DC United vs. Montreal Impact | 2016 MLS East Knockout Round Preview
D.C. UNITED vs. MONTREAL IMPACT
2016 Eastern Conference Knockout Round
RFK Stadium | Washington, D.C.
Thursday, Oct. 27
7:30 pm ET (UniMás, TSN1, TSN5, MLS LIVE, RDS2)
Two Eastern Conference teams on dramatically different runs of form will face off on Thursday when D.C. United welcome the Montreal Impact to RFK Stadium for an Eastern Conference Knockout Round bout. D.C. are the side in a better way right now, as the Black-and-Red have been elevating their performances ahead of the postseason thanks to a much-improved attack. Meanwhile, the Impact have struggled to turn in consistent outings during the past few months, while also dealing with the recent Didier Drogba drama.
This meeting will mark the first time D.C. and Montreal square off in the postseason. United appear to have the advantage, since they have never before lost at home to the Impact. That could well change, but with both attacks more than capable of lighting up the scoreboard, it might come down to which defense can do a better job of protecting its net.
- Analyst: Breaking down Thursday's Knockout Round
- Impact confirm: Drogba to miss playoff clash at DC
- How Mullins shapes the game for United
- Piatti on DC match: "It's a one game final"
- Olsen: DC can take a "great journey" in postseason
- DC not stressing about whether or not Drogba plays
- As playoffs approach, Impact heed Biello's challenge
- Olsen believes D.C. are primed for deep playoff run
- Impact's Biello stands by decision to rest starters in regular season finale
- How D.C.'s midseason pickups made them most explosive team in MLS
D.C. United Snapshot
- 2016 Regular Season Finish: East No. 4 seed (11-10-13 record, 46 pts / 9-4-4 home record)
- Current Form: L-W-W-W-W
- Strengths: Tough to play against, know how to grind out results and win close games, have plenty of postseason experience, and are firing on all cylinders in the attack right now.
- Weaknesses: Do not have a second reliable scoring threat after Patrick Mullins. Have recorded just one shutout since Aug. 14.
- Injuries/Suspensions: Chris Korb (ACL) - Out; Chris Rolfe (concussion) - Out; Charlie Horton (hand) - Out.
- Player to Watch: Patrick Mullins: Might not always score, but has helped dramatically change the way the club plays since arriving by opening things up for the rest of the attack.
- Probable Starting XI: Bill Hamid; Sean Franklin, Steve Birnbaum, Bobby Boswell, Taylor Kemp; Marcelo Sarvas, Lloyd Sam, Jared Jeffrey, Luciano Acosta, Patrick Nyarko; Patrick Mullins.
Montreal Impact Snapshot
- 2016 Regular Season Finish: East No. 5 seed (11-11-12 record, 45 pts / 4-6-7 away record)
- Current Form: L-D-W-W-L
- Strengths: Star power, good complementary pieces in the attack.
- Weaknesses: Run of bad form heading into playoffs, with just two wins in eight games to close out the regular season. Too reliant on Ignacio Piatti to create and score.
- Injuries/Suspensions: Andres Romero (ACL) - out; Didier Drogba (back) - unknown.
- Player to Watch: Ignacio Piatti: With Didier Drogba's reduced role this season, Piatti stepped up and delivered on his promise to score double-digit goals despite being further from goal out on the left wing.
- Probable Starting XI: Evan Bush; Hassoun Camara, Victor Cabrera, Laurent Ciman, Ambroise Oyongo; Patrick Bernier, Marco Donadel, Hernan Bernardello; Dominic Oduro, Matteo Mancosu; Ignacio Piatti.
Referee: Jair Marrufo
Assistant Referees: Frank Anderson (AR1-bench); Corey Rockwell (AR2-opposite)
4th Official: Hilario Grajeda
DC vs. MTL Head-to-Head
All-Time (11 meetings):
D.C. United 5 wins, 16 goals • Montreal Impact 3 wins, 13 goals • Ties 3
All-Time Playoff Meetings:
All-Time in DC (5 meetings):
D.C. United 3 wins, 9 goals • Montreal Impact 0 wins, 3 goals • Ties 2
2016 Meetings (2 meetings):
DC 1, MTL 1 (July 31); MTL 1, DC 1 (Aug. 24)