The Montreal Impact have clinched a spot in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, punching their ticket with a 3-2 win against D.C. United at Audi Field on Decision Day presented by AT&T that saw Montreal erase a 2-1 deficit in the second half.
The result gives Montreal the No. 9 seed in the Eastern Conference, where they finished at 26 points from 23 matches, with Inter Miami CF getting the No. 10 spot after their 2-1 win over FC Cincinnati. D.C. United, meanwhile, was eliminated from the playoff race after being in position to clinch a spot prior to an equalizing goal from Montreal's Victor Wanyama in the 74th minute and a late winner from Romell Quioto
The match got off to a roaring start with end-to-end action as the sides swapped goals inside the opening 15 minutes
D.C. United were forced to burn an early sub when forward Gelmin Rivas got injured after a collision with Montreal goalkeeper Clement Diop. Both players were shaken up on the play, but Diop stayed in while Rivas was replaced by Ola Kamara.
Still, the hosts were on the front foot to start, putting pressure on the Montreal backline that culminated with Donovan Pines' opener in the 9th minute. The defender rose to meet a corner kick from Julian Gressel and cashed the header into the net to give D.C. the 1-0 lead.
But Montreal would respond in short order, as Bojan crashed the far post following a long throw-in, slotting home a tap-in finish off a feed from Quioto just four minutes later.
D.C. snatched the lead back in the 33rd minute off another corner kick finish, however, this time from Kamara, who headed home the feed from Edison Flores, giving D.C. a 2-1 result that would have secured their postseason positioning if they could have seen it out.
It wasn't to be though, as Montreal found the leveler on a set piece finish of their own in the 74th minute, as Wanyama got the comeback started with a thundering header off a feed from Quioto.
Quioto then notched the dagger just before second-half stoppage time, converting a point-blank finish at the end of a counterattack, sealing the 3-2 final and clinching Montreal's postseason berth.
- 9' - DC - Donovan Pines | WATCH
- 13' - MTL - Bojan | WATCH
- 33' - DC - Ola Kamara | WATCH
- 74' - MTL - Victor Wanyama | WATCH
- 88' - MTL - Romell Quioto | WATCH
- THE BIG PICTURE: It's a heartbreaker for D.C. United, who were just minutes from salvaging a playoff spot after a difficult season that has seen the departure of longtime head coach Ben Olsen, before a late-season resurgence under interim coach Chad Ashton. Instead, it's the Impact who will be headed to the playoffs, a big accomplishment for head coach Thierry Henry and his side, who have faced plenty of adversity themselves this season and deserve credit for a big-game performance that has them in the dance.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: It was Wanyama's equalizer that flipped the script of both match and the Eastern Conference playoff picture.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Romell Quioto put the team on his back when it needed him the most, assisting on that equalizer and taking matters into his own hands with the late winner.
- DC: End of season
- MTL: Friday, November 20 at New England Revolution (6:30 pm ET | FS1, FOX Deportes in US; TSN, TVAS in Canada) | Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, Play-In Match