What to watch for - August 28 2020 - Montreal vs Toronto

This Week in MLS: Impact Close to Capping Comeback and Securing Place in Canadian Championship Final

Impact Close to Capping Comeback and Securing Place in Canadian Championship Final
The Montréal Impact are on the verge of completing a roaring comeback and booking a place in the Canadian Championship Final, when they face Vancouver Whitecaps FC at BC Place on Wednesday evening (9:30 p.m. ET; TSN 1 / TVA Sports).
 
The Impact moved to within a win of earning the Canadian Championship Final slot that goes to the team with the best record over the nine matches between Major League Soccer's Canadian clubs to kick off the continuation of play in the 2020 season, following their 4-2 win against the Whitecaps on Sunday evening at BC Place.
 
With the victory, the Impact have nine points from their five matches thus far – three points, or one victory, behind Toronto FC. The Impact are one goal behind on goal differential – meaning a win while scoring two or more goals vs. Vancouver this week moves them ahead on the first tiebreakers (first goal differential, then goals scored). But even with a 1-0 Montréal win – which would leave the Impact and Toronto FC level on wins (4), goal difference (+4) and goals scored (9) – the Impact will still advance with a better goal differential in away games, where they already hold the advantage following a 1-0 win at Toronto on Sept. 1 before the win in Vancouver.
 
Should Whitecaps FC win, or if Wednesday's match ends in a tie, Toronto FC will claim the spot in Canadian Championship Final, which will be a single-match final against the winner of the Canadian Premier League’s Island Games, with the date and location to be announced later.
 
 
W
L
T
PTS
GF
GA
GD
AwayGD
Toronto FC
4
2
0
12
9
5
+4
+1
Montreal Impact
3
2
0
9
8
5
+3
+3
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
1
4
0
3
5
12
-7
-6
 
 
Homegrown Americans and South American Stars Battle for Golden Boot Lead
The race for the 2020 MLS Golden Boot presented by Audi is heating up as a trio of Americans and a trio of South American stars lead the pack for the prestigious award at the halfway mark of the season. Los Angeles Football Club 22-year-old Uruguayan star Diego Rossi currently leads all players with 10 goals scored this season, continuing his goalscoring momentum after capturing the MLS is Back Tournament Golden Boot presented by Audi last month.
 
Hot on Rossi’s heels is Columbus Crew SC and U.S. Men’s National Team forward Gyasi Zardes with eight goals scored. The LA Galaxy academy product has scored three goals in his last two appearances. Sounders FC homegrown forward Jordan Morris is also in the midst of the Golden Boot race as the 25-year-old U.S. Men’s National Team Star has six goals scored this season. Rounding out the young Americans is Orlando City SC 24-year-old midfielder Chris Mueller who is also tied for fourth with six goals scored.
 
Among the South Americans shining is Seattle and Peru National Team forward Raúl Ruidíaz who ranks third in the Golden Boot race with seven goals scored, most recently tallying two goals in the club’s most recent match. Also among the top six goalscorers this season is LA Galaxy and Argentina National Team midfielder Cristian Pavon. The 24-year-old FIFA World Cup veteran has six goals on the season and has registered a score in five of the Galaxy’s seven most recent matches.  
 
Rossi, Zardes and Mueller each have 12 matches remaining this season, while Morris, Ruidíaz and Pavon have 13 matches left in the regular season to climb the Golden Boot standings.
 
 
Which Teams are in Top Form at the Midpoint?
This Wednesday marks a defining moment in the 2020 MLS regular season, as the run of form reveals some spectacular recoveries and new-found consistencies at the halfway point.
 
In the Eastern Conference, the No. 2-ranked Philadelphia Union (6-2-3) are commanding a lot of attention with only one loss in the last 10 games. Forward Kacper Przybylko is leading the club with four goals and an assist over his last five appearances, and the talents of young U.S. international Brenden Aaronson include a tally of three additional goals and two assists on the season.
 
Orlando City SC (5-2-4) is sitting pretty in fourth place as the top-scoring team in the Eastern Conference with 19 goals. The Lions are in the midst of a five-game unbeaten streak, with only one loss in their last nine matches, and midfielder Chris Mueller is leading the club with his six goals ranking among the top-five scorers in the league. 
 
New York City FC (5-5-1), ranked No. 6 in conference standings, experienced a rapid role reversal during a five-game unbeaten streak to clean up their stagnant start to the season, which tied for the worst opening record of 2020 with a 1-5 start.
 
