Top 25 Montreal Sports Moments Of 2014: 15-11

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Oct 25, 2014; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; Montreal Impact forward Marco Di Vaio (9) cheers with the fans after the game against D.C. United at the Stade Saputo. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

13. Marco Di Vaio’s Final Game

Marco Di Vaio was the Impact’s best player from the time they joined Major League Soccer in 2012. He was the Impact’s first designated player and he led the team from the time he joined.

He became the Impact’s first MLS star and when it was announced he would retire at the end of the season, everyone knew that his last game would be against D.C. United to close out a very disappointing MLS season.

In the 26th minute of his last game, Di Vaio did what he does and did best for 20 years – score goals. Di Vaio fittingly scored to open up a 1-0 lead for the Impact.

It wasn’t the winning goal that he probably wanted at the beginning of the game, as D.C. United scored to tie the game at one.

The 38 year old holds the Impact records for goals in a season and for MLS goals. In 2013, he had 20 goals and was a finalist for league most valuable player as the team made their first playoff appearance. He led the Impact with nine goals in 2014, a disappointing season all around.

His 34 career MLS goals for the Impact are more than the next two players (Patrice Bernier [13] and Felipe [12]) combined. He leaves a big hole for the team to replace, but his impact on the Impact (no pun intended) was immense.

His teammates say he was the perfect designated player for the Impact to bring both relevance and leadership to a team that was making a big step from the NASL to MLS. He helped in that transition and now the team prepares for their next step, not only to replace Di Vaio on the field but also his contributions to the team’s image.

-Jared Book

Next: No. 12: The Big Three Back Together