Milos Kocic Archive

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The Super-Duper MLS preview, 2013 edition

Philip F. Anschutz Trophy, the big prize at the end of the season

Philip F. Anschutz Trophy, the big prize at the end of the season

With the MLS season moved up to its earliest start ever, forgive us if we don’t feel 100 per cent totally prepared for First Kick. Judging by the way many MLS teams finished preseason, with tentative matches and still looking at trialists with a week to go before the games count in the standings, a lot of coaches aren’t quite ready for the early start, either.

And that could be telling. The teams that got the jump and have their ducks in a row could have a real advantage in these March matchups; and they could find some bonus points that could help them in the fall.

Steven Sandor, Editor of The 11 and contributors Randy Davis, Aman Dhanoa, Mark Polishuk and Gavin Day all submitted their picks. We tallied the scores and we present our picks below.
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TFC gets first-round pick, Bendik from Portland for Johnson and Kocic

Milos Kocic

Toronto FC has traded forward Ryan Johnson and keeper Milos Kocic to the Portland Timbers.

In return, TFC gets Portland’s top first-round pick (which, right now is third overall) in the SuperDraft. As well, TFC also gets Portland back-up keeper Joe Bendik, who appeared in five matches last season. Oh, and TFC gets some of that magical mystery allocation money.

As it stands, Toronto has the No. 1 and 3 picks in its pocket. And that opens up a lot of options — do the Reds use both? Or does this give the team some leverage for another trade before the draft?

But Portland GM Gavin Wilkinson made it obvious that he doesn’t think much of this year’s draft class.

“After weighing our immediate needs and evaluating the college pool, we felt it was in the club’s best interest to give up a draft pick to secure a talented goal-scorer and an experienced player like Ryan,” said Wilkinson in a release issued by the Timbers. “He adds another weapon to our attacking group and can create goals in a number of ways. He also offers versatility in a number of positions in either a three- or two-front system.”
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Breaking down TFC’s 2012 season, player by player

Reggie Lambe: TFC winless when he plays the full 90; was a -20 on the season

We broke down the Whitecaps, now we break down Toronto FC.

We looked back at Toronto FC’s disastrous 2012 campaign, but we broke down the games minute by minute. From that, we came up with a goal difference for every player on the Reds, similar to a plus-minus in hockey. And, we also looked at the Reds’ record when each player on the team was utilized as either a starter or a sub.

(For more on our methodology, check out the Vancouver Whitecaps recap. Click HERE)

We did not include the CONCACAF Champions League or Amway Canadian Championship in this statistical snapshot. This only includes MLS regular-season matches.
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Another game, another late goal conceded by TFC

Milos Kocic… Takes the blame

You can describe Toronto FC’s 2012 season in any number of colourful ways, yet “comedy of errors” isn’t one of them. That specific term implies a variety of errors, whereas for the Reds, it’s just the same glaring flaw of surrendering late goals game after game. Sure enough, TFC once more fell victim to a late goal, as Hamdi Salihi’s 88th-minute strike netted D.C. United a 1-0 win and left the Reds wondering how this has happened again.

“We come to the end of every game and we don’t tense up,” said forward Andrew Wiedeman. “We all think this is the game we’re going to right the ship. I firmly thought we were going to pull it out and get the win, the way we were peppering the goal. We put them under so much pressure in the second half but we couldn’t pull it off.”

TFC’s lack of a finishing touch was the big-picture issue in the match, as the Reds indeed created the better chances of the two clubs and probably should’ve found the scoreboard at least once. Still, a scoreless draw was in the cards until the 88th minute, when Maicon Santos’s long attempt from outside the box was mishandled by goalkeeper Milos Kocic, allowing Salihi to fire home the rebound for the deciding goal.
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O’Dea: Toronto FC “is mentally weak”

Darren O’Dea

Same old story.
 
Toronto FC was looking to bounce back from its dismal effort and the tongue-lashing dished out by coach Paul Mariner after Wednesday night’s dismal performance in a 2-1 loss to Chicago Fire at home.

The team definitely rebounded with a better overall team game but the Philadelphia Union (7-13-5) snatched victory out of TFC’s grasp with a goal in the game’s final minutes, allowing the visitors to escape BMO Field with a 1-1 draw. TFC (5-17-7) rued the missed opportunities in a strong first half and lacked the mental toughness once again in the late stages of a game that erased the advantage supplied by Eric Hassli in the 58th minute.
 
