Preview: Red Bulls vying for season sweep of Montreal

Montreal Impact vs New York Red Bulls, July 28

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MONTRÉAL IMPACT vs NEW YORK RED BULLS
STADE SAPUTO, Montréal, Qué.
July 28, 2012 (WEEK 21, MLS Game #199)
7:30 p.m. ET (TVA; MSG)

The Montréal Impact and New York Red Bulls meet for the third time when the clubs face off Saturday evening at Stade Saputo. The Red Bulls have won both previous meetings, including a 2-1 win in Montréal in their last meeting in May. The Impact return home after seeing their road losing streak continue last weekend in a 3-0 loss in Houston, while the Red Bulls continued their home unbeaten streak in a 2-0 win over Philadelphia.

REFEREE: Abbey Okulaja. SAR (bench): Philippe Briere; JAR (opposite): Scott Kachmarik; 4th: Mathieu Bourdeau
MLS Career: 114 games; FC/gm: 26.8; Y/gm: 3.2; R: 19; pens: 26

DOWNLOAD FULL GAME GUIDE HERE (PDF)

INJURY REPORT:

  • MONTREAL IMPACT – OUT: DF Jeb Brovsky (R hamstring strain); DF Zarek Valentin (L ankle sprain); FW Bernardo Corradi (L knee ACL tear); PROBABLE: DF Matteo Ferrari (R quad strain); DF Nelson Rivas (abdomen)
  • NEW YORK RED BULLS – OUT: DF Brandon Barklage (R hamstring strain); PROBABLE: DF Rafa Marquez (L calf strain); MF Jan Gunnar Solli (R hamstring strain); MF Teemu Tainio (R knee sprain)

INTERNATIONAL ABSENCES: none
SUSPENDED: none
WARNINGS:

  • SUSPENDED NEXT YELLOW CARD: NY: Dax McCarty
  • SUSPENDED AFTER TWO YELLOW CARDS: MTL: Bernardo Corradi, Collen Warner … NY: Mehdi Ballouchy, Kenny Cooper, Joel Lindpere

HEAD-TO-HEAD
ALL-TIME (2 meetings): Impact 0 wins, 3 goals … Red Bulls 2 wins, 7 goals … Ties 0
AT MONTRÉAL (1 meeting): Impact 0 wins, 1 goal … Red Bulls 1 win, 2 goals … Ties 0

2012 (MLS):
3/31: NY 5, MTL 2 (Henry 28, 56, 89; Cooper 48+; Ballouchy 72 – Nyassi 18; Mapp 38)
5/19: MTL 1, NY 2 (Corradi 21 – Cooper 37; Richards 67)
• The teams are meeting for the third time this season. In the last meeting, the Red Bulls claimed a 2-1 victory at Olympic Stadium.
• In the first meeting ever between the clubs, Thierry Henry scored a hat trick as the Red Bulls took a 5-2 win on March 31 at Red Bull Arena.
• Coaches record: Jesse Marsch vs. NY: P2 W0 L2 T0 … Hans Backe vs. MTL: P2 W2 L0 T0

LAST MEETING (MLS):
• The Impact opened the scoring in the 21st minute after Red Bulls defender Markus Holgersson was adjudged to have handled a header by Bernardo Corradi. The Italian striker duly converted the penalty to the right of Red Bulls goalkeeper Ryan Meara.
• Eight minutes before halftime, however, Impact left back Tyson Wahl was also called for a handball in the box, leaving Kenny Cooper to score from the spot for his 10th goal of the season.
• The Red Bulls scored the winner in the 67th minute. Left back Roy Miller started a counterattack and crossed a ball into the box which was deflected by Montreal goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts. The ball bounced straight to Dane Richards, who blasted home from the heart of the area.
• MONTREAL IMPACT (4-4-2): Donovan Ricketts - Jeb Brovsky, Nelson Rivas (Andrew Wenger 72), Matteo Ferrari, Tyson Wahl - Davy Arnaud, Collen Warner (Justin Braun 84), Felipe Martins, Sanna Nyassi - Miguel Montano, Bernardo Corradi (Lamar Neagle 80).
• NEW YORK RED BULLS (4-1-4-1): Ryan Meara - Brandon Barklage, Heath Pearce, Markus Holgersson, Roy Miller - Dax McCarty – Dane Richards, Victor Palsson (sent off 58), Joel Lindpere, Connor Lade - Kenny Cooper (Jhonny Arteaga 90).

MONTREAL IMPACT
The Montréal Impact fell for the fifth consecutive time on the road, dropping a 3-0 result to the Houston Dynamo on Saturday evening at BBVA Compass Stadium. The Impact are in seventh place in the Eastern Conference with 24 points from 23 matches.

LAST MATCH

HIGHLIGHTS: HOU 3, MTL 0

• The Dynamo opened the scoring in the seventh minute. Macoumba Kandji received a pass in the area and, after his first shot was parried by Montreal goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts, he found the back of the net when his rebound effort hit both Ricketts and Impact defender Zarek Valentin.
• The Dynamo doubled the lead in the 84th minute when center back Bobby Boswell snapped home a corner kick from second half substitute Brad Davis.
• Kandji capped his brace by streaking down the left side and hitting a powerful right-footed shot into the far upper corner five minutes later.
• Impact head coach Jesse Marsch made three changes to the team that defeated the New England Revolution 2-1 at Stade Saputo. Zarek Valentin came in at fullback for Jeb Brovsky, and Lamar Neagle and Collen Warner came into the midfield for Patrice Bernier and Justin Mapp.
• MONTREAL IMPACT (4-2-3-1): Donovan Ricketts - Zarek Valentin (Karl Ouimette 26), Shavar Thomas, Hassoun Camara, Dennis Iapichino - Collen Warner, Lamar Neagle (Justin Mapp 74) - Davy Arnaud, Felipe Martins, Sanna Nyassi - Marco Di Vaio (Patrice Bernier 61).

