MLS Cup final by the numbers: Toronto FC vs. Seattle Sounders

Toronto FC will meet the Seattle Sounders in the MLS Cup final for the third time in four seasons on Sunday. What will it take for TFC to win their second Cup in three seasons? Ryan McKenna is joined by Peter Galindo to preview the final.

Major League Soccer glory is up for grabs on Sunday as Toronto FC and Seattle Sounders FC meet in the MLS Cup final.

Ahead of the big matchup in Seattle, here are some key numbers to keep in mind:

1 – Philip F. Anschutz trophies won by each club.

2 – Seattle’s Western Conference seed entering the MLS Cup Playoffs. The Sounders finished the regular season with a 16-10-8 record and three points ahead of both Real Salt Lake and Minnesota United FC in the standings. Seattle wrapped up its schedule before the playoffs with wins over San Jose and Minnesota to earn the second spot. An upset victory over top-seeded LAFC in the Western Conference final saw them advance to the championship game.

3 – Appearances in the MLS Cup final by each team. Both appearances before this year came against each other in 2016 and ’17. The final in both those years was in Toronto with Seattle taking the title in 2016 after edging Toronto 5-4 on penalties. In 2017, TFC hoisted the trophy after a 2-0 victory.

3 – Time of the game’s afternoon kickoff (Eastern).

4 – Toronto’s Eastern Conference seed entering the MLS Cup Playoffs. The Reds posted a 13-10-11 record and really started to turn it on during the second half of the season. Some of the credit can be given to their defence tightening up after the signing of centre back Omar Gonzalez. Gonzalez has missed all three post-season games with a hamstring strain and was on the bench for the East final. He’s been involved in training and may play in the final. Veteran Laurent Ciman has filled in nicely in Gonzalez’s absence.

4 – Clean sheets by TFC goalkeeper Quentin Westberg in regular season. He signed with Toronto in February after coming over from AJ Auxerre in France’s Ligue 2. The 32-year-old took the starting goalkeeper job from Alex Bono and was solid in 28 starts, allowing 41 goals for a 1.46 goals-against average. He also stopped three of 10 penalties.

5 – Home wins by Seattle over the Reds. The Sounders have also gone 11-2-4 at home this season.

6 – Players on Seattle to play in both the 2016 and ’17 final. By contrast, Toronto has 11 players on its squad who have been around for all three championship games.

9 – Goals by Toronto in MLS Cup playoffs. The majority of these goals came in Toronto’s first-round matchup against DC United where they won 5-1. Alejandro Pozuelo and Jonathan Osorio, of Brampton, Ont., lead the way with two goals and an assist apiece.

10 – The Sounders’ all-time wins against Toronto. Seattle head coach Brian Schmetzer and Toronto’s Greg Vanney have a 2-2-1 record against each other with the advantage going to Schmetzer for breaking the tie on penalties in the 2016 final.

11 – Goals by Raul Ruidiaz, Seattle’s leading scorer during the regular season. Jordan Morris, a Seattle native, followed closely behind him with 10 goals after missing all of 2018 with a torn ACL.

12 – Goals by Alejandro Pozuelo, Toronto’s leading scorer during the regular season. The attacking midfielder from Spain signed with the Reds in March as a designated player after the team sold fan-favourite Sebastian Giovinco to Saudi Arabian club Al-Hilal and Victor Vasquez left for Qatar. Pozuelo, 28, has brought plenty of flare to Toronto this year and was rewarded by being named to the MLS Best XI.

33 – Pounds the winning trophy weighs.

35 – Days since striker Jozy Altidore last played for TFC. He’s dealt with a quad strain since Oct. 6 after being injured in the regular-season finale against Columbus. The 30-year-old striker said earlier this week that it would take “a bit of a miracle” for him to play in the game. He was a prominent piece to TFC’s previous two championship runs, but they’ve been able to get by without him so far in these playoffs.

50 – Price my cousin in Seattle could have paid for a ticket to the game, but didn’t. (C’mon Mitch … keep reading to see what the current resale price is.)

50 – Points accumulated by Toronto in the regular season.

56 – Points accumulated by Seattle in the regular season.

65 – Percentage for Seattle to beat TFC in the final, according to FiveThirtyEight. Toronto’s percentage is at 35 per cent. For reference, FiveThirtyEight only gave the Sounders a 19 per cent chance to beat LAFC in the West final while Toronto was given a 30 per cent shot at beating Atlanta.

78 – Minute Nick DeLeon scored to give Toronto the lead in the Eastern Conference final against Atlanta United FC. DeLeon’s incredible finish came after he deked out two Atlanta defenders before turning back, setting and firing a right-footed shot into the top left-hand corner of the net. It gave Toronto the lead and it held on for a 2-1 victory.

99 – Days since Toronto’s last MLS loss (Aug. 3 at Red Bulls).

116 – Saves by Seattle’s Stefan Frei this season – fourth best in MLS. Frei, a former Toronto FC ‘keeper, stole the show during the 2016 final between the two teams and earned MVP honours for his performance. He was solid again in ’17 by keeping his team in the game, but Toronto was too strong.

622 – The average resale price for a ticket to the game. Only the 2014 NFC Championship Game between the Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers at CenturyLink Field had a higher resale value of $628.

2016 – Seattle’s last MLS Cup championship.

2017 – Toronto’s last MLS Cup championship.

70,000 – Estimated attendance at CenturyLink Field for the game. It’s expected to be the second-largest MLS Cup crowd ever after last year’s final drew 73,019 in Atlanta at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Atlanta United FC defeated the Portland Timbers last year to win their first title.

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