MONTREAL – The Montreal Impact plays its last MLS game until June as the Portland Timbers visit Stade Saputo this Saturday, at 3pm EDT (TICKETS – TVA Sports [pregame show at 2:30pm], 98,5fm [pregame show at 2:30pm], TSN Radio 690 [pregame show at 2:30pm]), a game presented by Stingray. Excellent tickets remain available on impactmontreal.com.
“We know we can perform well, like in the second half last week,” said Impact head coach Mauro Biello. “This is what we aim to do, but for the full 90 minutes. There will be tough moments when we will be disappointed and frustrated, and we need to be strong and work hard to find solutions. We have improved in our last five games compared to the first five of our season, and we must carry on in our next five.”
“Portland has been a very good team this year and they’re very dangerous in the attack,” said defender Chris Duvall. “I think they are one of the better teams out. To get a win against them would be really big for us to build momentum and to show the league we should not be the team at the bottom.”
The Impact recommends that supporters use public transit and get to the stadium early – doors open at 3:30pm. Due to transformation work at the corner of Pie-IX Blvd. and Sherbrooke St., traffic delays may occur in the Olympic Park area, notably on Charlemagne Ave., Rachel St., and Jeanne-d’Arc St.
As always, the MLS Bag Policy will be in effect. All backpacks, camera bags and large tote bags, as well as all bags bigger than 35 cm x 35 cm x 15 cm are prohibited.
Please also note that parking entrances have changed names since last season. Entrance PB is now called P5 (orange), while entrance PA has made way for entrances P1, P2 & P4 (yellow).
A 100th start for Bernier?
If he is on the starting lineup on Saturday, Patrice Bernier will make his 100th start for the Impact in MLS and, with eight minutes on the pitch, would become the second Bleu-blanc-noir player in MLS to play 9,000 minutes in the North American first division. To underline his participation to the living together campaign and for his general contribution to the Québec society, Bernier will be decorated with the Medal of the National Assembly, this Saturday after warmup.
Dominic Oduro, if he is also amongst the starters, would reach the 50 games started mark with the Impact. For his part, left-back Ambroise Oyongo is 10 minutes away from a total of 5,000 spent on the pitch with Montreal. After having missed the last three games, Hassoun Camara trained this week and is only one minute away from becoming the first Impact player to reach 10,000 MLS minutes.
Injured players back on time for Portland
While Designated Player Diego Valeri came back last week, American international midfielder Darlington Nagbe, who recovered from a thigh strain, could return to the fold for the Oregonians. The Timbers sure would be happy to see him back on the field, as they have not won since April 22.
In three games played against the Timbers at Stade Saputo, the Impact holds a record of one win and two losses, with five goals scored and five goals against. Both clubs faced each other five times since 2012, and the points were shared perfectly evenly, with two wins on each side, along with a draw.
The Impact will start a home-and-away series on the West coast, in British Columbia, for the Canadian Championship semifinals against Vancouver Whitecaps FC, on Tuesday, May 23, at 10pm EDT (RDS, 98,5fm, TSN Radio 690), before coming back to Montreal for the second leg at Stade Saputo, on Tuesday, May 30, at 7:30pm EDT (TICKETS – RDS, 98,5fm, TSN Radio 690). Excellent tickets for this game, as well as season tickets, are still available on impactmontreal.com.