Last weekend, both Montreal Impact Academy teams playing in the Development Academy were hosting FC Boston Bolts teams at Centre Nutrilait, as a prelude to the Impact game against Columbus Crew SC at Stade Saputo.
Quality game for the Impact U18
Before the game, the Impact U18s and FC Boston Bolts U18s were tied in the standings with the exact same record. It certainly did not show in the field, as the Bleu-blanc-noir dictated the pace of the game and won by a convincing 5-1 scoreline.
Midfielder Santiago Gonzalez was the first to find the back of the net after only four minutes of play. Mathieu Choinière followed suit, with his team’s second goal in the first half, after seeing his previous two shots hit the post and the goalkeeper. FC Bolts had just leveled the score on a corner.
The second half was all Impact. Moulay Hamza Kanzi-Belghiti scored on a penalty, making it 3-1. After repeatedly knocking on the door, Protais Mutambala added a brace, including one on a penalty, before the final whistle, making it 5-1.
“It’s well deserved because we worked hard during the entire week,” said midfielder Luca Ricci. “We started the game well and showed the Impact identity. We want to win all of our games before the playoffs.”
The U18s are second of their group with 10 wins, four losses and six draws.
The U16s keep their lead until the end
The Impact U16 also needed the three points in this game to get back in a good position for the playoffs. In a tough game, they won 1-0 on their opponent.
After seeing his big brother score with the U18s earlier, Moulay Abdallah Kanzi-Belghiti added to the family’s pride when he scored the only goal of the game in the 7th minute. He scored on a header from Tristan Resendes’ cross coming from the left flank.
Head coach Nicolas Gagnon’s team held on until the end, despite tough moments, to get the three points – and a clean sheet.
“The game was difficult,” said forward Moulay Abdallah Kanzi-Belghiti. “It was tough to come out from the back and we forced the play a little too much, but we made good deep passes and that was positive.”
The Impact U16 is second of its group with 11 wins, four losses and seven draws.
The Impact teams will have another Development Academy double-header next weekend. They will face Everton FC Westcheste, on Saturday, at 10:30am, in New York, and will have an MLS meeting against the New York Red Bulls, on Sunday, at 11am, in New Jersey.
The first three teams of each group qualify for the playoffs. The next best 11 teams, no matter their group, also make it into the playoffs, for a total of 32 teams taking part in this tournament.