Ola Kamara seals the victory for the visitors, Zlatan Ibrahimović ejected in the first half
MONTREAL – The Montreal Impact lost 1-0 to the LA Galaxy, Monday afternoon at Stade Saputo, in the club’s 25th anniversary commemorative game, played in front 20,801 supporters in a sold-out stadium. Ola Kamara scored the goal for the Californians, while Zlatan Ibrahimović was ejected from the game following a video review at the end of the first half.
“We weren’t decisive enough offensively,” said Impact head coach Rémi Garde. “All week, I had issues to deal with, because I didn’t have the entire team to work with. In this game, it was offensively that we weren’t good enough. There were many situations we should’ve exploited better. We weren’t dangerous enough, not aggressive enough to get on the end of our crosses especially. We paid for it in the last 45 minutes.”
Balanced first half
The Bleu-blanc-noir had opportunities to score in the beginning of this game. Nacho Piatti, who started his 100th game with the Impact, was in a position to cause havoc in front of David Bingham’s net in the 9th and 13th minute, but his first shot was stopped, and the Argentine wasn’t able to get control of the ball after a pass from Samuel Piette in the box.
In the 33rd minute, Raheem Edwards beat defender Emrah Klimenta and crossed from a dangerous position, but the ball had too pace and could not be redirected by a Montreal forward.
In the 39th minute, Michael Petrasso and Ibrahimović had an altercation in the Impact’s box. The Bleu-blanc-noir defender accidentally stepped on the Swede’s foot, who subsequently reacted viciously by slapping the Canadian international. The referee Ismail Elfath, after video review, ejected Zlatan from the game.
Opportunities after the break, but no success
After the break, during which five club legends were honoured for their importance in the club’s conquest of three playoff championships, the Impact used the man advantage to install itself regularly in the Galaxy’s final third and create many scoring chances.
As soon as the 48th minute, Ken Krolicki, found in the box by Alejandro Silva, shot to the near post, but Bingham managed to punch the ball away.
Then, in the 54th minute, Piatti dribbled to the left and crossed for Silva, alone on the second post. The Uruguayan’s ensuing volley was stopped by Bingham.
A few second later, Edwards found space in front of the Californians’ box and unleashed a shot with his left. Bingham made himself big once again and made the save.
“We were able to create chances but at the end of the day, we couldn’t finish them,” said midfielder Raheem Edwards. “It’s important to finish our opportunities, the match could’ve gone completely differently. We had so many chances and we didn’t score, whereas they had one and they did. It’s unfortunate.”
Stade Saputo celebrated what they thought was a goal in the 73rd minute, when Piatti sent Anthony Jackson-Hamel in behind the defense, but the forward was offside. Montreal’s number 11 became the homegrown player with the most games played in club history, as he played a 49th game with the Impact.
“It’s frustrating,” said forward Anthony Jackson-Hamel. “It was hard for us to find that opening, that spark that will allow us to score one or more goals. We can’t be content to scoring one goal, and now we can’t even manage that. It’s very frustrating.”
In the 75th minute, the Galaxy took the lead. Off a goal kick, Dave Romney won the aerial battle, just like Emmanuel Boateng did right after, and Ola Kamara was able to pierce Montreal’s defense and get the ball past Bush.
The Impact will play in Minneapolis for the first time in MLS when it faces Minnesota United FC on Saturday, May 26 at 8pm EDT (TVA Sports, TSN, 98,5fm, TSN Radio 690). The Bleu-blanc-noir will then be back home on Saturday, June 2, at 7:30pm for a game against the Houston Dynamo (TICKETS – TVA Sports, 98,5fm, TSN Radio 690).
MTL – G-Evan Bush; D-Michael Petrasso, Marco Donadel, Jukka Raitala, Chris Duvall (Anthony Jackson-Hamel 64’); M-Samuel Piette, Alejandro Silva (Jeisson Vargas 75’), Ken Krolicki, Saphir Taider, Raheem Edwards; A-Ignacio Piatti
Unused subs – Clément Diop, Rudy Camacho, Louis Béland-Goyette, Shamit Shome, Matteo Mancosu
LAG – G-David Bingham; D-Emrah Klimenta, Michael Ciani, Jorgen Skjelvikm Dave Romney; M-Perry Kitchen, Sebastian Lletget (Chris Pontius 64’), Romain Alessandrini (Emmanuel Boateng 64’), Jonathan Dos Santos, Ola Kamara (Tomas Hilliard-Arce 90’+1’); A-Zlatan Ibrahimović
Unused subs – Justin vom Steeg, Daniel Steres, Servando Carrasco, João Pedro
LAG – Kamara (Boateng) 75’
LAG – Lletget 22’
LAG – Kitchen 37’
MTL – Petrasso 41’
MTL – Donadel 68’
MTL – Raitala 71’
LAG – Bingham 87’
LAG – Ibrahimović 41’