NEW YORK – Ignacio Piatti scored a brace after Dominic Oduro tallied early as the Montreal Impact defeated New York City FC, ruining Frank Lampard’s Major League Soccer debut on Saturday afternoon at Yankee Stadium.
The Impact raced in front in the fifth minute as Oduro shielded defender Jefferson Mena, latched onto a lobbed ball over the top by Laurent Ciman and tapped past a charging Josh Saunders before knocking in his eighth goal of the year from the edge of the six-yard box.
Montreal (8-8-3) made it 2-0 in similar fashion in the 32nd minute when Andres Romero played a ball over the top to Piatti, who separated himself from Jason Hernandez and chipped over Saunders for his seventh goal of the season.
It appeared NYCFC (6-10-6) pulled a goal back just before halftime, but David Villa was correctly ruled offside.
Three minutes into the second half, Villa came close again when he danced along the end line, cut back inside and fired a shot on frame, but it deflected out for a corner kick.
Villa cut NYCFC’s deficit to 2-1 from the penalty spot in the 68th minute after referee Jose Carlos Rivero ruled Ambroise Oyongo tripped Tommy McNamara in the box. Evan Bush guessed correctly, but couldn’t stop Villa’s low shot as the Spaniard scored his 13th goal of the season.
A minute later, Yankee Stadium erupted as Lampard came on for his long-awaited NYCFC debut, replacing Andrew Jacobson in the 69th minute.
The Impact had a chance to put the game away in the 72nd minute when they had numbers on a quick counter, but Piatti missed his open shot from 12 yards out.
Rivero awarded the visitors a penalty in the 84th minute when Saunders appeared to pull down Piatti after the Argentine’s initial shot attempt. Piatti scored low to Saunders' right to put Montreal in front, 3-1.
NYCFC, though, came roaring back with McNamara scoring low inside the far post following a sequence of passes from Villa to Angelino to the second-year midfielder, who buried his fourth goal of the season in the 85th.
Villa had a pair of chances late to equalize, but put both of his shots directly into Bush.
The Impact return to Stade Saputo to face the New York Red Bulls on Wednesday in the opener of a four-match homestand. NYCFC will travel across the Hudson River for the third and final meeting with the Red Bulls next Sunday at Red Bull Arena.