MONTREAL – With over 31,000 tickets sold for the decisive second leg of the Champions League quarterfinal series, the Montreal Impact looks to make history on Tuesday night as it hosts Mexican side Pachuca at 8pm, at Olympic Stadium (TVA Sports, Sportsnet World/ONE, TSN Radio 690).
The team became the first Canadian team to earn a result on Mexican soil in the knockout phase, with a 2-2 draw last Tuesday, while becoming just the fourth MLS club to do so in 13 games played there past the group stage.
Midfielder Dilly Duka became the fifth player in Impact history to record a brace in a CONCACAF Champions League game, after Roberto Brown (vs Olimpia) and Tony Donatelli (vs Joe Public) in 2008, Eduardo Sebrango (vs Santos Laguna) in 2009 and Marco Di Vaio (vs CD FAS) in 2014.
With its two goals scored on the road, the bleu-blanc-noir can qualify for the semifinal series for the very first time in its history with a win, a 1-1 or 0-0 tie, or with a victory in overtime/penalties following a 2-2 draw in regulation.
“They are a team that’s going to press and we want to take advantage of the space that it creates,” explained Impact head coach Frank Klopas. “We have to manage this game and be disciplined. Their wide players create a lot of chances, so we have to limit that and keep playing with confidence. No matter what happens, we have confidence that we can score goals.”
“This is going to be our first game of the year in Montreal and we are pleased that there will be a lot of fans in attendance tomorrow,” said defender Bakary Soumare. “We showed in the first game that we are an ambitious team and with a good result, our supporters got behind us and it makes us very happy.”
Goalkeeper Evan Bush will etch his name in the club’s record books Tuesday night, surpassing Matt Jordan with 10 games played and 10 starts in CONCACAF play. Bush has a record of five wins, two losses, two ties and four shutouts since 2013 and a win against Pachuca will lift him over Jordan for wins with five.
The Impact went 3-0-1 in group play, and in the process, extended its unbeaten streak in the current 2014-15 edition of the tournament (3-0-2), while expanding on its overall home unbeaten streak in Champions League play to seven wins, two draws and eight shutouts.
C.F. Pachuca played Club Tijuana on the road last Friday, falling 3-2 to the Liga MX Primera division leaders after leading 2-1, losing a man to a red card in the second half.
Coming off the bench versus IMFC after returning from injury, Argentine striker Ariel Nahuelpan played the full 90 last weekend in Tijuana.
The 2008 Champions League winners arrived in Montreal on Saturday in preparation for Tuesday’s game, and will then return to Estadio Hidalgo in Pachuca for an important league matchup with third place Club America this Saturday.
Tickets for this great matchup are available via http://marquonslhistoire.com and ticketmaster.ca (1-855-790-1245), as well as at the ticket offices of Stade Saputo and Olympic Stadium.
Stadium gates will open at 6pm. The organization invites fans to arrive early to sing and cheer on the players during the warm-up session, but also to avoid traffic and long lineups around Olympic Park or at the ticket windows, as well as at the main entrance due to security procedures.
Pre-purchased tickets may be picked up on Tuesday at Stade Saputo between 9am-5pm, and then at the Olympic Stadium from 5pm.