jozy-altidore-toronto-mls-cup

Toronto FC have spent the entire season as MLS’s best team. They won the Canadian Championship and easily won the Supporters’ Shield, finishing with more points than any team in league history.

But Toronto was arguably playing its worst soccer of the season come playoff time, just squeaking by the Red Bulls and Crew leading up to an MLS Cup rematch with the defending champs Seattle Sounders.

In front of an energetic crowd at BMO Field looking for revenge, TFC were dominant for 90 minutes against a stagnant and unprepared Sounders side. Toronto was all over the attacking half, led by No. 10 Victor Vazquez and the striking partnership of Jozy Altidore and Sebastian Giovinco. The midfield trio of Michael Bradley, Jonathan Osorio and Marky Delgado was dominant. Toronto won 2-0, clinching their first MLS title.

It was all Toronto in the first half and beyond. Greg Vanney surprisingly started with a 4-4-2 diamond formation, a departure from TFC’s favorite 3-5-2, and it worked marvels, as the hosts ran circles around an overwhelmed Seattle team from the get-go.

TFC kept a lot of possession and pinned the Sounders deep in their defensive third, firing shots at a superhuman Stefan Frei and generally looking better than they have in months. Frei made six first-half stops, blocking a barrage of fireballs from various sources, including Giovinco, Vazquez, Delgado and Osorio.

While Seattle’s previously dominant defense and midfield was getting picked apart by an interchanging cast of Reds, Frei was at the back, diving all over the place. It was an incredible performance from the Sounders keeper. But TFC was too much to overcome, living up to the highly-publicized “best team ever” mantle put on them.

For the first 20 minutes of the second half, those themes continued. Frei parry after Frei parry. But in the 67th minute, Altidore found the breakthrough, slipping behind Seattle’s backline and delicately tapping it over the head of the onrushing keeper to finally give Toronto FC an MLS Cup goal. BMO Field went nuts, and watching on TV, it was clear that a weight had been lifted off that team.

They held on for the last 30 or so minutes, eventually scoring on the counter in late second half stoppage time. Vazquez ran home an Armando Cooper rebound to seal it for Toronto FC, who finally get to celebrate a championship.

TFC are the first MLS team to ever win a treble, and they did it in domineering fashion.

About Harrison Hamm

All things American soccer for The Comeback. Houston Dynamo for SB Nation's Dynamo Theory. Follow me on twitter @harrisonhamm21.