Bridgeview, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - Toronto FC attempts to halt a two-game losing streak when the club continues its season-opening road trip at Toyota Park against the Chicago Fire on Saturday.
TFC will play their first seven games away from home this season as BMO Field undergoes renovations, and Greg Vanney's club will be hoping to halt a skid of back-to-back defeats in Chicago, which ended a three-game slide of its own last weekend.
Toronto began the season with a 3-1 victory over Vancouver, but a loss to Columbus was followed by a 2-1 defeat to Real Salt Lake that left TFC head coach Greg Vanney a bit frustrated.
Jackson netted the equalizing goal for Toronto in the 88th minute, and it appeared that the club would leave Salt Lake with a point. However, just one minute later, Jordan Allen tallied the winning goal for the hosts, leaving Vanney's men with another defeat.
The coach wasn't just disappointed with his team giving away the late goal, but he was also upset with some of the officiating decisions in the match, most notably referee Hilario Grajeda's call to waive off a TFC goal in the 73rd minute that would have leveled the match at 1-1.
"I don't think it's anything intentional - I think it's just referees missing calls, period," a frustrated Vanney said. "Unfortunately, they're game- changing calls. Referees will always miss calls. That's part of it and we live with it. But there needs to be less calls that alter or change the game. That's where it gets incredibly frustrating."
"It's very difficult to get explanations these days."
Another thing that has been difficult for Toronto is getting a result in Chicago.
In nine all-time meetings between the sides at Toyota Park, Chicago owns a record of 4-0-5 against the Canadian side, whose last win against the Fire came in the 2010 season.
Chicago brings an 11-game unbeaten streak against TFC into Saturday's contest, and the club will also bring a bit of confidence having claimed its first win of the campaign last time out.
Following a run of three successive defeats, the Fire earned a 1-0 win over the Philadelphia Union courtesy of a 37th-minute goal from Adailton. But the Brazilian was more pleased about the team's first clean sheet than about his goal after the match.
"We got the clean sheet, and we have to keep this energy, this enthusiasm," said Adailton. "I'm sure that if we keep this, it doesn't mean that we're going to win every game, but it means that every game is going to be very hard for the opponent, and we will have many chances to get the three points."