Painting the Picture against NYCFC

Citizens on a bad spell visit Stade Saputo this Saturday

No other team in MLS has a bigger advantage at home than NYCFC, given the smallness of the field in its Yankee Stadium fortress. Conversely, adapting to a field like Stade Saputo’s, one of the biggest in MLS, certainly comes into play for Domè Torrent and his men; that, and the electric atmosphere that will reign near the Montreal Tower for this sold out game, Saturday at 7:30pm (TVA Sports). 

If the Impact’s play has improved over the past few games, it’s the opposite for the Citizens. The New York team has managed just one win in its last eight games, scoring more than one goal just twice in that stretch. That doesn’t mean NYCFC should be underestimated, far from it. Their blistering attack, dangerous players, and the rest that David Villa and his teammates took advantage of could put the Bleu-blanc-noir in trouble. Here are the three keys to the game. 

  1. David Villa’s contributions

Is El Guaje becoming too selfish? In his last two games, the Spaniard tried 18 shots, but only four were on target. It’s natural for a striker of his stature to want to shoot whenever an opportunity presents itself, but in this context, it is possible that Villa is trying to do too much. Still, Montreal will have to be wary of Villa, whether he’s making a run or preparing to shoot.

  1. The Taïder-Silva-Piatti connection

The Bleu-blanc-noir’s inseparable offensive players must have another good game against NYCFC if the Impact hopes to gain all three points. Saphir Taïder has taken at least one shot in 23 consecutive games; Ale Silva is already on 10 assists, which would’ve been a club record in MLS, if it wasn’t for Nacho Piatti’s 12 helpers this season; the Argentine, on his end, seems to have added an extra dimension to his game with his collective play. When the 8-9-10 trio goes to work, everything works.

  1. Montreal’s mentality

The best example of your renewed Impact was illustrated in Philadelphia last week. Trailing 1-0 because of a set piece, the Bleu-blanc-noir came back and won, while earlier in the season, that type of goal would’ve been a big hit to Montreal’s momentum. Confidence is at a peak for Rémi Garde’s men; will that translate to victory this Saturday?