Tuesday, March 9, 2021

MLS: Toronto move level on points with Philadelphia, Castellanos the derby hero

SoccerNews in MLS 2 Nov 2020

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Philadelphia Union’s loss opened the door to Toronto in the race for the Supporters’ Shield, while New York City won a derby thriller.

Toronto moved level on points with Philadelphia after a 2-1 win over Inter Miami and the Union’s 2-1 defeat to Columbus Crew on Sunday.

Columbus took a 37th-minute lead at home, Artur finding the bottom corner from 20 yards.

However, Philadelphia drew level in the 57th minute thanks to a penalty from Jamiro, although the hosts would strike late.

Krisztian Nemeth got on the end of a Luis Diaz Espinoza cross from the right to tap away a winner six minutes from time for Columbus, who are third in the Eastern Conference.

Toronto boosted their chances of winning the Supporters’ Shield by overcoming Inter Miami.

Former Juventus midfielder Blaise Matuidi opened the scoring for Inter Miami with his first MLS goal.

But Toronto would win after conceding the opening goal for the third time this season, which is tied for the most with San Jose Earthquakes, as per Opta.

Ayo Akinola scored a fine equaliser after outmuscling his opponent before Gonzalo Higuain almost responded for Inter Miami, hitting the crossbar with a powerful 20-yard effort in the 79th minute.

Instead, Alejandro Pozuelo tucked away an 84th-minute penalty for the winner for Toronto.

Pozuelo has scored each of his past seven penalties for Toronto in MLS.

Valentin Castellanos scored a hat-trick to inspire New York City to a 5-2 derby win over the Red Bulls.

Castellanos became just the second player to net a hat-trick in the Hudson River Derby, joining David Villa (2017).

Elsewhere, Teal Bunbury’s brace saw New England Revolution overcome DC United 4-3 in a thriller and Atlanta United beat Cincinnati 2-0.

Orlando City edged Montreal Impact 1-0, Colorado Rapids beat Seattle Sounders 3-1, the Portland Timbers overcame the Vancouver Whitecaps 1-0 and LA Galaxy edged Real Salt Lake 2-1.

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