VANCOUVER, B.C. - Seattle Sounders supporters have had a lot of dreams about Fredy Montero in seasons past. This year, with the Colombian in Vancouver Whitecaps colors, those dreams are becoming the stuff of nightmares.
Montero made it three goals in two games against his former side, with a dramatic equalizer for the 10-man 'Caps in another hotly contested Cascadia Cup matchup, this time a 1-1 draw at BC Place on Wednesday.
Already trailing on a first-half penalty from Nico Lodeiro, the writing seemed on the wall for the Whitecaps when Tony Tchani saw red for a second bookable offense on the hour mark. But Vancouver valiantly fought back to level four minutes later through Montero, before holding on for a hard-earned point.
"I just said to the boys in there that that was as good as win for us," said Vancouver coach Carl Robinson. "We didn't play well. We know they're top of the table, they're a good team, with good players. A penalty conceded, from a mistake from us, a sending off. I didn't know what else could go against us.
"But from that moment onwards, the subs that came on were brilliant. The character shown was brilliant. The mentality shown was phenomenal, and I think we got a deserved point."
It was a feeling echoed by Montero, who took his tally for the season to 11, adding to the brace he scored against the Sounders in a 2-1 win at BC Place back in April.
"It's like a win," Montero said, referencing what could end up a crucial point in a tight playoff race. "We're playing with one of the best teams in MLS, with one man down. It was very tough, but at the end of the day, we pushed harder and we got a goal and we got one point."
The striker didn't get much of a look at goal throughout another tough 90 minutes, but took the one chance that fell to him when it mattered most. And against his former side or not, Montero is out to do what he was brought to Vancouver to do.
"I just want to do the best that I can," Montero said. "I don't see what team is in front of us. I just want to help the team and I'm happy that I scored another one and it means one point for us."
Robinson was delighted by Montero's efforts, quick to praise, acknowledging that goals like those were the very reason the 'Caps made a move to bring him to Vancouver.
"He's in the team to do exactly what he did," Robinson said. "It was a difficult game all round for us, and for them. It wasn't easy, but it's about concentration levels. When balls come in to the box, he comes alive.
"Fredy's in there for that reason. I know he's very calm and won't talk too much after the game because of the respect he has for Seattle, and I applaud him for that, but I was jumping through hoops today when he scored."