DC United vs. Montreal Impact | MLS Match Preview

D.C. United vs. Montreal Impact, August 3, 2013

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D.C. UNITED vs MONTRÉAL IMPACT
RFK MEMORIAL STADIUM, Washington, D.C.
August 3, 2013 (WEEK 23, MLS Game #204)
7:30 p.m. ET (CSN-DC; TVA)

A pair of clubs looking for a vital victory meet when D.C. United play host to the Montréal Impact on Saturday evening at RFK Stadium. United are riding a five-game winless streak, opening this homestand with a 2-1 loss to the New England Revolution last weekend. The Impact put an end to a five-game winless streak of their own last weekend, getting a late goal for a 1-0 win against Sporting Kansas City that kept them within striking distance of the Eastern Conference lead.

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REFEREE: Jorge Gonzalez. AR1 (bench): C.J. Morgante; AR2 (opposite): Brian Dunn; 4th: Daniel Fitzgerald
MLS Career: 101 games; FC/gm: 25.1; Y/gm: 3.3; R: 35; pens: 25

DISABLED LIST: none
SUSPENDED: none
WARNINGS:
SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: none
SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: DC: Perry Kitchen, Daniel Woolard, John Thorrington … MTL: Dennis Iapichino, Hassoun Camara, Felipe Martins, Jeb Brovsky, Matteo Ferrari, Davy Arnaud, Patrice Bernier
INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: none

HEAD-TO-HEAD
ALL-TIME (3 meetings): United 1 win, 4 goals … Impact 1 win, 4 goals … Ties 1
AT RFK STADIUM (2 meetings): United 1 win, 4 goals … Impact 0 wins, 1 goal … Ties 1
FUTURE MATCH: 8/17: Montreal Impact vs. D.C. United, 7 p.m. (TSN2, RDS)

2013 (MLS)
4/18: DC 1, MTL 1 (Santos 72 – Corradi 68)
6/30: DC 3, MTL 0 (Pontius 46+; Russell 50; Salihi 91+)
8/25: MTL 3, DC 0 (Di Vaio 24; Bernier 50, 92+)

  • The teams evenly split their three matches in the Impact’s inaugural MLS season. Each team won 3-0 at home; the teams played to a draw in the first meeting ever between the clubs, also at RFK Stadium.
  • Coaches record: Ben Olsen v MTL: P3 W1 L1 D1 … Marco Schallibaum vs. DC: first game

D.C. UNITED
D.C. United had their current winless run stretched to five matches, the New England Revolution coming back for a 2-1 win Saturday at RFK Stadium. United are in 10th place in the Eastern Conference with 10 points from 21 matches.

LAST MATCH

  • United took the lead in the eighth minute. United midfielder John Thorrington played a quick ball to Luis Silva some 25 yards out from goal. He quickly turned blasted a dipping shot under the outstretched arms of a diving Bobby Shuttleworth in the Revolution goal.
  • New England leveled the score in the 54th minute when a cross by Chris Tierney found its way through a host of bodies and landed at the feet of Dimitry Imbongo, who tapped it home off a defender and past United goalkeeper Joe Willis.
  • Nine minutes later, the Revolution took the lead. Revs forward Saer Sene blistered a shot toward the upper 90 which beat Willis, bounced off the crossbar, then off the far post and landed directly in front of goal where Diego Fagundez headed home the rebound into an empty net.
  • United head coach Ben Olsen made five changes to the team that suffered a 4-1 loss to the Chicago Fire at Toyota Park. James Riley and Dejan Jakovic came into the back four, Jared Jeffrey and Kyle Porter started in midfield and Conor Doyle came in up top, in place of Chris Korb, Ethan White, Perry Kitchen, Sainey Nyassi and Carlos Ruiz.
  • D.C. UNITED (4-4-1-1): Joe Willis - James Riley, Daniel Woolard, Dejan Jakovic, Taylor Kemp - Nick DeLeon, Jared Jeffrey (Lionard Pajoy 79), John Thorrington, Kyle Porter (Sainey Nyassi 59) - Luis Silva - Conor Doyle (Dwayne De Rosario 66).

