MLS Playoffs - Impact finding inspiration on the road
Heading to Houston to kick off its postseason on Thursday, the Montreal Impact knows it will be in tough having to play a knockout game on the road, but it has a few good performances on the road this season that it can draw inspiration from.
Back-to-back wins in Cascadia
The Impact started the 2013 season on the road, in two of the toughest venues to play in all of MLS, Seattle and Portland. The Canadian side surprised many by taking all six points from the two contests, despite having to play in front of almost 40,000 hostile fans in a 1-0 win over the Sounders to open the season before taking a 2-1 victory over the Western Conference’s best regular season team the week after at JELD-WEN field.
Drama in Vancouver
After a scoreless draw at Stade Saputo in the first leg of the Canadian Championship final versus the Whitecaps FC, the Impact went into Vancouver with their backs against the wall on May 29, forced to get a result on the road if it wanted to bring home the Voyageurs Cup. Things got even tougher when Camilo opened the scoring in just the 4th minute.
However, the Impact battled back on two occasions to earn a 2-2 draw and take home the title as Canadian champion for the first time since 2009, on away goals.
Comeback in KC
Finally, the week after winning the Canadian championship title, the Impact travelled to Kansas to take on Sporting Kansas City on June 1. The home side took the lead through a penalty scored by Claudio Bieler on the stroke of halftime.
Despite being outnumbered, the Impact mounted a comeback in the second half off with goals by Sanna Nyassi and Collen Warner six minutes apart. Despite Alessandro Nesta's red card in the74th minute, the Impact were able to hold on for a crucial 2-1 win.
The postseason is a whole different animal, but finding inspiration in sports can be a difference maker when past success can lead to future glories.