TEAM NEWS
• The Impact have lost five consecutive games on the road since winning their only league match away from Stade Saputo in Kansas City on May 5.
• “We played against a good team in a really tough place to play,” said Impact head coach Jesse Marsch. “It hurts giving up the first goal because we were the better team in the first six minutes. The way we pushed the game in the second half up until their second goal was very good and showed a lot of character. I think we are a bit unlucky to come out of this game without a point.”
• The Impact have lost a league-high 10 games on the road, and have taken just four points from their travels, tied for second-fewest in MLS with FC Dallas (Portland Timbers have two road points).
• "At the moment we are not consistent," said defender Shavar Thomas. "In most of the games that we’ve lost, we were in it for 80-85 minutes and then we make a mistake or give up a bad goal. We’re going to pull through. We’re learning very quickly and in the end, it will come for us."
• Impact Academy product Karl Ouimette made his full professional debut, coming on after just 26 minutes when Zarek Valentin suffered an ankle injury.
• “I’ve waited for this moment for a long time,” said Ouimette. “I gave everything on the field today. I think I was able to defend well and to control the ball. I was able to quickly adjust to my position.”
• The visit by the Red Bulls starts a spell of four games out of the next five at Stade Saputo for the Impact, the first of back-to-back games at Pie IX.
• “It’s going to be huge for us,” midfielder Lamar Neagle said. “We haven't really been able to get momentum going, like a four- or five-game winning streak, this year, so hopefully, at home, we can take care or business pretty well.”
• On Tuesday, the Impact played to a 1-1 draw with French Ligue 1 side Olympique Lyonnais, the seven-time champions of France, and then won the friendly in a post-match penalty shootout. Jérémy Pied opened the scoring after 28 minutes for Lyon, with Impact rookie Andrew Wenger leveling 11 minutes later.
• Here’s the Impact team: Evan Bush – Dennis Iapichino (Josh Gardner 46’), Alessandro Nesta (Matteo Ferrari 63’), Nelson Rivas (Calum Mallace 46’), Karl W. Ouimette; Sanna Nyassi (Evan James 63’), Patrice Bernier (Sinisa Ubiparipovic 46’), Felipe (Collen Warner 46’), Justin Mapp (Lamar Neagle 46’); Marco Di Vaio (Bajram Fetai 46’), Andrew Wenger (Eduardo Sebrango 46’)

NEW YORK RED BULLS
The New York Red Bulls won their second home game in four days, defeating the Philadelphia Union 2-0 on Saturday afternoon at Red Bull Arena. The Red Bulls now lead the Eastern Conference, with 38 points from 21 games.

LAST MATCH

HIGHLIGHTS: NY 2, CHI 0

• Both goals came from the same source on either side of halftime. In the 43rd minute, Joel Lindpere fed Connor Lade with a pass down the left, and the rookie hit a pinpoint cross that Kenny Cooper rose to and headed home.
• It was déjà vu not long after halftime. Lade and Thierry Henry combined on the left flank before the Frenchman whipped in a ball that Cooper finished with his head, doubling the lead in the 58th minute.
• Red Bulls head coach Hans Backe made two changes to the team that defeated the Chicago Fire 1-0 at Red Bull Arena. Connor Lade and Kenny Cooper came into the team in place of Mehdi Ballouchy and Victor Palsson.
• NEW YORK RED BULLS (4-1-3-2): Bill Gaudette - Brandon Barklage (Jonathan Borrajo 16), Markus Holgersson, Wilman Conde, Roy Miller - Dax McCarty - Sebastien Le Toux, Joel Lindpere (Mehdi Ballouchy 87), Connor Lade - Kenny Cooper, Thierry Henry.

TEAM NEWS
• The Red Bulls completed an unbeaten three-game homestand where they took seven of a possible nine points, and remained undefeated at Red Bull Arena, one of two unbeaten home teams in MLS (along with the Houston Dynamo).
• “If we can keep this home record we will get into the playoffs but I still think ... we want to be better,” said Backe. “We’re picking up results but still we have the feeling we need to be better in our attacking game, in our possession. We need to be more precise.”
• For Kenny Cooper, the goals were his first since May 23, a seven-game span without scoring after four consecutive matches with goals and 11 goals in his opening 13 games.

WATCH: Tim Cahill arrives at New York practice

• “For strikers, there will be phases during a season where they don’t score in six, seven, eight weeks,” Backe told reports after the match. “But everyone knows that strikers are on the pitch to score or set up goals and for the confidence, of course, the two headers [are important].”
• Said Cooper: “It’s something you may be aware of, but it’s important to stay positive and keep believing. This team, you can be confident that we’re going to create chances. Fortunately, I was able to get on the end of some today.”
• The game in Montréal is the first of back-to-back road games, and the first of four over the next six on the road for the Red Bulls.
• “[Head coach Hans Backe] has put an emphasis on playing well at home and we take it upon ourselves really every day that we play in front of our fans to give a good result and keep them coming back,” Connor Lade said. “We feel like we can really get after teams more at home and just make teams fear coming in here.”
• Rookie Lade contributed his first two-assist game in MLS, his second and third assists of his league career.
• Goalkeeper Bill Gaudette has now kept back-to-back clean sheets after a 2-2 draw with Seattle in his Red Bulls debut.