The Impact visits the Islanders Sunday in Puerto Rico
The Impact will try to rebound after losing 2-1 against the Atlanta Silverbacks, last Wednesday, in Georgia.
“This game will be a final for us, with a “do or die” feeling,” said Impact head coach Marc Dos Santos. “We want to be intelligent in our approach and manage the 90 minutes of play to have a good chance of winning the game. We need to play the same way we did in the second leg of the Canadian championship in Vancouver.”
“It will be another important game for us,” said midfielder Leonardo Di Lorenzo. “We didn’t play well in Atlanta, and we now need to really show what we can do. We had a good training session here in Puerto Rico, in very hot weather, and we are ready to get the three points. We need to play better on the road.”
It will be the first of four matchups between both teams in 2011. The Impact has a winning record of 11 wins, four losses and four ties (21GF-11GA) in 19 games against the Puerto Rico franchise, since 2004.
The Puerto Rico Islanders are currently fourth in the NASL standings with a record of three wins, three losses and two ties in nine games for a total of 11 points in eight games. The Islanders have lost three of their last four games after winning four of their first five games of the regular season.
In its last regular season game, the Islanders lost 3-2 against the RailHawks, Saturday in Cary. The club is still undefeated at home with a record of one win and two ties in three games.
After suffering a calf injury against Atlanta, forward Reda Agourram will be available for the game, while the situation of midfielder Anthony Le Gall is still to be determined. His situation will be evaluated prior to Sunday’s game.
Midfielder Antonio Ribeiro will serve an automatic one-game suspension in Puerto Rico after being ejected from the game at the 89th minute in Atlanta for receiving a second yellow card in the game.
Striker Ali Gerba is currently with the Canadian National Team for the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup. After losing 2-0 against the USA on Tuesday, Canada won 1-0 versus Guadeloupe Saturday, at Raymond James Stadium.
Gerba started the game. He got a scoring chance in the 33rd minute and drew a penalty kick for Canada (Dwayne De Rosario scored). He was then replaced by Rob Friend at the 64th minute.
The team will play its next home game at Saputo Stadium against the Fort Lauderdale Strikers, on June 18, at 2:30pm (Radio-Canada, CKAC Sports, THE TEAM 990, radio-canada.ca/sports). Tickets for this game are still available through Admission Network (admission.com / 514-790-1245) or at Saputo Stadium’s ticketing office.
• Impact goalkeeper Bill Gaudette played three seasons with the Islanders between 2008 and 2010. He started 80 regular season games and registered 38 wins and 26 shutouts while winning the 2010 North American second division playoff championship.
• Montreal has a record of five wins, two losses and two ties in Bayamon.
• The Impact is on a two-game winning streak against the Islanders, having won both games in 2010.
• Puerto Rico won its second CFU Club Championship (Caribbean) in team history on May 27 and will participate to its third consecutive CONCACAF Champions League in 2011-2012. The Islanders will face Salvadorian club Isidro Metapan in the preliminary round.
THREE NEXT GAMES
• Saturday, June 18–Fort Lauderdale Strikers @ IMPACT – Saputo Stadium – 2:30 (Radio-Canada, CKAC Sports, THE TEAM 990, radio-canada.ca/sports)
• Sunday, June 26 – IMPACT @ FC Edmonton – Foote Field – 4:05pm (fcedmonton.com)
• Wednesday, June 29 – Puerto Rico Islanders @ IMPACT – Saputo Stadium – 7:30pm (CKAC Sports, THE TEAM 990, radio-canada.ca/sports)