late goal

Sports

5 years ago
1:59
Will Johnson scores in injury to lift TFC to victory with an away goal. 1:59

Will Johnson scored a goal late in added time as Toronto FC snatched the Voyageurs Cup out of the Vancouver Whitecaps' hands on Wednesday.

The game ended with Vancouver ahead 2-1, but the two-game, Amway Canadian Champion series ended in a 2-2 draw with Toronto winning the Voyageurs Cup on aggregate due to its away goal.

"We put everything into it," said Johnson, a Canadian international. "We played our strongest lineup every single game. We went for it."

The series was decided when Toronto's Tsubasa Endoh sent a ball into the box. Vancouver goalkeeper David Ousted went to handle the ball but collided with defender Kendall Waston. The loose ball rolled to Johnson who blasted it into the net.

"You just take a chance," Johnson said about the goal. "When the ball was in the air I had a good feeling it might bounce, something is going to happen.

"I just wanted a look. I just put my foot through it, tried to connect well. Obviously it happened at a great moment for us and our club."

Also in added time, Blas Pérez beat Reds goalkeeper Alex Bono with a shot but it banged off the far post and trickled away. The goal would have likely sealed a victory for Vancouver, but fate would not allow it in this back-and-forth affair.
Toronto FC's Benoit Cheyrou was named the tournament's most valuable player.

Defender Tim Parker, in the 68th minute, and midfielder Nicolas Mezquida, in the 47th minute, had given Vancouver a 2-0 lead. The crowd of 19,376 at Vancouver's BC Place were on their feet convinced the Whitecaps would defend the title they won last year.

Toronto opened the final with a 1-0 win at BMO Field on June 21. Forward Sebastian Giovinco scored the lone goal in the 43rd minute.

In the second leg, Parker thrilled the crowd with a goal in the 67th minute that started on an innocent looking play. Midfielder Matias Laba lofted a long ball into the box. A streaking Parker took the ball off his chest, then fired a left-footed shot past the Toronto goalkeeper.

Before that, Mezquida put Vancouver on the board in the 47th minute. Just minutes after subbing in for the injured Russell Teibert, he took a cross from defender Jordan Harvey and headed the ball into the net past Bono's outstretched fingers. 

The score was 0-0 at halftime, but the Whitecaps had several good scoring chances.

The best came in the 40th minute when Laba found the ball at his feet in the box and blasted a shot, which Bono dived to stop.
Toronto FC's Benoit Cheyrou holds the Voyageurs Cup after the Reds beat the Vancouver Whitecaps on aggregate to become the 2016 Canadian champions. (Darryl Dyck/Canadian Press)

Atomic Ant nearly strikes

Giovinco, who is also known as the "Atomic Ant," had two good chances for the Reds.

Waston earned a yellow card for a hard foul on the Italian in the 33rd minute. Giovinco took the free kick and curved a ball that Ousted managed to stop.

In the 10th minute, Giovinco finished a long run with a low, hard shot that just missed the goal.

The Whitecaps advanced to the final with a 3-2 aggregate victory over the Ottawa Fury. The Whitecaps lost the opening game 2-0 in Ottawa but demolished the Fury at home at week later.

Toronto opened their semifinal series against Montreal with a 4-2 home victory, then settled for a 0-0 draw on the road to advance to the final.

TFC played without goalkeeper Clint Irwin who will be out six weeks with a quadriceps strain suffered last weekend.

With files from CBC Sports

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