Impact emerges victorious in first MLS game

Urruti chip makes the difference in 80th minute

First MLS game, first win for the Montreal Impact. And might I add, it was done in stunning fashion.

A first look at Montreal’s formation tonight and you’d assume it was a defensive one, with head coach Thierry Henry naming five defenders in the line-up. But counting the full-backs as defenders only would be a mistake; although their main role remained defensive, they brought an extra element to Montreal’s attack from the wings.

Basically, when the Impact defended, it was a five-man backline, but when the team moved forward, the backline transformed into a three-man unit.

In the first few minutes, we saw right-back Zachary Brault-Guillard make his way forward and link up with Maxi Urruti multiple times, creating dangerous scenarios for New England’s back four. This continued throughout the game and on both sides, with Jorge Corrales occupying the left side.

However, it was the visitors who opened the scoring against the run of play, with Teal Bunbury getting on the end of a corner and finding the back of the net with a powerful one-timer that gave goalkeeper Clément Diop no chance.

Fortunately, Montreal’s domination in the first half paid off, and they were able to answer off a corner as well through Romell Quioto, helped by Joel Waterman winning his header at the near post. The Honduran already nets his second Impact goal, and his first in MLS play.

Montreal kept up the pressure in the second half, although both teams tightened up at that point, not wanting to give anything away in the game’s dying moments. It was going to take something special to find a breakthrough, and that something came in the 80th minute.

The Impact will now head to Texas for its first MLS road game of the season, next Saturday at 3pm against FC Dallas, before returning home and shifting its focus back to the Concacaf Champions League. Montreal hosts Honduran club CD Olimpia for the first leg of the quarterfinals on Tuesday, March 10, at Olympic Stadium (TICKETS), before heading to Honduras for the second leg on March 17.