Familiar foes travel to Orlando City Stadium as the Montreal Impact look to tame the Lions for the second time in just 10 days. While the league’s lengthy World Cup break is coming to a close, Orlando City will bookend it with the Quebecois side.
SB Nation’s own Emily Santella — Managing Editor of Mount Royal Soccer— is back again to provide some updates and insight since last Wednesday’s match. If you’re interested in reading my answers to their questions, you can find them over at their site.
Ignacio Piatti got out of his slump in style last match. What was different about the Argentinian last Wednesday than the matches leading up to it where he went scoreless?
Emily Santella: Piatti was given a surprise rest against Dallas and it was revealed that it was due to a lingering minor injury. I think that this rest time, and ultimately time to properly heal his injury, allowed him to break out of his slump. In addition, the early penalty allowed him to start the game off on the right foot.
The Impact have just one positive result on the road this year. What does Montreal need to improve on to take points back home?
ES: The Impact have shown they can either be dominant and well organized or crumble completely in front of their opposition this season. Moreover, their biggest struggle has been in the final third. Even in their win against Orlando on the 13th, they benefited from a penalty, an own goal and a side pushing forward to try and get back into a game. The Impact need to be more decisive in the final third and more deadly with their plays.
Do you think Remi Garde will change anything up tactically given the back-to-back matches?
ES: I think most of the tactical changes that will happen may be due to injuries. Jeisson Vargas, who left the game with an injury. has been absent from practice and will not play. Raheem Edwards left practice prematurely on Tuesday but was present on Wednesday; his availability may be questionable. In addition, it will be interesting to see if Jukka Raitala makes a return to the lineup. Most of the season he played as a center back instead of his natural position (left back). With the relationship installed between Rudy Camacho and Rod Fanni it would be surprising to see him take either one’s spot but I could see him taking Lovitz’s spot on the left.
What injuries/suspensions will keep players out this weekend and what is your projected lineup and predicted final score?
ES: Injuries: Zakaria Diallo (out), Kyle Fisher (out), Victor Cabrera (out), Michael Petrasso (questionable), Louis Béland-Goyette (out), David Choinière (out), Jeisson Vargas (out).
Predicted lineup (4-3-3): Evan Bush; Chris Duvall, Rod Fanni, Rudy Camacho, Jukka Raitala; Ken Krolicki, Samuel Piette, Saphir Taider; Alejandro Silva, Anthony Jackson-Hamel, Ignacio Piatti.
Predicted final score: Impact will get their second road win, 2-1.
Thanks again to Emily for taking the time to answer some questions about the bleu-blanc-noir.