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Ten-man Impact fall to Heredia in CCL

BlakeSmithMontrealImpactHeredia1 (Reuters)


Even with a number of first team regulars left back home, the Montreal Impact looked like they had a chance to get out of Guatemala with at least a point.

Instead, a last-gasp goal by CD Heredia just before the end of regulation sent the Impact to a 1-0 defeat on the turf of Estadio Cementos Progreso. The goal put a sour taste in the mouth of the team, who had to play the entire second half down a man.

Playing without Matteo Ferrari, Alessandro Nesta, Patrice Bernier, and Marco Di Vaio among others, the Impact nearly went down a goal 19 minutes in. An Impact challenge in the box lead to a penalty being called for Heredia, one of many questionable calls by the referee made in the game. Luckily for the Impact and goalkeeper Evan Bush, the ensuing spot kick hit the crossbar and bounced away.

Bush was called upon again three minutes later, making an acrobatic kick save as Heredia midfielder David Espinoza’s shot took a deflection on it’s way to goal.

The game took a turn though in the 44th minute, as Impact defender Adrian “Piscu” Lopez was shown a red card for a slide tackle in the middle of the field, reducing the Impact to ten men. Despite the disadvantage, the Impact still were creating chances. Forward Daniele Paponi had an opportunity just before the hour mark go straight into the arms of the Heredia goalkeeper Jose Calderon, while Blake Smith had the Canadian side’s best chance, but his shot inside the box cannoned off the left post.

In the 88th minute, the Impact’s fate was finally sealed. On a Heredia corner kick, the ball found it’s way to forward Charles Cordoba, who stabbed it across the line to give his side the lead and eventual three points.

Next up for the Impact is a crucial MLS Eastern Conference home match against the Houston Dynamo on Saturday.

Here are the match highlights:


  1. I think you have to take this as a one off. There are a couple of reasons I say that. First, the Impact have a roster that has older players (like DiVaio and Nesta) that can’t play 3 games a week. Age just hinders that. Even in other sports, past a certain age your time in competition gets managed. There are exceptions, but that’s the rule.

    Also, the American sides have taken the competition pretty seriously since RSL got to the final. The league wants to win the competition. TFC even took it pretty seriously when they were in the competition. I think it may have just been the Impact taking a look at Heredia and feeling like they could get a result with the roster that they took down there. It’s their first time in the competition, and so maybe there was a bit of underestimation of what it would take to win a game like that on their part.

    That’s my guess anyway. If you look at most MLS teams in the CCL, particularly the last several years, they take it pretty seriously.

    • It isn’t their first time in the CCL. They were in the quarterfinals in 2008-2009. They know the competition, beating honduran and mexican teams

    • How is MLS treating this like a joke? Specifically, how did Montreal do so? They has most of their starters in for this game. It’s not like they rolled out a reserve side here.

      • I watched VĂ­ctor Manuel Vucetich’s (Monterrey’s Coach) interview after they beat RSL. Vucetich is a man’s man and a professional, and the respect and credit he gave Kreis’ team was very heart felt. MLS teams don’t need to win CCL anytime soon, playing against technical and shrewd Liga MX teams in tough conditions is a growth experience in and of itself.

        All CCL needs is for Herculez Gomez to get back from his injury and start up again his masterful trolling of MLS teams to make it more fun.

    • Not sure MLS treat this tournament like a joke. I think its a mix of assuming you will beat Concacaaf teams(other than Mexican/Costa Rican teams) without all your starters. Also MLS coaches jobs depends mostly how well they do in MLS season/playoffs and very little on success in Concacaaf champions league or US Open Cup.

    • they dont treat it like a joke, they just dont get the funds to be able to buy enough players to compete in mls and the ccl at the same time. salary cap is hindering mls now bad


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