KIRKBY, ENGLAND - Saturday, August 10, 2019: Liverpool's substitute Tony Gallacher during the Under-23 FA Premier League 2 Division 1 match between Liverpool FC and Tottenham Hotspur FC at the Academy. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool loanee handed defender’s dream debut in first MLS outing

It was a dream debut for defender Tony Gallacher as he marked the start of his loan spell with Toronto FC on a winning note.

The 21-year-old defender made the short-term switch to the MLS earlier this month in a bold move to continue his development in a first-team environment.

“I just turned 21, I need first team games,” Gallacher said on his arrival. “I’ve been playing U-23 football for two years now and it’s been good, but the minute this came around, it was definitely time for me to kick on with my career.”

The full-back was required to quarantine in Canada before linking up with his new teammates, who had a record of six wins, four draws and two defeats in their opening 12 games of the season.

Toronto have a number of former Premier League players in their dressing room, with Michael Bradley, Alejandro Pozuelo and Jozy Altidore all on hand, where the latter made his 150th appearance for the MLS franchise on the day Gallacher marked his debut.

The Scot was given the nod in the starting XI for Toronto’s meeting with New York City FC, featuring at left-back and playing the first 61 minutes.

It was an outing which asked a lot of the young defender, with New York dominating possession and creating a myriad of chances during his time on the field.

But it would be Toronto who would break the deadlock at the death after a penalty was awarded for handball with just two minutes of regulation time remaining, with ex-Swansea midfielder Pozuelo finding the net to secure a 1-0 win on the road.

Gallacher was rightly in a celebratory mood after the game as he commemorated his “MLS debut with a win and a clean sheet.”

The hour under his belt will present an invaluable learning curve as he builds on his sole senior appearance at Liverpool, which came in the 5-0 defeat at Aston Villa in last season’s League Cup.


Gallacher’s appearance coincided with another weekend of action for fellow Liverpool loanees
Adam Lewis and Morgan Boyes.

Lewis, currently plying his trade with Amiens in Ligue 2, made his fifth appearance for the French outfit in a 0-0 draw with Pau FC. The left-back played the full 90 minutes having established himself as part of their defensive line.

For Boyes, however, he suffered a defeat with Fleetwood Town in just his second outing for Joey Barton’s side, having made his debut in the League Cup at Everton in mid-week.

The 19-year-old featured for the entire game, playing as a centre-back in a back four – with his side on the end of a 1-0 loss to Wimbledon.