After a 4-1 win over Portland Timbers FC, any of the Toronto FC players could have made the case to be named the Alcatel MLS Player of the Week but ultimately, it was Justin Morrow's performance that earned the highest praise in Week 23 of Major League Soccer action.
The defender registers two goals in a swashbuckling performance
It was a 0-0 game for the first half and the beginning of the second half until Morrow came to the fore in the 58th minute. The ball broke to the left wing back at the top of Portland's penalty area and he proceeded to power home a fantastic goal that left the goalkeeper helpless. Morrow was not finished and bagged his second goal of the game in the 78th minute when the ball fell at his feet inside the area and he tucked it away from close range.
Morrow, who has been in fantastic form for Toronto this season, was a threat down the flanks all game long and his attacking will was highlighted this weekend in front of his home fans by being in the right place at the right time. When he wasn't scoring goals, Morrow was a profitable outlet for Toronto's midfielders to find during any spells of possession and on the defensive side, he kept the likes of Diego Valeri and Sebastián Blanco quiet for most of the match. All in all, it was a game to remember for the wing back.
Morrow's ability propels Toronto to the top of the standings
Morrow picked up his fourth and fifth goals of the season against Portland and helped Toronto FC climb on top of the race for the 2017 MLS Supporters Shield. Toronto has been a force to be reckoned with throughout their campaign and although much of the attention has been on the likes of Sebastian Giovinco and Jozy Altidore, Morrow deserves to be in the conversation as a key cog in Toronto's season so far.
His wing play has been one of the best in the league and he has managed to time his runs well so as to capitalize on the space that teams have seemingly afforded him game in, game out. Even when he has been given more attention, Morrow has still managed to find gaps to influence the game in any way he can both offensively and defensively. His performances have caught the attention of United States Men's National Team head coach Bruce Arena, and have led to him featuring for the USMNT during the most recent CONCACAF Gold Cup.
The MLS Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season by a panel of journalists from NASR. The group consists of members of print, television, radio and online media.