MONTREAL – Those costly mental lapses.
The Montreal Impact thought their overall performance deserved a better ending. They did fight back into a game that had a “here we go again” feeling when Dom Dwyer headed the opener in from a Matt Besler long throw in the fourth minute – the third goal Montreal conceded in such situations against Sporting KC this season.
But a late miscue between Heath Pearce and Troy Perkins gifted Dwyer the winner for Sporting Kansas City in a 2-1 Impact loss on Saturday night at Stade Saputo. As the ball rolled back towards Montreal's box, neither teammate stepped up to deal with the ball, and Sporting pounced on the free ball, as Dwyer eventually got it and scored the winner in the 89th minute.
“We had a good performance, but in the end, I think we should have walked away with points tonight,” Montreal head coach Frank Klopas told reporters. “You look at the last two games, it was the same thing. I don’t know how we find ways to lose games like this. Sometimes, some breaks aren’t going our way right now. It’s a difficult one. I feel bad for the guys, but it’s my responsibility to find solutions and I’m going to keep trying to do so.”
Klopas made a point of not criticizing either Perkins or Pearce directly.
“From the outside, everything seems very easy, even for me,” Klopas said. “I’m like Pelé from the outside when I watch a lot of the games. But the speed of play there, at that moment, maybe it’s a second of miscommunication, the ball is coming, one guy thinks it’s going to roll faster than it is – it’s a split second decision.”
Perkins, livid after the goal, was calmer in the locker room. He had yet to collect his thoughts on why the miscue happened.
“It’s just miscommunication, I guess,” Perkins said. “And it cost us.”
And, captain Patrice Bernier added, Montreal can’t afford them. They’re now nine points behind the fifth-placed New York Red Bulls, and that rope is getting tighter.
“We have to keep our heads high, because we can’t say they outplayed us, controlled and could have won 3-0,” Bernier said. “The game could have gone either way. A tie would have been ideal. We have to keep going, keep our heads high and maintain that standard of performance. But we have to stay alert 95, 96, 97 minutes in.”