Competition: MLS Playoffs (Eastern Conference Knockout Round) – DC United vs Montreal Impact
Venue: RFK Stadium – Thursday, October 27th – 19:30 ET (00:30 GMT)
Match Odds: DC United 21/20 – Draw 12/5 – Montreal Impact 12/5
DC come into the tie on an incredible run of home form. They haven’t lost in nine at RFK and have won their last four on the bounce there.
However, Ben Olsen will have his side fully aware that form isn’t everything heading into this game and will be the first to remind his players they conceded four times in their last game of the regular season.
DC haven’t beaten Montreal in their last three attempts in all competitions, so there is work to be done for them to overturn that run of form.
Montreal Impact have won just two of their last eight games ahead of this knockout round. There have been problems ongoing off the field with Didier Drogba, so a win in this one would bring a huge amount of pleasure to Mauro Biello.
Impact finished the regular season in 5th place, but they suffered a heavy 3-0 final day defeat to New England.
Biello rested a couple of key faces in that tie, most notably Ignacio Piatti, who has been their standout player this season. A lot rides on the Argentine’s shoulders but he is a man who has oozed confidence for the whole of the 2016 campaign.
DC United have six injury concerns heading into the playoffs as Chris Korb, Chris Rolfe and Charlie Horton are all expected to be out, while there are still questions over the inclusion of Kofi Opare, Sean Franklin and Marcelo Sarvas.
Andres Romero remains Montreal Impact’s only injury concern. It remains to be seen whether Didier Drogba will return to the side following his soap opera saga in the last few weeks.
DC United’s form: W/W/W/W/L
Montreal Impact’s form: L/W/W/D/L
Key Stat: DC United are unbeaten in their last nine home games and have won their last four on the bounce at RFK Stadium.
Key Player: Bill Hamid – The DC ‘keeper will need to be at his best to shut out a Montreal side with plenty of attacking threat.
DC United 2-1 Montreal Impact – DC United to make the most of their incredible home form and progress to the semifinals. Montreal Impact have won just two of their last 13 away games and this one looks like it will a step too far for them.