Calum Mallace scores a free kick in the third minute
OTTAWA, Ontario – The Montreal Impact shut out the Ottawa Fury FC 1-0 in a friendly game played on Wednesday at TD Place, in Ottawa. Midfielder Calum Mallace scored the game-winning goal on a free kick in the third minute.
“Tonight was an important game for a lot of players,” said Impact head coach Mauro Biello. “Some had the opportunity to get minutes, and it was important to work on our rhythm and on our confidence. We also saw some others come back from injury. There are a lot of positives to take out of this game. I think the players reacted well. They put in the work and were focused.”
Impact scores quickly
The Bleu-blanc-noir hit the ground running right from the start. Daniel Lovitz, on the left flank, combined well with Michael Salazar and cut inside. The left-back was fouled right outside the box and Mallace, captain on the night, cleanly took the resulting free kick, dispatching it in David Paulmin’s goal, to his right.
The Impact took advantage of the low block proposed by Paul Dalglish’s team to impose its style and stay patient in the build-up. The hosts still had some scoring opportunities, notably through Andrae Campbell, stopped by goalkeeper Eric Kronberg.
Montreal came close to add to its lead at the end of the half. Louis Béland-Goyette moved the ball up field for Shamit Shome, in space in the inside left channel. He turned, ran and passed it in Nick DePuy’s run. The forward took a touch and took a shot that just missed the frame.
“It was a good, intense game for me,” said midfielder Shamit Shome. “It was great to get my first minutes with the Impact and a big honor to have played with the first team. I feel we dictated the tempo of the game for the most part. We got in good positions to score and to keep the ball as well. We also did well defensively against a very direct team.”
Dictating the pace in the second half
Comfortably in front and controlling the game, the Impact did not have to push too hard after the break. For long periods, the team kept possession of the ball and dictated the pace of the match, limiting Ottawa’s scoring chances to a maximum.
In the 77th minute, the Fury could have come back in the game after a cross from the left by Aron Mkungilwa, but Tucker Hume’s header went straight in James Pantemis’ gloves.
Ballou Tabla had a golden opportunity to double the visitors’ lead 10 minutes from time, when DePuy and himself doubled up on Julian de Guzman, coming out of retirement for this friendly game. The Canadian veteran lost the ball and the young Ivorian winger quickly attacked, but his shot missed the target.
The Impact will return to MLS action on Wednesday, July 19, at 7:30pm, as the Philadelphia Union will visit Stade Saputo in a crucial game for the MLS Cup Playoffs (TVA sports, 985sports.ca, CJAD – TICKETS). Shortly after, it will be FC Dallas’ turn to enter the Bleu-blanc-noir’s ground, on Saturday, July 22, at 7:30pm (TVA Sports, 98,5fm, TSN Radio 690 – TICKETS).
MTL – GK-Eric Kronberg (James Pantemis 46’); D-Chris Duvall (Ballou Tabla 46’), Wandrille Lefèvre, Víctor Cabrera, Daniel Lovitz; M-Shamit Shome, Louis Béland-Goyette (Hernán Bernardello 65’), Calum Mallace; F-Michael Salazar, Nick DePuy, Dominic Oduro (David Choinière 65’)
Unused substitute: Kyle Fisher
OTT – GK-David Paulmin (Andrew MacRae 77’) D-Kyle Venter (Aron Mkungilwa 46’), Thomas Meilleur-Giguère (Ramon Martin Del Campo 46’), Shane McEleney (Jonathan Barden 46’); M-Andrae Campbell, Sergio Manesio (Julian de Guzman 58’), Jamar Dixon (Gerardo Bruna 46’), Eddie Edward (Jimmy-Shammar Sanon 46’); F-Ryan Williams (Azake Luboyera 46’), Steevan Dos Santos (Tucker Hume 46’), Adonijah Reid (Sito 46’)
Unused substitute: none
MTL – Mallace 3’