Toronto FC will be looking to recover from their loss in the season opener against rivals Montreal Impact when they take on the Vancouver Whitecaps on Saturday.
Toronto FC produced a sloppy display in their MLS season opener and fell to a 4-2 defeat against Montreal Impact. Toronto FC are one of the strongest sides in the Eastern Conference and finished second in the table last time around.
It's going to be a difficult opening phase for Toronto FC due to their mounting injury concerns and the fact that they are playing their home games in Orlando, Florida due to travel restrictions in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic certainly doesn't help at this point.
Toronto FC are missing quite a few of their most important players and it won't be easy sailing for the Reds in these opening weeks. Meanwhile, Vancouver Whitecaps pulled a major upset over Portland Timbers in their season opener thanks to a lone second-half goal from Lucas Cavallini.
As such, their confidence will be high and they will know that an injury riddled Toronto FC could be their for the taking when the two sides lock horns on Saturday.
Toronto FC's new coach Chris Armas will be hoping his team can turn its fortunes around and get back to winning ways against the Whitecaps, who looked lacking in creativity and enterprise despite winning against the Portland Timbers.
Toronto FC vs Vancouver Whitecaps Head-to-Head
Toronto FC and Vancouver Whitecaps have clashed 25 times till date. Toronto FC have, by far, been the superior side in the meetings between the two. They have won 12 matches while Vancouver Whitecaps have won just six. Seven matches have ended as draws.
The last time these two sides squared off was in September last year when Vancouver Whitecaps won the game 3-2.
Toronto FC form guide (including friendlies): L-W-D-W-L
Vancouver Whitecaps form guide (including friendlies): L-W-W-W-W
Toronto FC vs Vancouver Whitecaps Team News
Toronto are without some of their key players once again. Alejandro Pozuelo has been sidelined with a thigh injury. Chris Mavinga, Dunn and Gallardo are all unavailable too. To make things worse, Jozy Altidore is a doubt after limping off in the game against Montreal Impact.
Ayo Akinola has returned to training but Saturday might come too early for him.
Injuries: Alejandro Pozuelo, Chris Mavinga, Julian Dunn-Johnson, Erickson Gallardo
Doubtful: Ayo Akinola, Jozy Altidore
Vancouver Whitecaps have a handful of injury issues as well. Derek Cornelius is out with a knee injury. Tosaint Ricketts and Leonard Owusu are both nursing hamstring injuries, while Erik Godoy will be unavailable after straining his calf.
Ali Adnan won't be available as he is held up with some problems regarding his visa.
Injuries: Derek Cornelius, Tosaint Ricketts, Leonard Owusu, Erik Godoy
Toronto FC vs Vancouver Whitecaps Predicted XI
Toronto FC Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Alex Bono; Auro Junior, Omar Gonzalez, Luke Singh, Richie Laryea; Ralph Priso, Michael Bradley; Liam Fraser, Marco Delgado, Noble Okello; Patrick Mullins
Vancouver Whitecaps Predicted XI (4-3-3): Maxime Crepeau; Cristian Gutierrez, Ranko Veselinovic, Andy Rose, Jake Nerwinski; Russel Teibert, Caio Alexandre, Michael Baldisimo; Cristian Dajome, Deiber Caicedo, Lucas Cavallini
Toronto FC vs Vancouver Whitecaps Prediction
Toronto FC are a much better side than Vancouver Whitecaps but they are currently quite vulnerable due to their injury concerns. But we expect Toronto to bounce back from their opening day setback and pocket all three points against the Whitecaps.
Prediction: Toronto FC 2-1 Vancouver Whitecaps