Toronto FC head coach Ryan Nelsen was full of praise for his players after they kicked off the 2014 MLS season with a character-building 2-1 win over Seattle Sounders at CenturyLink Field on Saturday.
A pair of goals from Designated Player Jermain Defoe before a consolation from Clint Dempsey set the Reds off for the campaign and it was a performance worthy of adulation from the boss.
The New Zealand great believes his Toronto team landed a massive victory over one of the 2014 title favourites but was not getting carried away after just one triumph.
"Obviously it's a very difficult place to play," he told reporters.
"They are very well coached (by Sigi Schmid) and have some fantastic players. In my opinion, they're probably one of the favorites to win this competition.
"So when you come here, you have to show more than just football ability, but heart and character. We knew as the game went on that it'd get tough and we had to stand up for it. I thought the guys were magnificent in the first half when it came to their football and magnificent in the second half when it came to their desire and their character."
However, Nelsen made sure not to go over the top in his acclaim for the Canadian side when asked if TFC had sent a warning to the rest of the competition.
"No, no, it's one game," he added.
"We tick that box. As I said, we know we've got so much to improve on. We've got to get better in all facets and a couple of guys we need to get up to speed fitness-wise. We tick that box and move on to the next one.
"We have a very difficult game against D.C. next."
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