Recap: Sam Surridge brace gives Nashville SC the win in Toronto

Nashville SC got a dramatic midweek win, thanks to a stellar turn from striker Sam Surridge.

The XI

Rumba Munthali made a handful of changes to his team, with Teal Bunbury coming in from the start and Brian Anunga getting the nod in midfield. Homegrown midfielder Isaiah Jones also was included on the bench, the first time in club history an academy product has made a matchday squad.

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The most notable change, though, was the positioning of Surridge. Almost exclusively a No. 9, the Designated Player spent the full 90 minutes as a left winger, cutting inside on his right foot to great effect.

On the pitch

Nashville found themselves on the back foot for most of the first half. A poor challenge from Anunga handed Toronto FC a penalty kick, but a slip from Federico Bernardeschi saw the effort sail well over the goal. Just minutes later, the Italian found redemption, setting up Alonso Coello for the opener.

Nashville headed into the break as the second-best team, outshot 13 to four and lucky to survive with just a single-goal deficit. The roles were reversed in the second period, though. Munthali brought on Sean Davis and Tyler Boyd for Brian Anunga and Alex Muyl, giving the Coyotes a different look and more quality in the final third.

It paid off. Surridge pulled Nashville level in the 65th minute, finishing off a perfect ball from Hany Mukhtar with his trademark finesse finish to the far post.

In second-half stoppage time, he made it a brace in style. After an aggressive run from Tyler Boyd, the ball across the box left Surridge with work to do. He made it look easy, though, flicking the ball in past Luca Gavran for his seventh of the year.

The big picture

The goals end a relative drought for Surridge, who hadn’t scored since his May 4 hat-trick against CF Montréal, and had just one shot on target in six matches since. The win continues a strong run for the Coyotes, who have lost just one match since firing Gary Smith and move up into eighth place in the Eastern Conference with a game in hand on many of the teams around them.

They’ll return home for the next week, taking on New York City FC and Inter Miami at Geodis Park over the next two weekends.

Post-match quotes

Stats

Possession: TOR 51% – 49% NSH
Passes completed: TOR 445 – 418 NSH
Shots: TOR 17 – 11 NSH
Shots on goal: TOR 5 – 3 NSH
Penalty kicks: TOR 1 – 0 NSH
Expected goals: TOR 2.04 – 1.25 NSH
Goals: TOR 1 – 2 NSH
Fouls: TOR 8 – 15 NSH
Yellow cards: TOR 2 – 1 NSH
Red cards: TOR 0 – 0 NSH

Author: Ben Wrightis the Director of Soccer Content and a Senior MLS Contributor for Broadway Sports covering Nashville SC and the US National Team. Previously Ben was the editor and a founder of Speedway Soccer, where he has covered Nashville SC and their time in USL before journeying to Major League Soccer since 2018. Raised in Louisville, KY Ben grew up playing before a knee injury ended his competitive career. When he is not talking soccer he is probably producing music, drinking coffee or hanging out with his wife and kids. Mastodon

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