MONTREAL – Last weekend, as Philadelphia Union ‘keeper Zac MacMath pushed away the best chance that had come Marco Di Vaio’s way since he made his MLS debut, Montreal Impact fans likely wondered when their Designated Player would at last put the ball in the net.
Not that they are worried, of course. They know how Di Vaio can sometimes turn a game around with his goals and that it’s probably just a matter of time before he scores.
SAVE: MacMath foils Di Vaio chance
That makes Wednesday’s match at Stade Saputo against the New England Revolution be a perfect time for Di Vaio to score goal No. 1. The Revolution are a direct rival in the race for the last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, and Di Vaio knows that dropping more points against such teams is a no-no if the Impact want to make it there.
“I’m still calm,” Di Vaio said on Monday. “Me not scoring is more of a problem for the team, as in I didn’t help them. That’s the pressure I feel. I score that last chance on Saturday, the team wins the game. I still work to help the team and I hope it’ll come soon.”
At the very least, Di Vaio is getting more and more involved each game. With every start he is given, he finds himself on the end of more attacks, and his teammates, particularly Felipe and Justin Mapp, are finding him more often, a sign that encourages head coach Jesse Marsch.
“Actually, soccer-wise, he has fit into our group really well and I think our group really likes to play with him,” Marsch told reporters. “I even told him that I’d be more concerned if he wasn't getting chances.”
Against a Revolution team that will want to prove that their home loss to Toronto FC was a fluke, gaining a psychological advantage by capitalizing on early chances will be crucial for Montreal. And Di Vaio is willing to put in extra hours to make the Impact supporters wonder not when he will score, but when an eventual brace or hat trick will come.
“If we want to improve,” Di Vaio said, “we have to work some more.”