Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Montreal Impact | MLS Match Preview
VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC vs MONTREAL IMPACT
BC PLACE, Vancouver, B.C.
June 25, 2014 (WEEK 16, MLS Game #138)
7 p.m. PT (TSN/RDS)
A key match between Canadian foes kicks off resumption of Major League Soccer regular season play after the World Cup break as Vancouver Whitecaps FC play host to the Montreal Impact on Wednesday evening at BC Place. Whitecaps FC come into the game riding a club-record seven-game undefeated streak, following a late 3-3 draw at Philadelphia Union. Impact hit the road looking for a first away victory this season, coming off a 4-2 home defeat by D.C. United in the final game before the league recess.
REFEREE: Drew Fischer. SAR (bench): Jeff Hosking; JAR (opposite): Baboucarr Jallow; 4th: Tyler Ploeger
MLS Career: 31 games; FC/gm: 26.1; Y/gm: 3.0; R: 2; pens: 9
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: VAN: Matias Laba
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: VAN: Andy O’Brien, Pedro Morales … MTL: Matteo Ferrari, Hernan Bernardello
DISABLED LIST: none
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: VAN: Steven Beitashour (IRN)
ALL-TIME (2 meetings): Whitecaps FC 2 wins, 5 goals … Impact 0 wins, 0 goals … Ties 0
AT VANCOUVER (1 meeting): Whitecaps FC 2 wins, 2 goals … Impact 0 wins, 0 goals … Ties 0
LAST YEAR (MLS)
9/21: MTL 0, VAN 3 (Miller 7; Sanvezzo 89, 91+)
- The teams are meeting in league play for the only time this season.
- The Impact have yet to defeat Whitecaps FC during their time together in Major League Soccer. Vancouver has won both league meetings, including a 3-0 win last year at Stade Saputo.
- The teams also played to a pair of draws in the Canadian Championship final a year ago (the Impact winning the title on away goals).
- Coaches record: Carl Robinson vs. MTL: first game … Frank Klopas vs. VAN: P3 W1 L2 D0
VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC
Vancouver Whitecaps FC extended their undefeated run to seven matches, coming back for a dramatic 3-3 draw with Philadelphia Union on June 7 at PPL Park. Whitecaps FC sit in fifth place in the Western Conference with 21 points from 13 games.
- Whitecaps FC opened the scoring in the 18th minute against the run of play. Nigel Reo Coker was sprung free with a great through ball from Russell Teibert and lofted in a cross from which Erik Hurtado buried a head. Then the lead was doubled in the 42nd minute when Hurtado broke free on the counter, skipped past a defender in the box then played an easy ball across the face of goal to Nicolas Mezquida, who had no trouble finishing the tap-in.
- But Union started their fight back in the 63rd minute when Cristian Maidana put in a cross that Conor Casey met with a diving header that pinged off the near post and settled into the back of the net. Five minutes later, Sebastian Le Toux tied the game just two minutes after coming on as a substitute, finishing off a crisp pass across the face of goal by Vincent Nogueira on a quick counter.
- Three minutes later, the home side took the lead when Casey completed his brace with a low, driven shot into the corner of the net from just outside the penalty area.
- Yet Whitecaps FC had one final answer. Union goalkeeper Zac MacMath was called by referee Jose Carlos Rivero for taking down Darren Mattocks in the box, and Pedro Morales converted the penalty kick in the 81st minute for the equalizer.
- Whitecaps FC head coach Carl Robinson made three changes to the team that defeated the Portland Timbers.4-3 at Providence Park. Johnny Leveron came into central defense for Andy O'Brien, and Nicolas Mezquida and Russell Teibert came into the team for Sebastian Fernandez and Kekuta Manneh.
- VANCOUVER WHITECAPS FC (4-2-3-1): David Ousted - Nigel Reo-Coker, Johnny Leveron, Jay DeMerit (Andy O'Brien 24), Jordan Harvey - Matias Laba (Darren Mattocks 74), Gershon Koffie - Nicolas Mezquida (Sebastian Fernandez 66), Pedro Morales, Russell Teibert - Erik Hurtado.
- The seven-game undefeated streak in league play is the longest in Whitecaps FC’s MLS history, surpassing the six-game stretch without a loss last June 15-July 14.
- “I am delighted because we picked up a point away from home. I’m disappointed for the guys because they put in a fantastic effort here but I think it shows that the club is moving in the right direction that we come away from home, score three goals and we pick up a point,” said Whitecaps FC head coach Carl Robinson. “It’s difficult to play away from home in any venue, we are moving in the right direction but we still got a lot of work to do. But I’m trying slowly to make a style of play for this team and it’s not going to happen overnight.”
- After going his first 21 league games without a goal, Erik Hurtado has now scored a goal in each of his last four games. Including the Canadian Championship, he has a goal in five games in all competitions.
- “We have a lot of players that want to get forward and score goals, create opportunities. We also have players that want to possess and think that showed a little bit when we were ahead, we were trying to maintain and control the game and I think we did pretty well for a bit,” said Hurtado.
- Pedro Morales scored for a second consecutive game, and has five goals in his last five league games since the start of May. In his last six games in all competitions, Morales has six goals and four assists.
