Expansion teams can usually be excused for feeling a bit of nerves in their first game. But that was no excuse for Jesse Marsch after his team dropped its MLS debut, 2-0 at Vancouver on Saturday night.
“Of course there’s always nerves for the first game, with a new team and everything else,” the Impact head coach told reporters after the game. “But I think our team is still confident in who we are and what we are about. We know we’re going to have to continue to grow through this process, but I'm not sure I would attribute [the team’s performance] to nerves.”
WATCH: Marsch, Arnaud frustrated by early goal
Montreal defender Jeb Brovsky, a former Whitecap who was playing for the first time in front of his old fans, admitted his he and his teammates had felt slightly nervous heading into the contest. He did suggest, though, that pride in the shirt might have played a part.
“Putting on that jersey for the first time, everyone was hyped up,” he told reporters. “Maybe that showed with the first 10 minutes. Everything was pretty frantic, but we settled into the game, and I'm looking forward to next week.”
But the Impact nevertheless believe there are reasons to remain optimistic. With their home opener a mere seven days away, captain Davy Arnaud saw his mates remain true to their principles, which he feels is a sign the Vancouver game could have turned out quite different.
“We tried to stick to our game,” Arnaud said. “I thought we continued to play well and we created chances. Another day, maybe we would have tied this up.”
“We came in here with our mind set on three points,” he added. “We're very disappointed, but our heads are high.”