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Match preview: Impact hosts Chicago Wednesday night

MONTREAL – The Montreal Impact takes on the Chicago Fire at 8pm EDT this Wednesday, at Stade Saputo, in the second of three home matchups this week, as it continues its push for a playoff spot (RDS, TSN, TSN Radio 690).

The team is currently undefeated in its last four games (2-0-2) and has given up just one goal in three matches.

Some 5,000 tickets still remain to see Designated Player Didier Drogba in action. This matchup was originally scheduled for April 18, but was moved due to the team’s Champions League run. Tickets and parking coupons dated April 18 will be honoured Wednesday.  (TICKETS)

“Chicago is coming into town with a new mentality after a coaching change, so it will be up to us to remain focused in order to get a good result against them,” said Impact head coach Mauro Biello.

Those changes came over the weekend, following the team’s 2-0 loss to the Philadelphia Union. Head Coach Frank Yallop and his two assistants were relieved of their duties, while technical director Brian Bliss will serve as interim head coach.

The Fire, despite its tough season, is blessed with skill and speed up top. Winger David Accam leads the team in scoring with eight goals, while striker Kenney Igboananike is just behind him with seven, but the team will be without goalkeeper Sean Johnson and defender Eric Gehrig, who will miss the rest of the season with injuries.

“Chicago is a team that’s invited us to come forward and then hit us on the counter,” said goalkeeper Evan Bush. “They have dangerous players going forward if you give them time a space, so we will have to be wary of that.”

The Impact is 3-3-4 all-time against the Fire in MLS play, undefeated at home in five matches (2-0-3). Wednesday’s matchup is the third and final meeting of the season between the Fire and Montreal. The Impact fell 3-0 at Toyota Park on May 30 before topping Chicago 4-3 at Stade Saputo on September 5, a game in which Didier Drogba scored a hat trick in his first MLS start. The Impact’s DP is coming off of a goal and an assist in his sides’ 3-0 win over the Revs last Saturday.

 “We are on a final push for the playoffs and we are confident right now,” said defender Hassoun Camara. “If we remain focused like we have been recently and we apply the principles the coach has implemented, we will have success.”

IMFC will be without midfielder Marco Donadel due to his ejection from last Saturday’s match against New England. However, defender Ambroise Oyongo will be available for selection following his one-game suspension served over the weekend.

Following this contest, the team will play its third straight home game in less than eight days this Saturday, versus D.C. United, at 5pm ET at Stade Saputo. Don’t miss out, only a few TICKETS remain!