Toluca beats Caledonia 5-1 piñata style

Toluca forward Raul NavaForward Raul Nava scored on either side of the break as Deportivo Toluca proved too hot for Caledonia AIA in a 5-1 rout over the Trinidad and Tobago club on Wednesday at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in their Group 6 Concacaf Champions League second leg match.

The win improved the Mexicans position at the top of the group with 9 points and a game in hand, ahead of Guatemala's CSD Comunicaciones (3 points and two games in hand), while Caledonia sits at the bottom without a point after three matches.

And while Toluca Head Coach Jose Saturnino Cardozo is confident of qualifying into the quarter-final round and already looks to that round, Caledonia Head Coach Jamaal Shabazz says it’s a learning experience for the T&T club.

“After suffering defeats in our first two (CCL) matches, then concede two early goals (tonight), I think the guys got deflated,” said the Caledonia coach during the post-match media session.

“I think it was more mental than it was physical or tactical. We've got to learn to play under a lot more pressure. We've got to go back to the drawing board and take from this Concacaf tournament what we could for our future progress and development."

Nava, who scored one in Toluca's 3-1 first leg win over the Morvant/Laventille club on August 6 at the Nemesio Diez, Mexico, opened the scoring on Wednesday for a 1-0 advantage by the 17th minute.

The 23 year old former Mexico U23 forward had the simple task of tucking in a right side cross after the Caledonia defense failed to tidy and initial effort.

Caledonia fell asleep in the 28th minute against a low Carlos Esquivel cross which slipped past everyone and into goalkeeper Shemel Louison's far netting for a 2-0 Toluca cushion.

A minute later Esquivel provided a decent ball into the area but Edy Brambila was inches off target.

Even left-back Erbin Trejo got into the action in the 35th minute hitting inches wide of the upper corner after picking up a pass by Xavier Baez.

Then in the 40th minute Brambila made it 3-0 for Toluca slamming into an exposed net after Lousion made a block-out against Baez.

Kithson BainCaledonia had a couple first half opportunities but new signing Kithson Bain failed to find the back of the net in the 10th minute after a quick run down the right and into the area hitting a miscued effort, and in the 32nd minute under challenge he poked wide of the upright from inside the six yard area from a Jamal Gay flicked-on pass.

And just as teammates Nathan Lewis, in the 16th minute, Densill Theobald, in the 38th minute, and Aubrey David, in the 45th minute, Bain had an ambitious crack at goal from distance in the 31st minute—all comfortable takes for Toluca goalie Alfredo Talavara.

Bain finally pegged one back seconds into the second half, reducing the Caledonia deficit 1-3.

The 31 year-old speedy former Tranmere Rovers player had the simple task of guiding in a loose ball from the six yard area after teammate Gay fumbled a low cross into the area by Caledonia's liveliest player on the night, Lewis.

But ten minutes later Toluca introduced Antonio Matias and the midfielder finished off where his teammates left out.

The pint-sized player forced Louison into a diving save in the 60th minute, and six minutes later set up Nava's second item.

Caledonia defender Aubrey David (L) and Head Coach Jamaal Shabazz following the 5-1 defeat against TolucaNava, who slid in short of opening the scoring in as early as the 12th minute, had the simple task of turning in Matias’ neat low pass into the six yard area for a 4-1 score. Matias then made it 5-1 in the 72nd minute by fitting a low strike from above the area, out of Louison's reach and into the net.

Caledonia debutant and goalscorer, Bain, who Shabazz believes will “light up the local TT Pro League”, looked short of match fitness in the second period and despite his late efforts, only earned himself a yellow card for diving in the 76th minute.

“We would take the positives out of this game that there were times we were able to get behind them, and even get the ball in the back of the net,” continued Shabazz.

“But the margin for error at Concacaf level is so slim, and the lack of experience in playing at this level of the game is showing …and we are paying dearly for errors made. It’s a lack of concentration at times, but all in all, it’s something we can learn from. We’ve got to stay positive and take the fact that while we have been scored upon …we have created chances to score. And I think all is not gloom and doom for us.

Toluca Head Coach Jose Saturnino Cardozo (centre) during the post match media session“I thought we gave them room to play and they had enough time to pick players out. We didn’t close down too well. And playing at home I thought we gave up more space than we did when we played them in Mexico City.”

Caledonia will return to domestic Digicel Pro League action against home team Central FC from 7pm on Saturday at the Ato Boldon, then travel to Guatemala to tackle Comunicaciones on Wednesday 25 September for its final group match.

Comunicaciones, which defeated Caledonia 3-0 in the first leg and lost to Toluca 2-1, will later meet the Mexicans on Wednesday 23 October to close off Group 6.

“(We) played very well and more or less controlled the game,” said Toluca coach Jose Saturnino Cardozo through a translator following his team’s comfortable victory. “Sometimes it seemed a bit dangerous but (we) had the speed and everything for the game and did a good job. I was a very well thought out plan and intelligent team. I am happy with the work that (we) have done.

“The team performed in the manner in which it should have. Even thought it wasn’t the starting team, the team that played was still a team that had the capacity and the ability to do what they needed to do. We had all confidence that they were able to perform and execute what they needed to do.”

Caledonia AIA 1 - 5 Deportivo Toluca
Kithson Bain 46'  ; Raul Nava 17', 66' Carlos Esquivel 28', Edy Brambila 40', Antonio Matias 72'

Caledonia AIA - 1. Shemel Louison (G), 7. Stephan David (C), 2. Aubrey David, 3. Nuru Abdullah Muhammad, 4. Akeem Thomas(Yellow Card), 6. Marcus Ambrose, 18. Kithson Bain, 20. Noel Williams(17. Akim Armstrong 65th minute), 21. Densill Theobald, 23. Jamal Gay(9. Keyon Edwards 67th minute), 27. Nathan Lewis(25. Keron Bethelmy 73rd minute)

Unused Substitutes - 33. Glenroy Samuel (G), 11. Abdallah Phillips, 12. Kareem Joseph, 22. Miguel Alejandro Romeo

Coach - Jamaal Shabazz

Deportivo Toluca - 1. Alfredo Talavera (G)(C), 3. Fausto Pinto, 11. Carlos Esquivel(16. Oscar Rojas 70th minute), 13. Hector Acosta, 15. Antonia Rios(5. Wilson Tiago 74th minute)(Yellow Card), 18. Xavier Baez, 19. Edy Brambila(10. Antonio Matias 56th minute), 20. Miguel Almazan, 25. Daniel Gonzalez, 26. Erbin Trejo, 29. Raul Nava

Unused substitutes - 22. Cesar Lozano (G), 4. Paulo Da Silva, 9. Juan Carlos Cacho, 23. Edgar Benitez

Coach - Jose Saturnino Cardozo