MONTREAL – Make it three in a row for Chivas USA.
The Goats earned their third straight tie on Sunday night, including their second straight on the road, after a 1-1 tie against the East-leading Impact at Stade Saputo.
It's a reversal of fortunes for Chivas USA, who are still winless in 13 league matches since a 2-1 win over Vancouver on March 30. And on Sunday they took the lead after 55 minutes through Eric Avila, only to concede an equalizer with 10 minutes remaining on a penalty kick converted by Montreal's Patrice Bernier.
FULL BOX SCORE AND MATCH STATISTICS
The Impact, for their part, are winless in three but still remain tops in the Eastern Conference with 31 points. Chivas USA stay rooted to the bottom of the West on 14 points.
As is usually the case at Stade Saputo, the Impact held on to the ball in the early stages looking to feed forward Marco Di Vaio, who had scored nine goals in seven home games entering Sunday's tilt. Sanna Nyassi – the liveliest of the 22 players in the first half – created a fifth-minute chance for the Italian with a through ball, but Chivas goalkeeper Dan Kennedy covered his angles well and stopped Di Vaio’s shot.
Chivas took only three shots to Montreal’s seven during the opening stanza, but they forced the best save of the night. Goats forward José Correa cut the ball back to Josue Soto, who unleashed a low drive from 30 yards out, only for Troy Perkins to dive to his left and deny him.
The Goats' first clear foray into the Montreal area resulted in a goal, though. Charging into the left side of the box, Correa crossed low but the ball rolled back into play. Avila crushed it off the crossbar and seemingly back onto the goal line. The Chivas bench appealed for a goal, but Avila erased any doubts by collecting the rebound and finally beating Perkins for his second of the season.
OPTA CHALKBOARD: Impact pepper Goats, but score just once
Montreal increased the pressure and were finally rewarded when Daniele Paponi released Nyassi into the box to Kennedy's right. Defender Mario de Luna made the sliding challenge, but he caught Nyassi, leading referee Allen Chapman to point to the spot. And Bernier made no mistake, beating Kennedy to his left.
Chivas USA complete their spell on the road on Friday when the Philadelphia Union welcome them at PPL Park. The next day, June 13, a date with the New York Red Bulls awaits the Impact at Red Bull Arena.
MLSsoccer.com Men of the Match
|Rank||Player||What We Saw|
|1||Eric Avila||Despite all his tireless running, still has the sharpness to put away Goats' most dangerous attack of the night. Team's best finisher.|
|2||Jorge Villafaña||Chivas USA worked hard at Stade Saputo and Villafana may have logged the most miles of anyone on the pitch -- on both sides of the ball.|
|3||Sanna Nyassi||The impact attack had a dull edge to it in this match, except for when the ball was at Nyassi's feet. The one player with the clearest ideas for Montreal.|