Ignacio Piatti - reveling in his PK glory - MTLvORL - 2018-06-13

MONTREAL – At the opening of the MLS secondary transfer window, Montreal Impact head coach Remi Garde remained confident that Ignacio Piatti will stay put.

“For the moment, he is here,” Garde said of the Designated Player. “Like in all transfer windows, players can have evolving situations. But in Nacho’s case, I’m counting on him as soon as possible.” 

Piatti has been linked with a move to Argentine club Independiente and a return to former club San Lorenzo. According to Muy Independiente radio in Argentina, Independiente vice president Pablo Moyano said that Piatti would be interested in a move. He added that they are waiting until Friday for more information. 

These rumors don’t seem to bother Garde. Rather, the Frenchman is fixated on having Piatti back in his lineup after missing a large part of the 2019 season due to two different knee injuries

“The only worry I have for Nacho is regarding his health,” Garde said. “Honestly, I don’t have any other worries for the moment.” 

Impact midfielder Samuel Piette admitted that the squad has discussed the rumors. Even without Piatti, Montreal remains in playoff position in the Eastern Conference.  

“Obviously we talked about it, but he’s not able to play so it doesn’t really matter. We just want to get him back,” Piette said. “It’s not really in our hands. It’s between the president and all of that.”

Before his injury troubles, Piatti recorded 59 goals and 33 assists from 2015-18. The hardest part, Piette said, is that the Argentine playmaker has featured in just five games this season.

“It’s disappointing not having him in the squad, and I think he’s the first one to be disappointed,” Piette said. “He wants to help us.” 

Piatti hasn’t been cleared to play yet, but resumed training on Monday. Garde was cautiously optimistic at the thought of seeing Piatti back at full form earlier than predicted. 

“For now, we are on a day-to-day basis,” Garde said. “We try to elevate the intensity on his knee and every time he passes a step it’s a positive. Now we are really getting closer to the ultimate goal and I hope that he will get back with the team quickly.” 

Piatti is on the final year of the 18-month contract extension he signed back in October 2017. The Argentine’s deal includes an option for the 2020 season.