In the Western Conference, the fifth-place LA Galaxy (4-3-3) drastically changed course after a winless first five games. The Galaxy’s complete turnaround comes as a result of their last five straight games without a loss, as they remain the only club to go unbeaten since the continuation of play following the MLS is Back Tournament.
 
 
Continental Tire and Major League Soccer Continue to #KickChildhoodCancer During the Month of September
As part of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, MLS WORKS – Major League Soccer’s social responsibility platform – has teamed up with League partner Continental Tire to raise awareness and funds for childhood cancer. Now in its seventh year, the Kick Childhood Cancer campaign strives to strengthen research efforts to find cures for all types of childhood cancer and provide support to one of the most vulnerable populations affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Fans are encouraged to tweet messages of hope to inspire patients during their fight. Continental Tire will donate $25 to Children’s Oncology Group for pediatric cancer research for all messages that use the #KickChildhoodCancer hashtag.

Supported locally by all 26 MLS clubs, the 2020 Campaign is focused on raising funds for pediatric cancer research, while providing comfort and inspiration to patients and their families. Here are a few ways our clubs have supported this year’s campaign:
 
Major League Soccer Reveals EA SPORTS FIFA 21 Player Ratings
On Wednesday, Major League Soccer will host the first of its kind EA SPORTS Ratings Reveal for MLS players. Fans are encouraged to tune into the livestream on Twitch or Twitter at 3 p.m. ET. Hosted by MLS and eMLS talent Aaron West, Susannah Collins and former eMLS standout for the New York Red Bulls, Mike LaBelle, the event will reveal ratings to MLS fans while capturing real-time reactions of the top-rated MLS players. View all FIFA 21 Ratings here.
 
 
MLS Media Availability and Press Conference Calendar
Clubs across MLS continue to offer enhanced media access to players and coaches via video press conferences. Throughout the season, clubs will host match preview press conferences two days before their respective matches. Each club will also host live, virtual postgame press conferences from the stadium immediately following their matches.

A full schedule of media availabilities and press conferences can be found on the MLS Media Resources site by clicking HERE.
 
 
MLS Regular Season: Week 12 Game Notes
Wednesday, September 16
FC Dallas vs. Colorado Rapids, 8:30 p.m.
  • FC Dallas won a second consecutive home game, defeating the Houston Dynamo 2-1 at Toyota Stadium on Saturday evening. Andres Ricuarte celebrated his first MLS start with a stunning long-range strike, before Franco Jara scored his second league goal for the game-winner.
  • The Rapids ended a seven-game winless run and claimed the Rocky Mountain Cup in stunning fashion, defeating Real Salt Lake 5-0 at Rio Tinto Stadium on Saturday evening. It was the largest margin of victory in the club’s 25 seasons and Colorado’s first win in the series since 2017. Diego Rubio scored two goals in the opening 10 minutes and added an assist.
  • The teams met a year ago, each winning on their home ground. Ryan Hollingshead netted the game-winner eight minutes from time, leading FC Dallas to a 2-1 win on March 23 at Toyota Stadium; the Rapids then returned the favor with a 3-0 win Sept. 29 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
  • FC Dallas have now won the last three meetings at Toyota Stadium, ending a three-game winless streak in the series in Frisco. The Rapids’ last win there came in 2016.
  • The Rapids have won the last two meetings in Commerce City, their first home wins in the series since 2013, a five-game home winless run; the teams had reached four consecutive 1-1 draws there.
 
Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs. Montreal Impact, 9:30 p.m. (TSN / TVA Sports)
  • The teams are meeting in the second of a pair of matches over four days’ time, both at BC Place. Orji Okwonkwo and Saphir Taïder each tallied a goal and an assist as the Impact took a 4-2 victory on Sunday evening.
  • The teams met once earlier this season. Romell Quioto and Lassi Lappalainen each scored in the first half as the Impact took a 2-0 win Aug. 25 at Stade Saputo.
  • The Impact won the lone league meeting between the teams a year ago, a 2-1 win Aug. 28 at Stade Saputo, ending a two-game Whitecaps FC winning streak in the league series, which included a 2-1 ‘Caps win March 4, 2018 in the last meeting at BC Place.
  • The teams have met four times in the Canadian Championship, including each of the past two years, both times in the semifinals. Whitecaps FC took last year’s series 2-1 on aggregate, winning 2-0 at BC Place a week after the Impact won 1-0 at Stade Saputo.
 
