April 13, 2007 Toronto FC vs New England Revolution preview (from Globe and Mail)

POSTED ON: 13/04/07
Toronto FC casts eye on Revolution
From Saturday's Globe and Mail

Toronto FC head coach Mo Johnston lists some of the coaches for whom he has played and there are several that could be considered among the best of their time.

Johnston played for Alex Ferguson and Jock Stein among others. And while they may take different approaches to winning, Johnston said they all had something in common.

"They're all winners," he said. "They come at it from every different angle.

"I'm going to tell you there's a passion and hunger inside them that's second to none and that's what I want to instill in our team and that's what I want from our coaches and from me."

Toronto FC, a new team in Major League Soccer, will play its second regular-league game Saturday night at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass., still looking for its first goal as well as its first victory after losing 2-0 last Saturday to Chivas USA in Carson, Calif.

Saturday's home team, the New England Revolution, is also looking for its first goal of the season after losing 1-0 to the Chicago Fire last weekend.

And if Johnston is looking for hunger and passion from his team, the Revolution has those things in a big way after coming so close to winning the MLS championship before being thwarted. They have reached the MLS Cup final three of the past five seasons without winning it.

The Revolution's most recent and probably most bitter disappointment came last November in the MLS Cup when the Houston Dynamo won on penalty kicks. The Revolution had taken the lead in extra time but the Dynamo tied it up slightly more than a minute later.

It was the first time the Revolution had scored a goal in the final.

"Of all the finals, this was the hardest one," midfielder Steve Ralston told the Boston Globe. "We had the lead with seven minutes left. Seven minutes away, after finally scoring in the final. To have it taken away after coming that close. ..."

The Revolution still have seven players left from the team that lost the 2002 MLS Cup 1-0 in double overtime to the Los Angeles Galaxy, the team that this summer will pick up English star David Beckham. That year the Revolution were the host team and at the final there was a crowd of 61,316 at Gillette Stadium.

The Revolution also lost to the Galaxy in the 2005 championship game, 1-0 in extra time.

The Revolution and Toronto FC have had some injury problems.

Michael Parkhurst and Daniel Hernandez are listed as out of tonight's game with injuries, with Marshall Leonard in the doubtful category. Shalrie Joseph and Khano Smith are considered questionable for the Revolution.

Toronto FC will be without midfielder Ronnie O'Brien, who has a knee injury, and defender Chris Pozniak, who has a hamstring injury. Midfielder Maurice Edu, Toronto FC's first-round draft pick is considered ready to play after an injury, although conditioning might be a factor.

After the game Saturday night, Toronto FC does not play again until it visits the Kansas City Wizards, Johnston's former team, on April 25. The teams then play a return game at BMO Field on April 28, the home opener for the Toronto club.

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