Toronto FC’s players have once again risen to the occasion, and four of them have found their way onto this week’s Team of the Week. Both the Sounders and the Impact have two players that feature, while Sporting Kansas City, Columbus Crew, and New York City all have one featured player.
GK – Alex Bono (Toronto FC)
-With their victory over the Fire, Toronto outlined their intention to win the Supporters’ Shield and step into the playoffs on their strong foot, thanks to some enormous help from Alex Bono. Bono helped keep one of the more prolific teams in the league to a single goal that honestly no keeper could have done anything about, and made six solid saves in the process.
DF – Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City)
-Graham Zusi never ceases to amaze, and this season has 100% made the position at right-back his own. Not only is he defensively capable, but after assisting both goals against Dallas, he has proven that he can and will still play with a hand in the offense too.
DF – Justin Morrow (Toronto FC)
-Toronto’s performance against a strong Fire team was made all-the-more complete by the outstanding performance of Justin Morrow on the right-hand side. Playing as a more advanced fullback, Morrow allowed more freedom to the front line which is what ultimately makes them dangerous. With excellent linkup play, Justin Morrow easily earned his spot on this team of the week.
DF – Chad Marshall (Seattle Sounders)
-With an excellent defensive performance in helping limit Minnesota United to a single shot on target (and the resulting goal), Chad Marshall added on to his performance by netting the Sounder’s first goal, and drawing them level with Minnesota.
DF – Lalas Abubakar (Columbus Crew SC)
-Lalas Abubakar helped a ten-man Columbus to a draw against an Orlando City team that kept the pressure on all game. Not only did he not crack under said pressure, but Abubakar scored the opening goal of the game for the Crew with a powerful header, displaying his skill in the air against.
MF – Blerim Dzemaili (Montreal Impact)
-Registering an assist in each of the Impact’s games this week, Blerim Dzemaili has displayed once again his uncanny ability to be a part of and conduct goal-scoring plays. With seven assists this season, he is tied with six others behind the three players on top of the assist leader-board that have eight assists.
MF – Ignacio Piatti (Montreal Impact)
-Having scored a brace in both of the Impact’s games this week, Ignacio Piatti now finds himself with 14 goals this season, tied with Bradley Wright-Phillips and Diego Valeri for third on the top-scorer chart. With an obvious thirst for scoring goals, coupled with his cohesion with his teammates, Piatti is a threat in any situation. With their next game against MLS-leading Toronto, the Impact will be looking upon Piatti to make an “impact” if they are to have a chance at winning.
MF – Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders)
-With another vintage performance by Clint Dempsey, one must wonder if his performances are going to truly start to drop off anytime soon. Even though it was a goal from the penalty spot, Dempsey scored the winning goal in an all-important game to not only determine playoff seeding placement, but also to keep them with a shout of the Supporters Shield. On top of that, Dempsey was and is a key factor in the majority of the Sounders’ attacking moves, and excels in that role.
MF – Victor Vazquez (Toronto FC)
-With an assist during the victory over the Fire, Victor Vazquez’s performance in the attacking third was second only to that of Sebastian Giovinco. With twice as many successful passes in the opposition half, Vazquez is the other major key that keeps the Toronto attack turning. Connected with the genius of Giovinco, Vazquez is truly a creative genius that seemingly acts as the fuel for Giovinco’s attack. Without Vazquez, Giovinco’s job of attacking would be much harder, since Vazquez is the main linkup between Toronto’s half and any attacking play that is made going forward.
FW – Sebastian Giovinco (Toronto FC)
-With another key performance and a goal to boot, Sebastian Giovinco showed once again that he is a step above the rest. While his goal wasn’t nearly as impressive as his other goals this season, it showed that not only does he have the capability to direct a midfield from a more attacking position, but he also has a striker’s awareness in the box. Being such a dynamic attacking presence so consistently has earned him his spot on this week’s Team of the Week.
FW – David Villa (New York City FC)
-With his goal tally now up to 19, David Villa simply isn’t stopping anytime soon. With his dynamic goal-scoring ability, and his ability to play conductor for his team, he is generally a shoe-in for every Team of the Week. This week especially so, as his goal is what got NYCFC’s comeback started.