San Jose Earthquakes vs. Portland Timbers, 9:30 p.m. (FS1)
  • The Earthquakes returned home and gained a second draw in three games, reaching a scoreless decision with the LA Galaxy at Earthquakes Stadium on Sunday evening.
  • The Timbers weren’t able to build upon a first win in five matches, dropping a 4-2 decision to Los Angeles Football Club at Banc of California Stadium on Sunday evening. Eryk Williamson scored for a second consecutive game.
  • The teams met twice a season ago, each winning on their home ground. The Quakes took a 3-0 win on April 6 at Earthquakes Stadium; the Timbers claimed a 3-1 win on Decision Day (Oct. 6) at Providence Park which secured a place in the MLS Cup Playoffs.
  • The Timbers have never lost to the Quakes at home in their MLS history. The Timbers have won nine of 12 meetings between the teams in Portland (with three draws), including the past seven meetings there. The away team has won just twice in the all-time league series, last a Timbers win May 5, 2018, in San Jose.
 
Friday, Sept. 18
Seattle Sounders FC vs. Los Angeles Football Club, 10 p.m.
  • Sounders FC became the ninth team in MLS history to score at least seven goals in a game, rolling to a 7-1 against the San Jose Earthquakes on Sept. 10 at CenturyLink Field. The Sounders scored five goals in the opening 33 minutes of the game, the fastest five goals from the start of a match in MLS history, tying the record for most goals in the first half in league annals.
  • Raúl Ruidíaz, Joevin Jones and Jordan Morris all played a part in four goals each, Ruidiaz and Jones with two goals and two assists each, while Morris had three assists with a goal.
  • LAFC put an end to a two-game losing slide in convincing fashion, claiming a 4-2 win against the Portland Timbers at Banc of California Stadium. Diego Rossi scored his MLS Golden Boot-leading 10th goal of the season, while Bradley Wright-Phillips netted the 113th goal of MLS league career, now one behind Ante Razov for No.6 on all-time goalscorers list.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season in league play. Jordan Morris scored a pair of goals as Sounders FC took a 3-1 on Aug. 30 at CenturyLink Field, their first win in five meetings with LAFC all-time in league play.
  • The teams also met in the round-of-16 in the MLS is Back Tournament, and Los Angeles Football Club gained a measure of redemption with a 4-1 win, as Diego Rossi netted a pair of goals and Brian Rodríguez added a goal and an assist.
  • The teams met in the MLS Cup Playoffs last year. Raúl Ruidíaz scored a pair of goals, and Nicolas Lodeiro scored a goal and set up the other two, and Sounders FC claimed a remarkable 3-1 win on Oct. 29 at Banc of California Stadium in the Western Conference Final.
 
Saturday, Sept. 19
Sporting Kansas City vs. FC Dallas, 3:30 p.m. (Univision / TUDN)
  • Sporting put paid to a four-game winless slide, defeating Minnesota United FC by the game’s only goal at Children’s Mercy Park on Sunday evening. Johnny Russell netted the game-winner 10 minutes from the end.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Franco Jara gave FCD an early lead, but Khiry Shelton equalized just before halftime, leaving the teams in a 1-1 draw Sept. 2 at Children’s Mercy Park.
  • FCD has come away with points from the last three meetings in Kansas City, winning the previous two, the club’s first wins there since 2011. SKC had won five of the seven meetings in between, with two draws.
  • Sporting last won at Toyota Stadium on Oct. 21, 2018, a 3-0 win, their first in Frisco since 2011; FC Dallas had a five-game home undefeated streak in the series put to an end.
 
New England Revolution vs. New York City FC, 4:30 p.m.
  • The Revolution weren’t able to make it back-to-back wins, dropping a 2-1 decision to the Philadelphia Union at Subaru Park on Saturday evening. Tajon Buchanan netted the first goal of his MLS career for the New England tally.
  • NYCFC extended their undefeated streak to five games with a fourth win in that span, defeating FC Cincinnati 2-1 at Red Bull Arena on Saturday evening. Alexander Ring netted a third goal in the last five games, and Anton Tinnerholm scored his second in the last four.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time this season. An own goal and a Héber tally in the second half gave NYCFC the 2-0 win on Sept. 2 at Gillette Stadium.
  • The NYCFC win in the first meeting this year ended a four-game undefeated streak for the Revs in the series in Foxborough; NYCFC has won four of the seven meetings all-time in the Bronx. NYCFC’s 2-1 win in the first meeting last year, Sept. 7 at Yankee Stadium, ended a three-game Revolution undefeated streak in the series.
 