- Making his first MLS start after six appearances off the substitutes’ bench, Nicolas Mezquida scored his first Whitecaps FC goal.
- Russell Teibert returned to the starting lineup after coming off the substitutes’ bench in each of the last three games, his first start since April 26.
- “We need to kick it up a notch now. We can't go away from home in July and August and be dead on our feet after an hour or so because we're not going to pick up results or we're going to be hanging on, and I don't want to be a team that's hanging on in the last few minutes and stuff like that,” said Robinson.
- There was an injury blow out of the Philadelphia match as Jay DeMerit tore a tendon in his left ankle and had to come off at the 24-minute mark. DeMerit will be out 4-6 weeks.
- Johnny Leveron made his first start since April 26, as Andy O’Brien was kept out of the team for the first time in league play this season. But OíBrien had to come midway through the first half after the injury to DeMerit.
- “It was a good point away from home, that’s what it’s going to take that game had everything in it. We were fantastic in the first half, great football, but in the second half they were the better team,” said Nigel Reo-Coker. “We defended well to a certain point and to go 3-2 down away from home and get that goal to come back 3-3, it’s a good result. We’re disappointed in the way we conceded goals tonight but overall we have to say it’s a point away from home.”
The Montreal Impact weren’t able to make it back-to-back wins, heading into the World Cup break after a 4-2 loss to D.C. United on June 11 at Stade Saputo. The Impact are in 10th place in the Eastern Conference with 10 points from 12 games.
- United got off to a dream start. In the sixth minute, a quick combination in the middle between Chris Rolfe and Fabian Espindola released Luis Silva behind the Montreal defense, and he coolly finished low past Montreal goalkeeper Troy Perkins.
- But the Impact pulled even in the 11th. A fantastic Hassoun Camara pass reached Jack McInerney, and with little to no angle, he beautifully placed the ball in the side netting at the far post for the equalizer.
- The home side then took the lead in the 22nd minute. Starting on the left of United’s penalty area, Romero dribbled all the way to the other side, skipping through a tackle before unleashing a shot that deflected home. But a minute later termed were again level when Espindola placed a low cross from the left and Nick DeLeon timed his run perfectly, stabbing the ball into the goal.
- United took the lead in the 39th minute. The ball came off Espindola in midfield and fell for Silva, and he hammered a long shot from distance that Perkins got a hand to but could not keep out of the goal.
- The visitors put the game away in first half stoppage time. Rookie defender Steve Birnbaum was adjudged to have been grabbed by Camara in the box by referee Mark Kadlecik, and Sliva blasted in the resulting penalty kick to complete his hat trick.
- Impact head coach Frank Klopas made one change to the team that claimed a 2-0 defeat of the New England Revolution at Stade Saputo. Patrice Bernier came back into the side in place of Marco Di Vaio.
- MONTREAL IMPACT (4-2-3-1): Troy Perkins - Hassoun Camara, Heath Pearce, Wandrille Lefevre, Karl Ouimette - Hernan Bernardello (Maxim Tissot 69), Patrice Bernier - Issey Nakajima-Farran (Marco Di Vaio 53), Felipe Martins, Andres Romero - Jack McInerney.
- The Impact conceded a season-high four goals for the third time this season, the second time in the last three matches (also: Colorado, 1-4, on May 24).
- “I’ll tell you one thing: I’m a very competitive person, and this is not the team I want,” said Impact head coach Frank Klopas. “I want a team that’s going to go on the field and compete and honor the jersey they put on. Every game.”
- Said center back Wandrille Lefevre: “We didn’t come out like the last three games we played. Looking at us defensively, we made mistakes, concentration mistakes, especially after the goals.”
- Jack McInerney scored his third goal over the last four matches, and now has five goals on the season (four since coming to the Impact from Philadelphia).
- Andres Romero scored for a third consecutive game, and now has four goals on the season. All six of the Impact’s goals over their last five games, dating back to May 10, have been scored by either Romero or McInerney.
- Dealing with a groin injury suffered in the second leg of the Canadian Championship final vs. Toronto FC, Justin Mapp missed his first league match of the season. He had started the first 11 before coming off the bench vs. New England.
- After making his first start since April 26 the weekend prior in the win vs. New England, Marco Di Vaio came off the substitutesí bench with the quick turnaround, playing the final 27 minutes.
- The day of the United match, the Impact bolstered their midfield with the signing of 30-year-old Gorka Larrea. He played for Real Sociedad and Levante in La Liga and registered more than 100 games in the Spanish second division.
- The trip to Vancouver marks the start of a stretch where the Impact play four away matches over their next six contests. The Impact are the only team in MLS not to have won on the road this season (0-4-2); their five away goals are matched only by Houston for fewest in the league.
- “This was a really big game before the break,” Klopas said. “We have games in hand, momentum going, and now there's opportunities for the guys to grab those opportunities, and if they don’t, then what are you going to do?”
- Said Patrice Bernier: “It’s unacceptable, because we're given thrashings, so to speak, at home. On the road is one thing, but at home, where we have to show some heart and will, it’s unacceptable.”