TFC’s winless streak has now reached nine games and the team remains entrenched in the cellar of the Eastern Conference. Read the rest of this entry »

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Mariner fumes after TFC’s poor effort against the Fire

Paul Mariner

Toronto FC was officially eliminated from any chance at the MLS playoffs with Wednesday’s 2-1 loss to the Chicago Fire, and with the Reds’ minuscule postseason chances also went Paul Mariner’s patience. The TFC head coach was openly critical of his side’s effort and inability to avoid critical errors, particularly in a first half that saw the Reds concede two preventable goals.

“My first statement was that we were their best player,” Mariner said, when asked to describe his half-time speech to his team. “If you want to give teams a two-goal stand then carry on, but we’re not that good.  We were the architects of our own downfall, playing ridiculous balls in the wrong area of the field.  I thought we eradicated that, but obviously some of the lads that have been in the squad haven’t been listening.”

Players’ attention (or lack thereof) was a recurring theme for Mariner, who seemed a hair away from publicly calling out some of his team.

“It’s all about being a professional in every single aspect of the word,” Mariner said.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Late free kick allows SKC to edge Toronto FC in “bit of a nothing match”

Kei Kamara

Toronto FC did well to defend against an onslaught of quality chances from Sporting Kansas City, but it was one bad bounce that doomed the Reds in a 1-0 loss on Saturday at BMO Field.

After TFC held the Eastern Conference leaders scoreless through the first 83 minutes, it was a 30-yard free kick from Kei Kamara that put Sporting ahead.  Kamara’s kick appeared to take a deflection off of Toronto’s Andrew Wiedeman that sent the ball arcing past the wall and inside the right post on an angle, past diving goalkeeper Milos Kocic.

“It took a deflection and hampered the keeper as well,” said defender Darren O’Dea.  “It doesn’t need to be pretty, but you need to come away with something.  I think that was probably our best spell in the game as well.”
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TFC’s mental errors allow Chicago to snatch a late win

Logan Emory… called out by his coach for a silly sending-off.

A series of grievous errors allowed Toronto FC to gift a 2-1 win to the Chicago Fire in Bridgeview, Ill. Saturday.

Toronto FC held a 1-0 lead at halftime, and it could have been 2-0 — because, right before halftime, Luis Silva was absolutely robbed by Fire keeper Sean Johnson.

But, mistakes from keeper Milos Kocic, who took a knee to the head in the first half and was bleeding from both nostrils, and defender Logan Emory helped undo Toronto FC’s efforts for the evening.

As the Fire hold the fifth and final Eastern Conference playoff position, the loss now leaves TFC a whopping 16 points out of a playoff spot.
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TFC scores 5 in CCL opener, but the game wasn’t seen by many

Luis Silva

With just 5,324 fans in attendance at BMO Field and no TV broadcaster airing the game, Toronto FC’s performance in its CONCACAF Champions League opener against CD Aguila could well become an urban legend.

“Did you hear TFC won a game 5-1?”

“Yeah, sure! Was it a brace for the Loch Ness Monster and a hat trick from Bigfoot?”

As unlikely as it sounds, the Reds did indeed score five times against an overmatched Aguila side. It was just the second time in team history that TFC reached the five-goal plateau, finishing one shy of the club record of six, set in the famous “Miracle In Montreal” victory over the Impact that won Toronto the 2009 Canadian Championship.

“It’s good for our confidence,” said striker Ryan Johnson. “Going into Chicago [on Saturday], it’s a big game for us, and this helps everybody. We had a lot of opportunities on offence and this will make us more comfortable when we’re in those positions.”
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Hall signs on to become TFC’s No. 2 keeper

Freddy Hall

Toronto FC finally has an experienced back-up keeper.

Bermudan Freddy Hall, who has been in camp as a trialist for the past three weeks and played in the recent friendly against Liverpool, is now officially available for selection.

Teenager Quillan Roberts was promoted from the Academy to back up Milos Kocic after Stefan Frei broke his leg in training. But the club was never fully comfortable in having a teenager being option No. 2 in goal.

“Freddy brings depth to our goalkeeping position and has many qualities that we like to see at this position,” said Toronto FC Head Coach and Director of Soccer Operations Paul Mariner in a release issued by the club. “He performed well during his trial period with our club and played well against Liverpool. We are pleased to sign him.”
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