TEAM NEWS

  • United scored the game’s opening goal for just the fourth time this season. They have scored more than one goal in a game only once – the 3-2 loss to Philadelphia on April 21.
  • Luis Silva scored for a second consecutive game, his first two matches since coming to D.C. United from Toronto FC.
  • “Silva is a real piece, and we are looking to add as many real pieces to the club right now. I’ve got one eye here, presently, on the week-to-week MLS to try to continue to tinker and find out which guys are going to be around,” Olsen said. “I’ve got another eye on the Open Cup, which is a big deal, and finding out what the best team is that we have to put out there. Then I’ve got my third eye on the future of this club. That’s a very important thing right now.”
  • Silva filled an attacking midfield role behind Conor Doyle, who was run out as a lone striker in his MLS and United debut.
  • “[In Toronto] I was playing as a forward. Here, the coach is trying to give me the freedom to play as a No. 10 and I have the freedom to go anywhere on the field,” Silva said. “I’m not pressured or anything. I’m just trying to play my football. Things are going to come our way, obviously I proved it in the last two games. We’ve just got to get that win.”
  • Said Olsen: “[Conor] Doyle got here this week, and he has only been in two training sessions. We came across a few injuries late with [Carlos] Ruiz and [Casey] Townsend, and we figured it was a good chance to try him and I thought he did fine. It’s not an easy exercise for him to go out in his first game in a while with new teammates, but I saw good things. He puts himself in good spots and physically he can do the work, but he probably has to be a little more combative.”
  • Homegrown Player Jared Jeffrey also made his full professional debut, starting wide on the right of the midfield and playing 79 minutes.
  • Jared [Jeffrey] did fine. Jared hung in there, and hasn’t had a lot of games either as we still try to get guys where they need to be,” said Olsen.
  • Dwayne De Rosario made his first appearance since June 29, coming on as a substitute for the final 24 minutes.
  • “If you’re asking me, I want to play 90 minutes, 100 percent. But I haven’t played in a while, so you try and get game fitness as you play,” De Rosario said. “I tried to come in and spark the team and give an aggressive spark going forward and try to do what I can to help them out.”

MONTREAL IMPACT
The Montréal Impact put an end to their winless streak after five matches, scoring a dramatic winner for a 1-0 victory against Sporting Kansas City on Saturday evening at Stade Saputo. The Impact are tied for second place in the Eastern Conference with 35 points from 20 matches.

LAST MATCH

  • The game's lone goal came well into second-half stoppage time. Taking advantage of a smart dummy by Patrice Bernier, Marco Di Vaio fed an unmarked Blake Smith coming in from the left wing, and he coolly slid his finish through SKC goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen's legs to secure a stunning win.
  • Impact head coach Marco Schällibaum made one change to the team that reached a scoreless draw with FC Dallas at Stade Saputo. Marco Di Vaio came back into the team in place of Daniele Paponi.
  • MONTREAL IMPACT (4-3-3): Troy Perkins - Hassoun Camara, Matteo Ferrari, Alessandro Nesta, Jeb Brovsky - Davy Arnaud, Felipe Martins (Andres Romero 66), Patrice Bernier - Justin Mapp, Marco Di Vaio (Andrew Wenger 90), Sanna Nyassi (Blake Smith 80).

TEAM NEWS

  • The Impact were nearly shut out for a third consecutive match before Blake Smith hit for the dramatic winner, the fourth goal scored by the Impact after the 90th minute this season.
  • “The players gave us a lot physically. The final pass maybe wasn’t working well, but they worked 100 miles an hour,” Impact head coach Marco Schällibaum said. “Blake has learned a lot since the first day I met him. He’s quietly getting into a very good place. He wants to go forward, and tonight's a gift not only for us, but also for him.”
  • It was also the Impact’s first victory since June 19, ending an 0-2-3 run since. It was the club’s longest winless run in MLS since ending its inaugural season without a victory in its final six matches.
  • “We had another good game defensively today. They had very few scoring chances. We played right up until the very end and we never gave up tonight, even in stoppage time and for me as a coach, it was a happy ending when you make a change and bring a player who scores the winning goal for us,” Schällibaum said. “We deserved to win. It’s important that we point out that we didn’t steal this game in the final minutes. We earned it all game long.”
  • Said midfielder Patrice Bernier: “It’s a great win, but especially like that, at the end, with all the effort we put in. We were solid in the first half, when we suffered a lot, possession-wise. But to come back and finish the game like that, we can’t ask for more.”
  • Smith was making his 12th league appearance of the season, all as a substitute, and scored his second professional goal. His first had come May 25 vs. Philadelphia.
  • “The win was huge for us today and that’s all that really needs to be said,” Smith said. “We fought hard and played the entire 90 plus minutes and we deserved the win. I want to come in and give the team a spark and help for one final push when I come in the game.”
  • Marco Di Vaio returned to the lineup as the spearhead striker after a one-match absence and recorded his second assist of the season.
  • “We played with two strikers versus Houston and we won 2-0. We have been a little tired and out of gas lately, but that’s soccer. It’s normal that players get fatigued at moments and it’s a phase we were going through,” said Schällibaum. “But this team has that fighting spirit and we have seen that all season long. With a 1-0 win against a team like this and with a performance like we had, it’s good. But it doesn’t mean we won’t go back to the 4-4-2 if we feel we need to.”