Preview: Impact hosts New York Red Bulls this Saturday at 4:30pm

Team aiming for a fourth consecutive win at 4:30pm ET

Montreal Impact – New York Red Bulls
Saturday, March 23, 4:30pm (ET)
Olympic Stadium
Broadcast: TVA Sports, CJAD 800
Also available on: illico web, illico mobile, MLS Live

How to buy tickets

By telephone:
Admission Network: 1-855-790-1245 – 9am-8pm, except on game day
Montreal Impact: 514-328-3668 – Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm, except on game day

In person:
Stade Saputo: 9am-9pm, Thursday and Friday only
Olympic Stade: 9am-6pm

Online:
admission.com – Until 11am on the day of the match


MONTREAL – The Montreal Impact and Olympic Park confirmed on Friday that the game against the New York Red Bulls will be played as scheduled this Saturday, at 4:30pm ET (live on TVA Sports and CJAD 800 AM), as weather conditions will be suitable to host an event in the main area of Olympic Stadium.

It is recommended that spectators arrive early; doors open at 2:30pm. It is also recommended to use public transit. Olympic Stadium is accessible from two metro stations, Pie-IX and Viau, as well as via bus 34-125-132-139.

Excellent seats are still available for this game in the 100 and 200 seating levels.

Ready for the next challenge

Preview: Marco Schällibaum

“The Red Bulls have the quality to be a team that can compete for the title,” said Impact head coach Marco Schällibaum. “We know we are in for a tough game. But, we are confident in ourselves after having earned all nine points in our three games and we are ready for this next challenge.”

“We have been very good on the counter attack,” said Patrice Bernier. “But, we need to make sure we don’t give the ball away too often to New York on Saturday. We have to move the ball around quicker and make ourselves more available to the ball carrier when we have possession.”

[With Nesta out] “I’m ready to play on either side of the backline, or in the centre if need be. You put in the hard work in practice to prepare for these scenarios,” said defender Jeb Brovsky. “So, we will be prepared for New York. We know that we will need a 90 plus minute performance against them to be successful and if we get the lead, we will have to continue to put pressure and not sit back too much like we may have done against Toronto.”

Impact news

The team will look to earn its fourth win in a row as it plays its second and final regular season matchup at Olympic Stadium. The Impact is the only team to have three wins so far this season and sits first in MLS with nine points.

For the first time, the team is also ranked first in the league’s Power Rankings. Marco Di Vaio heads the Castrol Weekly Top 20 index, Bernier was named the first star in the Top 3 performers of week and Troy Perkins was given the Save of the Week title.

After beating the Sounders 1-0 in Seattle to open the season on March 2 and besting the Timbers in Portland 2-1 on March 9, the Impact returned to Montreal last Saturday to host its home opener, defeating Canadian rivals Toronto FC 2-1 at Olympic Stadium. Midfielder Patrice Bernier (1G, 2A) scored the opening goal on a PK and forward Marco Di Vaio (1G, 10SH) opened his account with a marker nominated for Goal of the Week honours.

READ: Talking tactics - Quick transition key to scoring goals

Defender Alessandro Nesta has been ruled out of the game as he will miss two weeks of action due to an adductor strain suffered last week versus Toronto FC. Defender Maxim Tissot will also miss the game due to a knee injury.

Forward Sanna Nyassi has scored five career goals against the Red Bulls, including two with the Impact, but will miss the game due to national team duty (Gambia).

Injury Report

OUT: M - Sinisa Ubiparipovic (calf); D - Nelson Rivas (knee), Alessandro Nesta (adductor strain), Maxim Tissot (knee); PROBABLE: M – Justin Mapp (calf)

Head to head

The Impact went 1-2 in three games against the Red Bulls last season, losing the first matchup at Red Bulls Arena 5-2 on March 31. Forward Thierry Henry scored a hat trick in that one. Then, on May 19, the Impact fell 2-1 at Olympic Stadium.  The Impact won the last game, topping New York at Stade Saputo 3-1 in Alessandro Nesta’s debut on July 28.

DOWNLOAD: Game Notes (PDF)

New York Red Bulls news

The Red Bulls are still searching for their first win of 2013, making their home debut with a scoreless draw with D.C. United on Saturday afternoon at Red Bull Arena. The Red Bulls outshot United 24-5 on the day.

Many changes were made following last season. First off, assistant coach Mike Petke replaced Hans Backe as the bench boss for 2013.

Then the Red Bulls traded forward Sebastien Le Toux to Phiadelphia, DP Rafa Marquez was given his walking papers and the league’s second leading scorer in 2012, Kenny Cooper, was shipped off to FC Dallas.

To replace them, New York made a deal with Real Salt Lake to acquire striker Fabian Espindola, who has scored two goals already in 2013, along with defender Jamison Olave.

The team also brought in former Brazilian international Juninho, who helped Olympique Lyonnais win seven consecutive French league titles, and just this week, the club announced the signing of former Paris St-Germain striker Peguy Luyindula, who scored 37 goals over parts of five seasons with PSG, while also winning two titles with Lyon, from 2001 to 2004.

READ: Opponent watch - NYRB have plenty of firepower despite absentees

The Red Bulls also announced Friday that they have signed two-time MLS Cup winning goalkeeper Kevin Hartman.

Forward Thierry Henry will miss the game with a leg injury, while midfielders Tim Cahill (Australia) and defender Roy Miller (Costa Rica) were called for international duty and won’t be available for the game.

Soccer Schools and Reserve League

Prior to the game, the Montreal Impact Soccer Schools will be hosting a training session on the Olympic Stadium pitch. Some 150 kids will be coached from 11am to 12:30pm by qualified members of the Impact Academy’s coaching staff, on the very same pitch that the pros will use just a few hours later. For more information, visit AcademieImpactMontreal.com/ecole.

On Sunday at 10:30am (ET), the Impact will face off against the Red Bulls in Reserve League action, also at Olympic Stadium. The game is open to the public and admission is free.

Next Game

Then Impact will then hit the road to face Sporting Kansas City at Sporting Park, on March 30, at 8:30pm (ET). The game will be broadcast live on TVA Sports.

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