Atlanta United vs. Inter Miami CF, 7 p.m.
  • Atlanta United completed a three-game road swing with a 4-2 loss to Nashville SC at Nissan Stadium on Saturday evening. Jeff Larentowicz scored his first goal since the 2018 season, while 18-year-old George Bello scored his second career MLS goal.
  • Inter Miami weren’t able to make a third win in their inaugural campaign, dropping a 2-1 decision to Orlando City SC at Exploria Stadium on Saturday evening. Brek Shea scored his first goal for the club.
  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season, the first matches in their club histories. Lewis Morgan scored both goals for Inter Miami, leading the club to a 2-1 win on Sept. 9 in Fort Lauderdale; the teams reached a goalless draw at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sept. 2.
 
New York Red Bulls vs. FC Cincinnati, 7 p.m.
  • The Red Bulls snapped a four-game winless slide, defeating D.C. United 2-0 at Audi Field on Saturday evening. Kaku set up both goals, his fourth career two-assist game, from Aaron Long and Daniel Royer.
  • FC Cincinnati saw their winless slide extended, falling 2-1 to New York City FC at Red Bull Arena on Saturday evening. Brandon Vasquez netted the FCC goal, snapping the club’s scoreless streak at 558 minutes, the fourth-longest in MLS history.
  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season. Yuya Kubo sent FCC on their way to a 2-0 win with a first-half goal as the clubs met in group play in the MLS is Back Tournament on July 22. The teams met in the season opener, and the Red Bulls claimed a 3-2 win at Red Bull Arena on Feb. 29.
  • The teams met twice in FCC’s inaugural season, and the Red Bulls won both without conceding a goal. Connor Lade netted the only goal of the game as the Red Bulls won April 27 at Red Bull Arena; Kaku and Omir Fernandez scored late goals as they claimed a 2-0 win May 25 at Nippert Stadium.
 
Columbus Crew SC vs. Nashville SC, 7:30 p.m.
  • Columbus Crew SC conceded a pair of goals for the first time this season, but still came away with a point in a 2-2 draw with Chicago Fire FC at Soldier Field. Crew SC had conceded two goals through the club’s opening 10 games, matching the fewest in MLS history.
  • Nashville SC extended their undefeated streak to four games with a second win in that time, defeating Atlanta United 4-2 at Nissan Stadium on Saturday evening. Dominique Badji netted the opener in the first minute, while Dax McCarty played a part in all four goals – one goal, three assists – the most combined goals and assists in his 371 career MLS league appearances.
  • The teams are meeting for the first time in their histories.
 
D.C. United vs. Toronto FC, 7:30 p.m. (TSN)
  • D.C. United had their brief two-game undefeated run put to an end, falling 2-0 to the New York Red Bulls at Audi Field on Saturday evening.
  • TFC return to action after putting an end to a brief two-game losing slide last time out, defeating the Montréal Impact 2-1 at Stade Saputo on Sept. 9. Pablo Piatti netted his third goal of the season, while Jozy Altidore scored his first in league play in 2020.
  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season. TFC’s Ayo Akinola netted a brace before halftime, but Federico Higuaín and Frederic Brillant scored late goals to pull D.C. United, leaving the teams in a 2-2 draw in a fractious encounter on July 21 in group play at the MLS is Back Tournament.
  • The teams met twice a season ago, reaching a pair of draws. In the opening encounter May 15 at BMO Field, TFC took 36 total attempts toward goal – tied for the second-most in a single game in MLS history, and the most ever from a team without scoring a goal – in a goalless draw. They then played to a 1-1 draw June 29 at Audi Field.
  • The teams also met in the MLS Cup Playoffs last year – Toronto FC claiming a 5-1 win in extra time in the Round One match Oct. 19 at BMO Field. The game was knotted 1-1 after 90 minutes; the four goals in extra time were an all-time MLS record, both for a single game and for one team.
 
Orlando City SC vs. Chicago Fire FC, 7:30 p.m.
  • Orlando City SC won for a third time in extending their undefeated streak to five games, defeating Inter Miami CF 2-1 at Exploria Stadium on Saturday evening. Mauricio Pereyra scored his second goal of the season for the match-winner.
  • Fire FC gained a third result in the last five games, reaching a 2-2 draw with Columbus Crew SC at Soldier Field on Saturday afternoon. Djordje Mihailovic and Robert Berić netted goals in the opening 14 minutes, the Fire scoring as many goals in that time as the Crew had allowed all season.
  • The teams met twice a season ago. Przemyslaw Frankowski scored a pair of goals as the Fire cruised to a 5-2 win on Decision Day (Oct. 6) at Exploria Stadium; on March 9 at SeatGeek Stadium, Dom Dwyer gave Orlando City the lead early in the second half, but CJ Sapong netted the leveler in stoppage time, leaving the teams in a 1-1 draw.
  • The Fire now have a eight-game undefeated streak in the series, over the past four seasons. Orlando City’s last win vs. Chicago came Sept. 19, 2015, a 1-0 win at Bridgeview, Ill.; the Fire have won four meetings since, with four draws.
 
