Hey, did you hear? P.K. Subban signed a long-term contract! I don’t blame you if you haven’t heard, it was easy to miss
Well, it turns out Subban’s contract would be the only good news for Montreal sports fans today, as the Impact lost 2-0 to rivals Toronto F.C.
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The Impact’s defense had a hard time dealing with Toronto’s attack, who imposed their will on the back line by way of 16 shots, six of them on target.
TFC was without the services of star striker Jermain Defoe. He was sitting this one out with an injury and Toronto didn’t miss him.
Defoe’s replacement, Gilberto, opened the scoring in the 11th minute with a Dominic Oduro’s centering pass found the Brazilian alone on the penalty spot. His shot hit the bar and went down and there was a moment of confusion as it was unclear whether the ball had completely crossed the line. The referee then signaled for a goal and replays show the ball, indeed went all the way in.
Luke Moore would double the visitors’ lead in the 54th. Michael Bradley fed Oduro a beautiful, 50 yard pass. Oduro then picked out Moore to cap off an outstanding counter-attacking move.
The Impact had a hard time coming back from the blow, especially considering they had a good amount of possession at that point in the game and were threatening.
Coach Frank Klopas pointed to his team’s lack of energy as the culprit in the loss.
"“From an energy standpoint, we weren’t there,” said Klopas in a press release. “We felt we would be fresh because we didn’t over do it in training, but we were flat.”"
Patrice Bernier had the same feelings as his coach.
"I don’t want to make excuses for today,” Bernier was quoted in the same press release. “This was a derby game against Toronto. We should have been more up for this one.”"
One bright spot was the debut of attacker Anthony-Jackson Hamel, who was signed out of the Impact academy yesterday. He was given a birthday present (he turned 21 yesterday) as he was subbed in in the 65th minute.
Rookie Eric Miller started in the midfield for the Impact. It was the American’s first action in over a month, as he was sidelined due to an injury. Miller played well, but seems to be more comfortable as a wing back.
Troy Perkins was back in goal for Montreal. It looked like Perkins had fallen out of favour with the coaching staff and back-up Evan Bush was given the past three starts. The 33-year-old really can’t be blamed for either for TFC’s goals.
Toronto, who are now in 3rd in the Eastern Conference with a game in hand, will travel to Columbus to face the Crew on Saturday, August 9th.
The Impact will have to recover quickly, as they have their first match of the CONCACAF Champions League on Tuesday. They will face Salvadorian club CD FAS at home. Their next MLS game will be on August 9th, when they will play the Philadelphia Union at PPL Park.