TORONTO — An obscene sign directed at Toronto in Saputo Stadium on Wednesday night drew little response from Toronto FC officials.
"Honestly I shrugged my shoulders," Toronto FC president Bill Manning said Thursday. "Fans are fans.
"I think all the teams do our best to monitor what's put up in the stadium and sometimes these things just happen."
Early in the first leg of the Canadian Championship final, a three-tiered sign appeared behind one of the goals.
The first two tiers read "Ce que les gens pensent. On ose le dire tout haut," which translates roughly to "What people think. We dare to say it aloud."
The third tier paired an F-bomb with Toronto. The signs were not up for long.
Toronto players were unimpressed by the display.
"I was little bit disappointed and offended as well," said veteran French midfielder Benoit Cheyrou. "What I like in this league is the spirit, the atmosphere. I think it's good for the league and for our team to have rivalries but it has to be smarter than that."
The fierce rivalry between Toronto and Montreal has produced less than classy moments from both sets of fans. Toronto club officials found themselves at odds with one of their supporter groups last season when an obscene banner was raised in its section during an August loss to Montreal at BMO Field.
TFC called the banner "an embarrassment" to the club and its supporters. The Inebriatti group said its members had nothing to do with the sign.
Inebriatti was sanctioned for misbehaviour in Montreal in the final game of the 2015 regular season after Toronto fans lit flares and damaged Saputo Stadium.
The two franchises have met in the playoffs the last two seasons, with Montreal eliminating Toronto in 2015 and Toronto dispatching the Impact in 2016.
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