Houston Dynamo vs. Minnesota United FC, 8 p.m.
  • The Dynamo saw their four-game undefeated run come to an end, falling 2-1 to FC Dallas at Toyota Stadium on Saturday evening. Memo Rodríguez scored directly from a free kick, the first of his MLS career, the second by a Dynamo player this season (also: Darwin Quintero, July 23 vs LA Galaxy).
  • Minnesota United FC saw their two-game winning run put to an end, falling by the game’s only goal to Sporting Kansas City on Sunday evening.
  • The teams are meeting for the third time this season. Darwin Quintero scored against his former club and Ariel Lassiter hit for his first two Dynamo goals, in a 3-0 win Sept. 2 at BBVA Stadium.
  • The teams met twice a season ago, each winning on their home ground. Romain Métanire scored the game’s only goal as Minnesota United took the victory on May 25 at Allianz Field; Mauro Manotas and Christian Ramírez netted goals as the Dynamo won 2-0 on Sept. 11 at BBVA Stadium.
  • The home team has won each of the past six meetings in the series, and the visiting team has yet to win. The teams split their two league meetings in 2018. Minnesota United took a come-from-behind 2-1 win on April 28 at TCF Bank Stadium, their first victory vs. the Dynamo. Then, the Dynamo captured a 3-0 victory July 7 at BBVA Stadium.
 
Real Salt Lake vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC, 9:30 p.m. (TSN)
  • Real Salt Lake saw their long undefeated streak against Rocky Mountain rivals Colorado Rapids come to an end, falling 5-0 at Rio Tinto Stadium on Saturday evening.
  • Real Salt Lake won both meetings a season ago. Albert Rusnák converted a penalty kick for the game’s lone goal after 21 minutes, giving Real the win March 9 at Rio Tinto Stadium, then Damir Kreilach scored the game’s only goal for the RSL win on Decision Day (Oct. 6) at BC Place.
  • RSL has won the past four meetings at Rio Tinto Stadium. The RSL win in the second meeting last year ended a six-game winning streak for the ‘Caps at BC Place, dating back to 2014.
 
LA Galaxy vs. Colorado Rapids, 10:30 p.m.
  • The Galaxy extended their undefeated streak to six games, reaching a goalless draw with the San Jose Earthquakes at Earthquakes Stadium on Sunday evening. David Bingham was credited with two saves, recording a second consecutive shutout and his third of the season.
  • The Rapids won both meetings between the teams a season ago. Andre Shinyashiki netted the game’s only goal in the 82nd minute as the Rapids took the victory on May 19 at Dignity Health Sports Park, then Nicolás Mezquida and Cole Bassett scored six minutes apart late as the Rapids took the 2-0 win Sept. 11 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
  • The Rapids have come away with points in the last four meetings between the teams, with three victories. The Rapids’ victory in the first meeting in 2018, a 2-1 win on Aug. 4 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, snapped a four-game winless streak, and two-game losing streak, in league play in the series, their first vs. the Galaxy since March 12, 2016.
  • The Rapids win in the first meeting last year snapped a six-game Galaxy undefeated streak in Carson, Calif., in the series, with two wins and four draws over the span, their first win there since Sept. 7, 2013, a 1-0 victory.
 
San Jose Earthquakes vs. Portland Timbers, 10:30 p.m.
  • The teams are meeting for the second time in four days, after playing Sept. 16 at Earthquakes Stadium.
 
Sunday, Sept. 20
Montreal Impact vs. Philadelphia Union, 7:30 p.m. (TVA Sports)
  • The Union won for a second consecutive game and a fourth time in five matches, defeating the New England Revolution 2-1 at Subaru Park on Saturday evening. Anthony Fontana scored both Union goals, over the last 17 minutes, now with four goals in 20 career league appearances.
  • Each team won at home by a big margin in their two meetings a season ago. The teams are meeting for the second time this season. Cory Burke, Haris Medunjanin and Alejandro Bedoya all netted goals as the Union claimed a 3-0 win on April 30 in Chester; Lassi Lappalainen and Orji Okwonkwo each netted a brace as the Impact took a 4-0 win July 27 at Stade Saputo.
  • Each team won away from home in 2018, the Union taking a 2-0 win May 12 in Montréal, and the Impact claiming a 4-1 victory Sept. 15 in Chester.

 

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