Di Vaio marks Nesta's Impact debut w/ long-awaited goal

MONTREAL – Alessandro Nesta’s timing on the soccer field is world-renowned. On Saturday, it became clear that that his timing in life is outstanding as well.

In his first game in MLS since joining the Montreal Impact, the legendary Italian center back was on the field to witness to his friend Marco Di Vaio’s first goal in the league, which had been a long time coming.

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“I felt really happy for him,” Nesta told reporters after the Impact’s 3-1 win against the Red Bulls. “It's been a few games already and he hadn't scored, but he finally has, and in a very important game against New York.”

GOAL: Di Vaio opens MLS account

The defender expressed his satisfaction with the way the team played, and said he feels good about his team’s chances of picking up more wins and making the playoffs.

Di Vaio, for his part, explained how happy he was for his family, who moved here upon the striker’s transfer, but he also went out of his way to praise the other hero on the night, Brazilian playmaker Felipe, who helped set up all three goals.

“He’s a good team player,” Di Vaio said, “and he played a good game.”

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For head coach Jesse Marsch, the new faces in the Impact’s defense – Nesta and partner Nelson Rivas – were instrumental in restricting the New York Red Bulls to an admittedly good finish by Thierry Henry. Marsch saw his group remain compact, with two banks of four that communicated well with each other to hinder Henry’s tendencies to drift infield to find dangerous pockets of space.

And most of all, he was pleased that the Impact remained composed in the wake of the Frenchman’s goal, a chip over goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts.

“It doesn't take away from anything that Shavar [Thomas] or Hassoun [Camara] did when they played in there, but those guys help settle the game down and make sense of things for us,” Marsch said.