MLS Preview: Bradley keeping the faith
Toronto FC captain Michael Bradley firmly believes the MLS club can build "something special", despite their indifferent start to the 2015 season.
Greg Vanney's men ended a four-match losing streak courtesy of a 2-0 win at Orlando City last Sunday.
Designated player and United States international striker Jozy Altidore was the hero for Toronto, scoring a second-half brace - his first goals since the opening round of the season.
Toronto are seventh in the Eastern Conference heading into Saturday's clash against Philadelphia Union at PPL Park, level on points with the latter and two adrift of Orlando, who have a bye weekend alongside CONCACAF Champions League final participants Montreal Impact.
"In the bigger picture, nobody firmly believes more in this club and this city than I do," Bradley said following Sunday's victory.
"It's why I'm here, it's why I'm still here, it's why I'm gonna be here. I think that this has the chance to be something totally different, totally unique, something special in MLS.
"I think when you talk about the infrastructure, the training ground we have, the stadium that we have, the city, the support we have in terms of the fan base, the people, the media following, we're relevant in the city."
The Union welcome Toronto to Philadelphia on the back of a three-game winless run following last week's 4-1 drubbing at the hands of fourth-placed Columbus Crew.
Columbus are on the road on Saturday, travelling to DC United, who are second in the East behind New England Revolution on goal difference.
New England and third-placed New York Red Bulls go head-to-head in another blockbuster clash on the same day.
The Red Bulls will be in action at Gillette Stadium just three days after hosting Colorado Rapids, who will be without Marcelo Sarvas for Saturday's match against reigning MLS Cup champions Los Angeles Galaxy.
Sarvas - a former Galaxy midfielder - underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right knee and is expected to miss between four to six weeks.
The only other fixture on Saturday will see Portland Timbers entertain the Western Conference-leading Vancouver Whitecaps, who have lost two of their past three matches.
FC Dallas are only two points adrift in the West as they prepare to kick-off the MLS round at Houston Dynamo on Friday.
Real Salt Lake's clash against the San Jose Earthquakes is the only other scheduled game on Friday.
The round will conclude on Sunday, with Sporting Kansas City hosting the in-form Chicago Fire, while free-falling New York City welcome the Seattle Sounders to the Big Apple.