Montreal 2-1 Toronto

Toronto FC v Montreal Impact

Game in a sentence

A couple of controversial calls evened out, as Montreal send their rivals home with no points and some solace.

Observations

  • TFC’s amazing supporters set another MLS mark, breaking their own record–at Columbus–for traveling supporters. There would’ve been more if not for a highway accident that left bus loads of Reds fans in limbo on the 401.
  • Montreal started in a 4-1-4-1. A formation made viable by the presence of Patrice Bernier behind Montreal’s midfield. TFC’s starting lineup went unchanged from their home opening win against Sporting KC.
  • Alessandro Nesta played back to back 90 minute games for the third time as a member of the Impact. He lasted 12 minutes (hamstring) before making way for Dennis Iapichino.
  • The visitors came close to opening the scoring in the 28th minute. Excellent work from John Bostock on the left flank played Hogan Ephraim through. The QPR attacker’s first touch was solid, but his cross to Robert Earnshaw was intercepted by Jeb Brovsky. It was a terrific play by the Montreal defender.
  • The game’s first goal came minutes later thanks to a controversial call by referee Baldermo Toledo’s assistant. Andres Romero streaked into the box, positioning himself to play for a penalty. He got his wish when Ashtone Morgan attempted to play the ball. Your unbiased correspondent believed the call was harsh.
  • Marco Di Vaio made it 2-0 at the end of the first half, accepting an excellent through ball from Davy Arnaud and calmly beating Joe Bendik. Replays showed Di Vaio was a shade offside.
Pic via @davisjsn

Pic via @davisjsn

  • Whatever Ryan Nelsen said at halftime seemed to inspire his players, as TFC emerged from the caverns of Olympic Stadium with purpose in the second half.
  • A pair of blunders from the Impact nearly gifted Toronto their first goal. Reggie Lambe intercepted a wayward pass and made his way into the box. Eventually the ball found Bostock, whose shot was deflected to Ephraim. His strike banged off the crossbar. Seconds later a terrible clearance from Troy Perkins gave Earnshaw a chance at goal. The ensuing shot drew an excellent save from Perkins.
  • Toronto would finally get on the scoreboard thanks to another awful call from Toledo’s crew. Terry Dunfield’s Tony worthy dive drew a  penalty. Somehow. Earnshaw deposited the kick and it was game on. An eye for an eye makes the world go round, two wrongs do make a right and so forth. Montreal’s shutout streak ended at 238 minutes.
  • Darel Russell replaced Morgan in the 65th minute and did well. As did fellow fullback Richard Eckersley, whose work rate was once again impressive.
  • TFC never got an equalizer. On a whole their free kicks were pretty abysmal, including several poor corner kicks from Ephraim.
  • Toronto can take some positives away from their trip to Montreal. A strong second half performance should give Nelsen something to build on going forward.

Three stars

1. Davy Arnaud

2. Andres Romero

3. Richard Eckersley