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© Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Impact falls 2-0 against FC Dallas in Texas

An early own goal followed by a penalty propel the home team early

FRISCO, Texas – After beating a Texan team at Stade Saputo the previous week, the Montreal Impact fell short in the Lone Star State, losing 2-0 to FC Dallas, Saturday night at Toyota Stadium in the blistering heat. An early own goal from a set-piece and a penalty converted by Mauro Díaz in the first half were enough to sink the Bleu-blanc-noir.

The Bleu-blanc-noir put up a good offensive performance against one of the league’s best defenses, trying 13 shots, seven of those on target, and hitting the post twice, but ultimately lacking that final bit of precision in the final third. 

With Jukka Raitala having been selected by the Finland national team, it was Rudy Camacho making the start in central defense, back from injury and fit for action after two weeks of training. Raitala made the start and played 64 minutes in Finland’s 2-0 win over Belarus, earlier this afternoon. Designated Player Nacho Piatti, suffering from a small injury, accompanied the team, but finally did not partake in the game.

“I don’t think we saw as much of a difference between the two teams as the standings suggest,” said Impact head coach Rémi Garde. “I’m very disappointed for my players. One of our objectives was to keep the spirit we showed last week alive, and the team did that today.”

Unlucky from set pieces

In the fifth minute, from a set piece, Mauro Díaz floated a ball into the Impact’s 18-yard box. Unluckily, the ball was cleared directly onto an Impact player, deflecting behind the goal line. Despite a few Dallas players being clearly offside on the play, the referee and his video assistant judged that they did not affect the action at hand and the goal was allowed.

Montreal tried to answer back quickly. In the 15th minute, intricate passing down the middle allowed Saphir Taïder to find Chris Duvall wide open on the right. He cleverly passed his defender on the touchline, but his cross was blocked.

A minute later, Jeisson Vargas found Ken Krolicki in front of the box. The midfielder was quick to get a shot off, but a diving Jesse Gonzalez made the save.

But Dallas was quick to counter. In the 18th minute, Roland Lamah made his way towards Montreal’s touchline and passed to forward Maximilliano Urruti at the edge of the box, who was lightly clipped by a Montreal defender. Referee Nima Saghafi pointed straight to the spot. Dallas’ number 10 stepped up to take the shot, and slotted it past Bush’s fingertips, the American goalkeeper having guessed the right side and gotten a touch on it.

With seconds left in stoppage time, the Impact earned its best chance of the half. Midfielder Alejandro Silva intercepted the ball and fed it straight to Matteo Mancosu in the middle. One on one against centre-back Matt Hedges, the striker stepped to his right, beating the central defender for speed, but his shot hit the post to Gonzalez’s right, preserving the home side’s two-goal lead.

“It was an unlucky night for us, but we had to do something more to win the game,” said Impact forward Matteo Mancosu. “Being down against a team like Dallas in the first 20 minutes, it’s tough. We tried to come back with something, but it wasn’t enough at the end.”

Opportunities in the second half

The Impact put up a good fight in the second half to try and even the playing field.

Goalkeeper Evan Bush, who ended the game with six saves, kept his team in the game early in the half with a few key saves, stopping Michael Barrios’ shot from in close before turning aside a powerful header from Matt Hedges off a corner.

In the 61st minute, the Impact had its golden opportunity. Taïder received the ball from an attempted clearance at the top of the box and took a one-time shot that rattled the crossbar. Mancosu was first on the rebound and headed the ball into the net, but the striker was judged offside.

In stoppage time, Taider’s cross found Anthony Jackson-Hamel, substituted in at the 71st minute, alone in front of Gonzalez, but his header lacked precision and was caught by the opposing goalkeeper.

“We’re disappointed by the result, but not our effort,” said midfielder Samuel Piette. “We feel like luck wasn’t on our side, but at the same time we need to create it. We have another game in a few days. It’ll be important to build on the good points from today’s game and carry them into the game against Orlando.”

Upcoming games

The Impact will play a second game in five days on Wednesday, June 13 when Orlando City SC visits Stade Saputo for the third of four 25th anniversary commemorative games, this time to highlight local talent (TICKETS – TVA Sports, 98,5fm, TSN Radio 690) before returning the favour to the Floridians on Saturday, June 23 at 7:30pm, at Orlando City Stadium (TVA Sports, 98,5fm, TSN Radio 690).

LINEUPS

MTL – GK-Evan Bush; D-Chris Duvall, Rod Fanni, Rudy Camacho, Daniel Lovitz; M-Samuel Piette, Ken Krolicki (Dominic Oduro 82’), Saphir Taider; F-Jeisson Vargas, Matteo Mancosu (Anthony Jackson-Hamel 71’), Alejandro Silva (Raheem Edwards 66’)

Subs not used – Clément Diop, Marco Donadel, Ignacio Piatti, Michael Salazar

DAL – GK-Jesse Gonzalez; D-Matt Hedges, Reggie Cannon, Reto Ziegler, Ryan Hollingshead; M-Carlos Gruezo (Victor Ulloa 46’), Kellyn Acosta, Roland Lamah (Santiago Mosquera 64’, Tesho Akindele 73’); F-Mauro Díaz, Maximiliano Urruti, Michael Barrios  

Subs not used – Jimmy Maurer, Maynor Figueroa, Jacori Hayes, Paxton Pomykal

GOALS
DAL – OG 5’
DAL – Díaz (PEN) 18’

CAUTIONS
MTL – Duvall 22’
DAL – Gruezo 25’
MTL – Camacho 77’
DAL – Gonzalez 90’+2’
MTL – Lovitz 90’+4’

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