Substitute Nick DeLeon scored in the 78th minute, and Quentin Westberg made a key penalty-shot save in the first half as visiting Toronto FC rallied to upset defending MLS Cup champion Atlanta United 2-1 in the Eastern Conference final on Wednesday night.

For the third time in four seasons, Toronto will face the Seattle Sounders in the MLS Cup final. The Nov. 10 game will be played in Seattle.

The Sounders won the title in 2016, and TFC got payback one season later.

Nicolas Benezet also scored for fourth-seeded Toronto, which is unbeaten in its last 13 matches.

The decisive goal was a laser strike from De Leon, following a pirouette move at the top of the box, that found the top corner of the net to break a 1-1 tie late in the match.

Second-seeded Atlanta was the aggressor most of the night but was unable to prevail despite having a chance to put away the game in the first quarter-hour. It was just the third MLS home loss of the season for United, and it was Toronto's first-ever victory at Atlanta.

"Today was about resiliency," Toronto coach Greg Vanney told FS1. "It wasn't beautiful soccer ... Passion, heart, dedication and just making plays.
"A lot of hard work by a lot of guys. A gritty, gritty effort."

The scoring began in the fourth minute when Atlanta's Gonzalo "Pity" Martinez got behind the Toronto back line. Teammate Julian Gressel caught up to make it a two-on-one with TFC keeper Westberg, and Gressel took an easy pass from Martinez and drilled it into an empty net for a 1-0 Atlanta lead.

Westberg, though, announced his presence in the 11th minute when he made a diving stop on Josef Martinez's penalty attempt following a Michael Bradley foul in the box. TFC then answered three minutes later when Benezet bent a shot from the left elbow of the box that was slotted past Atlanta goalkeeper Brad Guzan to level the score line.

Atlanta kept the pressure coming, especially from Josef Martinez, but Westberg remained solid, and Toronto eventually took advantage on one of its few opportunities of the evening. De Leon was essentially unmarked when he drove his winner toward the net, on one of the few defensive lapses on the night by Atlanta, which owned an 18-4 overall shot advantage.

"It was disappointing," Atlanta defender Michael Parkhurst, who is set to retire following the season, told FS1. "We started the game so well ... Could have made it 2-0. It didn't go our way.

"We were not crisp up front. We needed to quicker, a little more precise in our final-third."

Toronto again played without star forward Jozy Altidore, who was dealing with a quad injury. It's uncertain if he will be ready for the final at Seattle.

--Field Level Media

Comment about toronto fc vsatlanta united fc recap 10 30 2019