Toronto FC ease past Real Salt Lake

A brace from Jozy Altidore put the home side in pole position against Real Salt Lake on Friday night.

Toronto FC ease past Real Salt Lake
Toronto FC found the winning touch against Real Salt Lake | Source: Frank Gunn-Canadian Press
Toronto FC
3 1
Real Salt Lake
Toronto FC: Irwin; Auro, Van der Wiel, Moor, Morgan; Bradley; Hasler (Aketxe, min. 70), Osorio; Delgado (Chapman, min. 59); Altidore (Ricketts, min. 78), Giovinco.
Real Salt Lake: Rimando; Lennon, M. Silva, Glad, Phillips; Beckerman, Kreilach; Savarino, Rusnák, Plata (Baird, min. 70); L. Silva (Saucedo, min. 83).
SCORE: 1-0, min. 23, Altidore (pk). 2-0, min. 45, Altidore. 2-1, min. 82, Baird. 3-1, min. 90+2, Ricketts.
REFEREE: Allen Chapman (USA). Yellow Card: Giovinco (min. 35), Altidore (min. 35), Beckerman (min. 40), Osorio (min. 62), Phillips (min. 77), Morgan (min. 86).

It may have taken longer than expected but Toronto FC finally picked up their first three points of the season against Real Salt Lake as Jozy Altidore scored a brace in a 3-1 win for the 'Reds'.

Toronto have temporarily moved from the bottom of the Eastern conference in Major League Soccer with this result while RSL sit in eighth in the Western conference.

Toronto close out the game in the first half

Jozy Altidore made no mistake from the spot | Source: torontofc.ca
Jozy Altidore made no mistake from the spot | Source: torontofc.ca

Toronto looked to stamp their authority from the first whistle and had it not been for Nick Rimando, could have scored two goals in the space of a minute. The first save Rimando made was in the 14th minute when he came quickly off his line to stop Altidore from close range. The second big save from the RSL goalkeeper came a few seconds later when he stopped Sebastian Giovinco's penalty after Damir Kreilach's handball had given the Italian the chance to open the scoring. Unfortunately for Rimando, his defense let him down again in the 22nd minute when Justen Glad brought down Altidore inside the area. The US international took on the responsibility of the penalty for himself and coolly converted it, giving Toronto the lead.

Once they had given up the lead, it looked like Real Salt Lake had no answer for Toronto's constant pressure. Nicolas Hasler could have opened his account not too long after Altidore but he sent his effort over the crossbar. Altidore then grabbed his second in the 45th minute when he latched onto a loose touch by teammate Ashtone Morgan and slotted the ball into the far corner.

Substitutes put in good performances for both sides

Real Salt Lake tried to battle back but ultimately fell short | Source: rsl.com
Real Salt Lake tried to battle back but ultimately fell short | Source: rsl.com

The second half was more of the same story as Toronto looked to keep control of the game and get the win they wanted. It wasn't until later on the second half that RSL found a way back into the match as Toronto took their foot off the gas a little. Substitute Corey Baird took RSL within one goal of Toronto in the 82nd minute when he passed the ball into the back of the net after RSL caught out Toronto on the break.

Toronto's substitutes were just as effective as Baird. Ager Aketxe could have opened his account for Toronto in stoppage tome but his effort cannoned off the crossbar. Tosaint Ricketts was the quickest to react and managed to sneak the ball past Rimando, who made a valiant effort to keep the ball out.