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MLS – soccer: CF Montreal receives a visit from Atlanta United

MLS – soccer: CF Montreal receives a visit from Atlanta United

Over the past few days, everyone in Montreal has stressed the importance of not dropping points that could be crucial to a playoff goal as the team prepares to play, Saturday night at Saputo Stadium, the first of a series of three matches against head-to-head. Competitors in the Eastern Conference standings.

But just like they did last Saturday night, CG outperformed their opponents in both possession and shooting percentage, except for the most important stat: goals, a 1-0 loss against Atlanta United. In front of a packed house of 19,619 fans.

Thus, CF suffered a defeat at home for the second consecutive match – the first since September 2020, in addition to not being able to find the back of the net for the third match in a row. Since the start of the MLS campaign, it’s already the 10th game without a goal.

Sunday morning, Montreal will wake up 9th in the East with 26 points in 21 games, but they’re tied with 4 other teams – New York Red Bulls, Chicago Fire, Charlotte SC and New York City CF. Chicago and Charlotte will also be CF’s next opponents on Wednesday and Saturday before MLS boycotts its activities for one month due to the League Cup being held from July 21 to August 19.

The outcome of tonight’s game is even more disappointing, given that Montreal limited scoring opportunities (3 shots on goal) from one of the best offenses in MLS (39 goals in 21 games). before today). The cliché is that the best players always find a way to shine when the time is right and that’s exactly what happened.

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It was set-piece specialist Thiago Almada who was at the origin of the only goal of the match scored by Brooks Lennon in the 54th minute, after his free kick was found from the entrance to the roof at his teammate’s feet, just after touching the post to the left of Jonathan Siroa. The Montreal goalkeeper was completely out of action by skating to block the little Argentine midfielder’s display.

We knew they were dangerous from a dead end. We should have been more careful with the second ball because we had the chance to clear it, and CF Montreal coach Hernan Losada lamented it after the game. It was their only real chance in the match. »

Almada got that privileged position on the floor after referee Rudy Camacho fouled after what appeared to be a harmless contact. Izmir Oekmic’s work was heavily criticized by Losada, who felt that the game did not have enough rhythm.

“In a perspective where we want to sell a product, the referee must not stop the game every time a player falls to the ground,” Losada analyzed. The yellow card for the Atlanta goalkeeper (who unnecessarily threw himself on the field, editor’s note) came when the game was already over. The referee is largely responsible for the poor quality of the presentation.

“I don’t know if there was a mistake, but all I did was put myself in front of him, and defended Camacho. One thing was for sure, there was room to win or go for a point.

“I think we lacked a bit of personality. There was sometimes an unwillingness to go for the last ball or the last pass. It sure is very frustrating.”

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CF Ex decisively dominated the first half, with Mason Toye getting two scoring chances in the space of almost ten minutes. His second goal, a header after a corner kick from Bryce Duke, went just over the goal. Duke was the most threatening in the 34th minute, but Brad Guzman made a sharp touchdown to get in the way.

Losada unsuccessfully tried to strengthen his attack by replacing Sonosi Ibramin with Jules Anthony Vilsane and Mason Tui with Chenonso Ofore in the second half, but it was George Campbell who had the best chance in the 80th minute. But his powerful shot went over the enemy’s cage. None of the locals’ shots hit the target in the second half.

Even though more than 10 minutes of extra time had passed, CF were unable to come close to creating a tie partly thanks to the referee’s high number of fouls. However, the replay time will be very short, as the club will be in action on Wednesday in Chicago.