Impact Faces Chicago Fire Wednesday Night in Bradenton
ST. PETERSBURG, Florida - The Montreal Impact will begin a series of four games in 11 days on Wednesday night at 7pm, when they face the Chicago Fire at IMG Academy in a preseason friendly. The game will be broadcast on the club's website, impactmontreal.com
After a 2-0 victory on Saturday night in Las Vegas in its first game of the year, the Bleu-blanc-noir will continue its preseason preparations against the Fire. The challenge will certainly be harder for Rémi Garde's squad and will represent a new opportunity to judge the players' progress, less than three weeks before the beginning of the MLS season.
"We feel great physically," said midfielder Raheem Edwards. "The work we're doing now will help us play games and be successful. We're going to play games every three of four days in the coming weeks, so we'll get the opportunity to play lots of minutes. Chicago is a good possession team, it will allow us to work on the defensive aspect of our game."
"We will do everything we can to implement what we learn at practice during games," said midfielder David Choinière. "We're going to use these games to make sure we're ready for the beginning of the season. We want to showcase our qualities on the field against real opponents. It will be a good test against a good team, to see how far along we are in our preparation."
The Fire has played two preseason games so far. After a 2-0 victory over the University of South Florida on February 3, Veljko Paunovic's team played to a 0-0 draw against the Philadelphia Union last Thursday.
Chicago concluded the 2017 MLS regular season as the third seed in the Eastern Conference, before being decisively eliminated by the New York Red Bulls in the knockout round. The team's stars, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Nemanja Nikolic, Dax McCarthy and Michael De Leeuw, are all back for this season.
The Impact will continue its preseason preparations against the Tampa Bay Rowdies, this Saturday at 7:30pm at Al Lang Stadium, the Philadelphia Union on Wednesday, February 21 at Joe DiMaggio Sports Complex, and finally, New York City FC on Saturday, February 24 at 5pm at Al Lang Stadium.
The team will kick off its season with two games on the road, in Vancouver on March 4 and Columbus on March 10, before playing its home opener at Olympic Stadium on Saturday, March 17, at 3pm, against its biggest rival, Toronto FC.
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