Montreal Impact 2, New England Revolution 2 | MLS Match Recap
MONTREAL – Mission accomplished for the Revolution.
New England got the point they needed to claim their spot in the MLS Cup Playoffs on Saturday, with Lee Nguyen’s second half equalizer giving the Revs a 2-2 draw with the Montreal Impact at Stade Saputo.
The result moves the Revolution (15-13-4, 49 points) back into second place in the Eastern Conference, ahead of Sporting Kansas City on the wins tiebreaker. Montreal (6-18-8, 26 points), meanwhile, remains bottom of the East.
Nguyen scored the crucial goal in the 69th minute. Substitute Scott Caldwell dribbled and cut inside from the left only to face a wall of Montreal defenders. He left the ball to Nguyen, whose attempt from outside the area deflected off Calum Mallace’s foot, looping over goalkeeper Evan Bush and tucking into the back of the net.
It was some tough luck for Mallace, whose service led to Montreal’s 12th minute opener. Mallace, on the ball near the halfway line, picked out Marco Di Vaio making a run past the Revolution’s high defensive line. On his first touch of the ball, Di Vaio whacked it past Revs ‘keeper Bobby Shuttleworth for his seventh goal of the season.
Kelyn Rowe equalized for New England four minutes later. On the edge of the area, Rowe played a one-two with Charlie Davies and ended up alone in front of goal before finishing coolly to Bush’s right.
Di Vaio delighted the crowd again in the 40th minute. Another long ball, this time from Andres Romero on the left, found the Italian striker running just right of center. Di Vaio let the ball run across his body, turning a Revs defender before blasting a 15-yard effort in off the far post.
Montreal could have put the Revs down two goals seven minutes after the break. Yet another long ball behind the defense from Romero found Justin Mapp for a breakaway, but Shuttleworth stopped him with his feet on the 1-v-1 chance.
New England’s substitution of Caldwell for Daigo Kobayashi seemed to give Jermaine Jones license to roam forward, but it was Caldwell’s foray that set up Nguyen’s equalizer. Only one shot found the target from then on – Romero’s in the 80th minute – ensuring the Revs’ spot in the postseason.
It'll be a short break for the Revolution, who play at Houston this Thursday. The Impact will return to action next Saturday, when they’ll visit archival Toronto FC.
MLSsoccer.com Men of the Match
|Rank||Player||What We Saw|
|1||Marco Di Vaio||Scored two wonderful goals in his penultimate match at Stade Saputo, showing off all his skill and guile to power the Impact to an upset win.|
|2||Lee Nguyen||Far from his best match, but you can’t argue with that goal. Nguyen’s marvelous chip shot pulled the Revs even at 2-2 and clinched New England’s place in the postseason.|
|3||Calum Mallace||Provided a peach of an assist on Di Vaio’s opener and did plenty to help the Impact lock down the Revs’ creative midfield.|