MONTREAL – There’s a phrase Montreal Impact head coach Frank Klopas often uses to explain what he wants from his team: Leave everything on the field.
Well, Klopas seemed to think Montreal had fallen short of doing that after D.C. United handed them a 4-2 loss at Stade Saputo on Wednesday night.
Having witnessed his side fail to put their stamp on the game and concede four goals in 45 minutes, Klopas was particularly displeased by the lack of bite Montreal of which were guilty.
“I’ll tell you one thing: I’m a very competitive person, and this is not the team I want,” Klopas told reporters postgame. “I want a team that’s going to go on the field and compete and honor the jersey they put on. Every game.”
There were no excuses in the Impact locker room. For Impact captain Patrice Bernier, more than the 4-2 score line, it was the way that D.C. United stabbed in goal after goal that was the story.
“It’s unacceptable, because we're given thrashings [des volées], so to speak, at home,” Bernier said. “On the road is one thing, but at home, where we have to show some heart and will, it’s unacceptable.”
Added goalkeeper Troy Perkins: “We let ourselves down. Everyone. No one did their job. We didn’t make the plays they should have made. We just have to be better.”
Despite the defensive continuity – it was the fourth straight game this back four played together – Montreal were carved up by United. Opportunities for added continuity, after the Impact brought in defensive reinforcements in the last 10 days, may have been missed.
“We didn’t come out like the last three games we played,” center back Wandrille Lefèvre said. “Looking at us defensively, we made mistakes, concentration mistakes, especially after the goals.”
Going into the World Cup break, this loss will “hurt” and “weigh on you," Perkins warned. Montreal are bottom of the Supporters Shield standings with 10 points from 13 games. A win would have, at least, lifted them at the symbolic one-point-per-game mark.
And it is worth noting they still have up to three games in hand on direct rivals to make the MLS Cup Playoffs. Still, that's not of much comfort in the immediate aftermath of this game.
“This was a really big game before the break,” Klopas said. “We have games in hand, momentum going, and now there's opportunities for the guys to grab those opportunities, and if they don’t, then what are you going to do?”