Impact Hosts Rival Toronto FC Saturday Night at Stade Saputo
MONTREAL - The Montreal Impact will play the first Canadian Classique of the season, this Saturday at 7:30pm, when its rival, Toronto FC, visits Stade Saputo. Fewer than 1,000 tickets remain available on impactmontreal.com.
"We all need to assume the thing we all want, which is to finish near the top of the standings for the playoffs," said Impact head coach Rémi Garde. "In our last two games, we could have done better. Against Minnesota, we should have been better, especially in the last half hour. We're all extremely motivated to bring this difficult sequence to an end."
Stade Saputo's gates will at 5:30pm, allowing you to take advantage of the summer. From 5:30pm to 6:30pm, the 2-for-1 special on all drinks will be in place, and animations, numerous activities, and photobooths will be available beneath the stands. Video game enthusiasts can try their luck against LyesMTL, the Impact's eSports player in the BMO Celebration Zone, on FIFA 19 on PS4. Finally, a new pregame ritual, during which supporters will be able to welcome players in the stadium's North stand, will take place as of 6pm, 90 minutes before kickoff. Please note as well that our new IMFC grilled cheeses made by chef Danny Smiles will henceforth be on the concessions' menu at Stade Saputo, starting as low as $2.83 (plus tax).
The MLS bag policy will be in place for this game. Backpacks, camera bags, and big tote bags, as well as any bag larger than 35cm x 35cm x 15cm will not be accepted inside the stadium.
Also, please note that more traffic than usual is to be expected in the Sherbrooke/Pie-IX/Pierre-de-Coubertin/Viau area, as well as to access the different parking lots around Stade Saputo due to roadwork.
The Viau metro station is undergoing an important renovation project. Construction on the new bus rapid transit corridor (BRT) on Pie-IX Boulevard has begun, and as such, traffic on Pie-IX between the A40 and Pierre-de-Coubertin Street will be impeded, while bus routes may be diverted. The P1, P2, P3, P4 parking lots are available. The P5 parking lot is reserved for Members with a parking pass.
A new chapter in the Montreal-Toronto rivalry
For the first time since 2014, the two clubs will face each other just twice in MLS regular season action: this Saturday in Montreal, and on August 24 at BMO Field, in Toronto. Last year, the Impact won two of its three games against the Queen City representatives, winning 1-0 in the beginning of the year at Olympic Stadium, before earning another clean sheet against Greg Vanney's men at Stade Saputo, edging them out 2-0.
Rémi Garde's men will be looking to bounce back at home after suffering two consecutive losses in MLS for the first time this season. Now fourth in the Eastern Conference, a win would bring Montreal 10 points ahead of Toronto, currently occupying the seventh and last playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
"It's a must-win," said Impact full-back Bacary Sagna. "We know it's a rivalry, and we know how important it is for our supporters, but for the club as well. Now that I'm here, I feel like a Quebecer, I feel like a Montrealer, so obviously I want to win this game. This rivalry has been around for a long time and we know it's a very important game, one we absolutely need to win."
Toronto FC has been in a difficult stretch as of late. The Reds have just one win since May 4, which represents just one victory in 11 MLS games. TFC has also allowed 10 goals in their last five games.
Reinforcements have arrived for Toronto FC, however, who will have Michael Bradley, Jozy Altidore, Jonathan Osorio and Ashtone Morgan available for selection for the first time since the international break. Toronto has also recently acquired defender Omar Gonzalez, midfielder Erickson Gallardo, as well as forward Patrick Mullins.
"They have good players and they're a good team," said defender Jukka Raitala. "On our end, we need to be more focused individually. We've played good games, but we've made mistakes recently that have cost us. We need to work well together and keep our work ethic very high."
Montreal will head to Ohio to take on Columbus Crew SC at MAPFRE Stadium on Saturday, July 20, at 7:30pm (TVA Sports, 98.5, TSN 690), before hosting York9 FC at Stade Saputo for the second leg of the Canadian Championship quarterfinal on Wednesday, July 24, at 7:30pm (TICKETS - 98.5, TSN 690).
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