TORONTO (AP) — Jermain Defoe scored on a penalty shot and Toronto FC entered the World Cup break with a 1-0 victory over the San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday.
Defoe's goal came in the 26th minute, awarded when Nick Hagglund was pulled down in the box. The former Tottenham Hotspur star stepped up and sent the ball to the far left corner.
The afternoon marked Toronto's last Major League Soccer game before the three-week hiatus for the World Cup, and coach Ryan Nelsen had said a victory would send his team into the break with added confidence and put the squad in a good spot in the league standings.
"We're winning games now, we won that game 1-nil and we're a wee bit disappointed to tell you truth with how we played," Nelsen said.
"That's where I hoped we'd get to was to start to get the wins and the crowd would be going, 'We won but we didn't play very well.' I was praying for that time to happen. Most of the time in the past it was just praying for wins."
The victory moved Toronto's record to 6-4-1. San Jose dropped to 4-5-4.
Toronto had turned its attention to the MLS after its loss to the Montreal Impact in the Canadian Championship, which doesn't count toward league standings, on Wednesday.
It was Defoe's seventh goal with Toronto and fourth game winner, one shy of the franchise record.
"I've enjoyed it," Defoe said, reflecting on his time in the MLS. "As a forward, I try to get off to a good start and hopefully relax and enjoy my football, and then I know the goals will come. Luckily the goals have come.
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