Diego Fagundez put the New England Revolution in the lead in just the second minute with his ninth goal of the season, but Andrew Wiedeman equalized for Toronto FC in controversial fashion in first half stoppage time and the visitors were forced to leave Canada with a 1-1 draw.
Revolution head coach Jay Heaps played the same line-up, coming off back-to-back wins, for the third straight game and the cohesion of the team seemed to prove immediate dividends with the visitors taking the lead inside of two minutes. Second year midfielder Kelyn Rowe got the ball about 40 yards from goal and made a mazy run through the defense and into the box before firing a shot on frame that was blocked by Richard Eckersley.
The rebound fell back to Rowe, who slid a pass across the box to Fagundez, who easily tapped it into the net for his ninth goal of the season, giving the Revolution a 1-0 lead.
Continuing the fast start, Fagundez had a chance to add to his tally less than four minutes later when Rowe one-timed a back heel pass to the 18-year-old after receiving the ball from Chris Tierney. Fagundez ran into the box and curled a shot targeted for the far post, but Joe Bendik managed to keep it out with a diving save.
New England was then denied a penalty shout in the 24th minute when Juan Agudelo broke forward towards the box. Agudelo took a bit of a heavy touch to avoid Steven Caldwell, but then was shoved out of the way by Doneil Henry as he chased down the ball inside the box. Referee Fotis Bazakos allowed play to go on, ignoring the push.
Toronto would then find the equalizer in the second minute of first half stoppage time. Richard Eckersley launched a free kick from near midfield into the Revolution box. The Revolution failed to clear the ball and it fell to Jonthan Osorio, whose deflected shot was blocked by Andrew Farrell, but fell right back to Henry. Henry played the ball to Wiedeman, who finished past Matt Reis from close range to make it 1-1. The Revolution had shouts for handballs on both Henry and Caldwell on their initial attempt to clear the ball, but Bazakos again didn’t make the call.
The Revolution were unable to muster much of a response or get much going offensively in the second half and looked to have conceded the game winner to Toronto in the 88th minute before Bazakos finally came to the rescue. The visitors again struggled to defend a long free kick, this one from Bobby Convey. Convey’s free kick was headed into the net by Caldwell, but this time Bazakos agreed with the Revolution’s protests and disallowed the goal for an infraction that wasn’t immediately clear.
The draw leaves the Revolution (10-9-7, 37 points) in the sixth and final playoff spot in the East, but the Houston Dynamo sit just one point back with two games in hand. Toronto (4-12-10, 22 points) remain in ninth place, well removed from the playoff picture. New England is now winless all-time in seven games in Toronto (0-2-5).
The Revolution return to Gillette Stadium to play the Montreal Impact on Sunday, September 8th at 7:30 p.m.