It’s been exactly a month since CF Montreal played at home, and it’s with a first game at Stade Saputo this season that the team marks its return in front of its fans.
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It is the Vancouver Whitecaps who will be the visitors, and they have had a bad time since the start of the campaign.
While the Montrealers will be aiming for a third straight win and a fourth straight game without a loss, the Vancouverites will just be trying to take off.
The West Coast team has a poor record of one win, four losses and a draw, and has been beaten three times in as many outings on enemy turf.
Wilfried Nancy went with a somewhat conventional formula when it came to the visitors’ bad start to the season.
“We don’t look at the standings, each game has its story,” said the head coach of CF Montreal.
“The Whitecaps have a particular way of defending. They can be low, but also very aggressive with outside players,” he added.
Nancy also believes that her formation will have to be careful not to be surprised by excess numbers.
“We know that the way we play, the teams will try to put balls behind the defense. »
“I ask defenders to play when it’s time and I also ask them to defend 40 yards behind their goal. It’s a big challenge for them, but they try to do it well. »
The players are excited at the idea of returning to Stade Saputo after a few games at the Olympic Stadium to start the season.
“It’s a match we’ve been waiting for a month and a half, the date was circled in the calendar,” said Alistair Johnston.
“We had the chance to train at the stadium on Thursday for the first time, the grass was beautiful and we saw everyone’s attitude change instantly,” continued the defender.
If the team wants to look good for its return to Stade Saputo, Nancy does not want to impose additional stress on its men.
“It’s normal to think that a team wants to win all its games at home, but we collect points on the road so I don’t want to put more pressure on the players. »
“It’s not a win-at-all-costs situation, it’s just a game we have to win. »
The fact that this first home game is against the Whitecaps gives the club more momentum. Johnston has family in Vancouver, while his parents are in Toronto.
He therefore fully understands the importance of these national meetings.
“For us, Vancouver and Toronto generate different motions. There are only three Canadian teams [dans la MLS], then these meetings are a little more important. »
Sans Piette and Choinière
On the other hand, we will still have to wait to see the return of Samuel Piette and Mathieu Choinière.
The former injured his foot in a Canada game against Honduras. The second is also injured in a foot.
“They are not available, confirmed Nancy. They are coming back well and it is good to see them. When you have a wound that is not clear, they take a few steps forward and a few steps back. »
“It will take several days, I do not want to speak in weeks. There is still work to be done,” said the head coach of the Montreal eleven.
The adversary in 5 points
You don’t have to look far to understand the problems of the Vancouver Whitecaps at the start of the season. The offense is absent with only five goals in six games, even though the team has only been shut out twice.
Even though the Whitecaps shot 70 times at the opposing goalkeeper, only 15 balls were on target, the lowest total in MLS. It’s no wonder they’re dead last in shot accuracy at just 21.4%.
Place in Hasal
With the departure of Maxime Crépeau for Los Angeles FC, it is to young Thomas Hasal that the “Caps” have entrusted the net. It’s not an easy start to the campaign for him with an average of two goals against per game.
The Whitecaps seem to be in dire need of a boss in the opposing box. The team only scored five goals, all of them by different players. And out of those five goals, there were only two assists. This means that the collective game suffers.
The end of the half is difficult for Vancouver, which gave up three times in the last 15 minutes of the first and second half. These are therefore six goals out of the 12 awarded since the start of the season.
journaldemontreal Fr Sport