MONTREAL – And then there were three.
Felipe’s second goal of the season gave the Montreal Impact their first win of the season, as they beat the Philadelphia Union 1-0 on a rainy Saturday afternoon at Stade Saputo. The result leaves only the Chicago Fire, Portland Timbers and San Jose Earthquakes as the remaining winless teams in MLS.
The win also lifts the Impact to ninth place in the Eastern Conference, leapfrogging a Fire team that is on a bye week. Philadelphia, now winless in seven games, remain in seventh place, but they’ll fall to eighth if Houston pick up a point against Portland on Sunday.
The only goal of the encounter came in the 15th minute. Impact captain Patrice Bernier intercepted Sheanon Williams’ pass in midfield and considered his options before firing a powerful shot that Zac MacMath failed to control. The ball fell for the onrushing Felipe, who blasted it in from close range.
Jack McInerney and Andrew Wenger both played their first game against their old teams. Wenger provided strong build-up play for Union teammates like Fábinho, Danny Cruz and Vincent Nogueira, and McInerney started on the left of the Impact's midfield but switched positions several times with Marco Di Vaio before closing out the game as a lone striker.
Both young forwards got their chances. Wenger got one of Philadelphia’s two clear opportunities of the first half as he combined with Cruz on the edge of the box before being denied by Montreal goalkeeper Troy Perkins. McInerney had to wait until he was sent through on goal in the early goings of the second half, but MacMath tipped his attempt wide for a corner kick.
McInerney’s foray forward was one of few Montreal attacks in the second half. Philadelphia pushed hard for an equalizer and had a goal denied for offside in the process.
Montreal held on, however, and they did so despite having three members of their back line play with early yellow cards. Hassoun Camara, who was booked for a league-leading fifth time this season, will miss Montreal’s next MLS date when they host Kansas City on May 10.
Next up for Philadelphia is a trip to Seattle on May 3. Montreal, for their part, face either Ottawa or Edmonton away in the Amway Canadian Championship on May 7 before returning to league play.
MLSsoccer.com Men of the Match
|Rank||Player||What We Saw|
|1||Felipe||Aside from scoring the winner, Felipe wreaked havoc for much of the game and that kept the Union's midfield and defense extremely busy.|
|2||Hassoun Camara||Might have been lucky to not get sent off with a second yellow on a couple of occasions, but did very well in defending Philadelphia's offensive onslaught in the second half.|
|3||Maurice Edu||The veteran midfielder was the one played on the Union who looked sharp for much of the 90 minutes, moving the ball quickly and breaking up several Montreal attacks.|