MONTREAL, Quebec – The Montreal Impact beat the Seattle Sounders by a score of 4-1, Saturday night, in its opening game at the revamped Stade Saputo. Felipe (18th minute), Justin Mapp (51st), Andrew Wenger (58th) and Lamar Neagle (87th) scored, while Patrice Bernier tallied three assists for the home team in its first match following a three-week break in regular season action.
Midfielder Felipe scored the Impact’s historic first ever goal at the new stadium in the 18th minute. Quebec midfielder Patrice Bernier recovered a long cross down the left flank, beat the Seattle defender with a move to the inside, and laid the ball off to Felipe, who curled a low shot, far post, from just inside the box.
The Impact then doubled its lead in the 51st minute when midfielder Justin Mapp, dribbling the ball down the left flank, cut towards the centre of the field, beating two Sounders defenders. His low, right footed shot going opposite post beat the keeper from just about the 18-yard line, bringing his all-time career mark to 20 goals.
Forward Andrew Wenger, making his first home start of the season, scored the Impact’s third goal and third of the season when Bernier played him a ball down the right side just inside the box in the 58th minute. Wenger turned and shot from a tough angle, beating the Sounders goalkeeper Bryan Meredith with a right footed blast, short side.
In the 61st minute, forward Fredy Montero played a through ball to forward Eddie Johnson, who broke in all alone and chipped the ball over a charging Ricketts.
Neagle then scored the insurance goal against his former team in the 88th minute when he recovered a ball in the box, and beat the keeper to his right with a hard low shot.
WATCH: Postgame comments
The Impact played up a man after Seattle’s Jhon Kennedy Hurtado was shown a red card in the 56th minute following a dangerous tackle on Collen Warner.
With the win, the Impact broke the Sounders unbeaten streak on the road this season, with a record of 2-0-3 before tonight’s game.
“When we got the lead, it felt like we would have to get another as Seattle was pushing and they have a lot of talented players,” said Impact head coach Jesse Marsch. “I still think we are learning to manage the game when we are up a man. It takes a lot of hard work and we did that tonight. Seattle is a good team, so it wasn’t an easy first game. But I think that was the way you open a new stadium. We had a lot of good performances tonight.”
“When they got a red card, we had to refocus,” said Impact defender Jeb Brovsky. “When they got their goal, we needed to refocus again because we wanted to finish strong and not lose the lead. We did a great job of coming together on the field; the subs came on and were fantastic.”
“We were very excited for the game and our first goal gave us some energy,” said Bernier. “A win like this is great in our new home and the atmosphere was fantastic. It was a special feeling. We can’t ask for anything more than scoring four goals at home in a win.”
The Impact will fly out to Los Angeles on Monday, to prepare for its next match versus Chivas USA on Wednesday, at 10:30 pm (ET), at the Home Depot Center. The Impact will then return to Stade Saputo, on Saturday, June 23, to host Brian Ching, Andre Hainault, and the Houston Dynamo. New 12-game season ticket packages for all matches at Stade Saputo are available via impactmontreal.com, or by calling 514-328-3668.
MTL: GK - Donovan Ricketts; D - Jeb Brovsky, Matteo Ferrari (Shavar Thomas 33’), Nelson Rivas, Zarek Valentin; M – Davy Arnaud, Felipe, Patrice Bernier (Bernardo Corradi 77’), Collen Warner, Justin Mapp (Lamar Neagle 62’), F – Andrew Wenger
Subs not used: GK – Evan Bush; D – Tyson Wahl; M - Sinisa Ubiparipovic; F - Sanna Nyassi
SEA: GK – Bryan Meredith; D – Zach Scott, Jeff Parke, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Marc Burch; M – Mauro Rosales (Cordell Cato 71’), Andy Rose, Brad Evans, Alvaro Fernandez (Alex Caskey 62’); F – Fredy Montero, Eddie Johnson (Servando Carrasco 82’)
Subs not used: GK – Andrew Weber; M – Mike Seamon; F – Roger Levesque, Sammy Ochoa
MTL – Felipe (Bernier) 18’
MTL - Mapp (Bernier) 52’
MTL - Wenger (Bernier) 58’
MTL - Neagle 87’
SEA – Johnson 61’
SEA – Parke 22’
SEA – Johnson 70’
SEA – Montero 76’
MTL – Thomas 79’
MTL – Rivas 85’
SEA – Hurtado 56’