MLS Preview from The Sports Network|
Saturday, April 7, 2012
(All times Eastern)
Montreal (0-4-1) at Toronto (0-3-0), Noon
Montreal, QC (Sports Network) - The Montreal Impact and Toronto FC will be
meeting for the first time in MLS on Saturday at Olympic Stadium, but the two
sides are quite familiar with one another.
From 2008-2010 the two clubs met six times in the Canadian Championship, with
TFC claiming five wins and one draw.
However, both are in desperate need of a positive result on Saturday, with
Toronto losing all three of its game in league play to start the season, while
Montreal owns just one point from its first five.
A 5-2 loss at Red Bull New York last weekend was followed by a 1-0 defeat
against Real Salt Lake on Wednesday, with the lone goal coming from the
penalty spot for RSL.
It was the third spot kick given away by Montreal in its last three games, but
defender Josh Gardner viewed Wednesday's result in a positive light.
"Just to be able to turn around from a 5-2 loss in New York and come out in
Salt Lake against a quality side in their home ... it tells us that our team's
chemistry is getting better, we're connecting more, we're getting our
chances," said Gardner. "We've been unlucky here and there, we've given up
three penalties this year, so if you take those away, I think we were in every
game, at that point."
Despite reaching the semifinals of the CONCACAF Champions League, TFC has not
been able to translate that success into league play, losing its first three
games by a combined score of 7-1.
The club has started a season with three straight losses for the second time
in its history, matching the start of the 2007 squad in its inaugural season.
A 202-minute goal drought is the main culprit for TFC's slow start, but
striker Danny Koevermans believes things have to turn around.
"We played better, we had more chances," Koevermans said following his team's
1-0 defeat against the Columbus Crew. "If we weren't having chances, then we
should be concerned. Of course there is frustration. But that's normal, I
think. ... It has to turn around. It's impossible if it goes like this and we
don't score and keep losing. It's impossible."
Toronto's last match also came on Wednesday, a 6-2 defeat in Mexico against
Santos in the semifinal round of the CONCACAF Champions League, which
eliminated the club from the competition.
There was more bad news this week as it was announced that goalkeeper Stefan
Frei will miss the next 4-6 months after undergoing surgery to repair torn
ligaments in his left ankle, leaving Milos Kocic to take charge between the
04/06 16:25:04 ET