Tony Tchani scored what he was hoping would be a historic goal for Toronto FC, he just didn't quite get to stick around long enough to see how it all turned out.
The TFC midfielder was shown his second yellow card for unsporting behavior and sent off after his first-half goal, and the Columbus Crew were able to rally against the 10-man hosts for a 1-1 draw on Saturday at BMO Field.
The result kept TFC (1-2-4) winless in 12 matches all-time in the Trillium Cup, and helped the Crew (2-1-3) remain unbeaten in their last five games overall since losing the season opener.
Emilio Renteria scored his first goal of the season on a nifty back-post header from a Dilly Duka cross in the 48th minute for the Crew. Columbus are now 5-0-7 in this rivalry all-time and locked down defensively when it counted, despite watching their four-game shutout streak come to an in the 42nd minute.
That’s when Tchani latched on to a through pass from forward Alan Gordon and coolly slotted his second career goal past Crew goalkeeper William Hesmer. But a minute later he was gone, having earned his second yellow card after he earned a first during a heated scrap with the Crew’s Kevin Burns in the 37th minute.
The strange sequence certainly wasn’t the first time this has happened in MLS. In fact, a similar turn of events went down earlier this month in Vancouver, when Whitecaps forward Eric Hassli was shown a second yellow card and subsequently sent off when he removed his jersey following a goal on April 6 against New England.
Tchani didn’t remove his jersey, but instead leapt over the placards next to the field to greet the fans who embraced him. That was enough for referee David Gantar, who promptly showed Tchani the door for leaving the field of play without the referee’s permission. TFC trudged on with 10 men for the waning minutes of the first half and throughout the second.
Rentería made them pay not long after the break when his header glanced beautifully to the far post, giving Duka his second assist in as many games after he set up Robbie Rogers’s game-winner against Kansa s City on April 16.
Toronto controlled much of the flow in the first half, and nearly got on the board in the 26th minute. Javier Martina took a through pass from Gordon and tried to beat Hesmer with a left-footed shot to the near post, but the Crew goalkeeper was up the task and steered the shot harmlessly wide.
Rogers retaliated for the Crew in the 35th minute, but his right-footed shot missed wide of the post after Rentería dug a loose ball off the end line and fed the Crew midfielder in open space in the box.
Crew youngster Tommy Heinemann laced a golden right-footed chance wide of the post in the 77th minute. Toronto FC mighty-mite Joao Plata scorched a shot over the bar in the 79th minute for one of the best second-half scoring chances for the undermanned TFC.
TOR -- Tony Tchani 1 (Julian de Guzman 1, Alan Gordon 1) 41
CLB -- Emilio Renteria 1 (Sebastian Miranda 1) 49
Columbus Crew -- William Hesmer, Rich Balchan, Julius James, Chad Marshall, Sebastian Miranda, Robbie Rogers, Emmanuel Ekpo (Tommy Heinemann 46), Kevin Burns (Dejan Rusmir 63), Dilly Duka, Emilio Renteria (Andres Mendoza 74), Eddie Gaven.
Substitutes Not Used: Jeff Cunningham, Andy Iro, Korey Veeder, Andy Gruenebaum.
Toronto FC -- Stefan Frei, Dan Gargan, Dicoy Williams, Adrian Cann, Danleigh Borman, Tony Tchani, Maicon Santos (Joao Plata 77), Julian de Guzman, Javier Martina (Richard Eckersley 63), Alan Gordon (Mikael Yourassowsky 46), Jacob Peterson.
Substitutes Not Used: Oscar Cordon, Nick Soolsma, Nathan Sturgis, Milos Kocic.
CLB -- Kevin Burns (caution; Reckless Tackle) 36
TOR -- Tony Tchani (caution; Unsporting Behavior) 37
CLB -- Emmanuel Ekpo (caution; Dissent) 39
TOR -- Tony Tchani (caution; Unsporting Behavior) 42
TOR -- Tony Tchani (ejection; Second Caution) 42
CLB -- Julius James (caution; Reckless Foul) 80
CLB -- Dejan Rusmir (caution; Fails to Respect Distance) 90
Referee: David Gantar
Referee's Assistants: -Joe Fletcher; Philippe Briere
4th Official: Paul Ward
Time of Game: 1:52