MLS Preview and Prediction: Montreal Impact vs New York City FC

Major League Soccer: Montreal Impact vs New York City FC

Stade Saputo – Wednesday, September 27 – 19:30 ET (00:30 BST)

Match Odds: Montreal 23/20 – Draw 5/2 – NYCFC 2/1

Montreal Impact vs New York City FC: Preview

Montreal Impact welcome New York City FC to Stade Saputo on Wednesday night with their season hanging by a thread. The home side’s playoff hopes are in the balance and they need three points to keep them alive.

Montreal’s postseason hopes received a huge boost with last Wednesday’s 5-3 win at Toronto. But they followed that result up with a 2-0 defeat at Atlanta on Saturday and still have it all to do.

The Impact have made the playoffs in each of the past two seasons but are at real risk of missing out this time around. They trail the New York Red Bulls by three points coming into Wednesday’s games. Plus, the Red Bulls have a game in hand.

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Montreal are six points off matching last season’s total points tally with five games to go. They haven’t necessarily gone backwards as a team, but failing to make the postseason would be a massive disappointment.

New York City will have no such problem as they booked their place in the playoffs this weekend. They became the second team to guarantee a top six finish in the East, as results went in their favour.

Despite failing to beat DC United at home in that 1-1 draw, NYCFC secured their playoff berth as a result of the Impact’s loss at Atlanta. The visitors will now be hoping to pile more misery on the Canadian side as they look to pick up form ahead of the postseason.

Patrick Vieira’s men haven’t won in three and know they need to improve form over the final few games of the regular season. They have only lost one of their last eight and are tough to beat but need to rediscover that clinical edge before entering knockout football.

This will be the second and final meeting between the two sides in 2017, unless they meet in the playoffs. They shared the points in a 1-1 draw at Yankee Stadium back in Week 3. NYCFC have won both their previous away trips to Montreal in MLS so far.

Montreal Impact vs New York City FC: Team News

Montreal’s only injury concern remains Ambroise Oyongo as the left-back is out for the season. Hernan Bernadello, Laurent Ciman, Blerim Dzemaili and Victor Cabrera are all one booking away from suspension and need to be careful.

New York City FC will travel to Montreal without three players. Miguel Camargo and Maxime Chanot are long-term absentees, while Yangel Herrera is also sidelined. Alex Ring is listed as ‘questionable’ with a toe injury. Maxi Moralez is one booking away from suspension.

Montreal Impact vs New York City FC: Key Points

Montreal Impact’s last five: L/L/L/W/L

New York City FC’s last five: D/W/L/D/D

Key Stat: Montreal have lost three consecutive home games coming into Wednesday’s game. They have not lost four in a row at home in MLS since joining the league in 2012.

Key Player: Ignacio Piatti – If Montreal are going to keep their playoff hopes alive, they need their star man to shine. The playmaker scored twice and picked up one assist in the 5-3 win over Toronto last week. Expect him to look to take the game to New York City from the off, as he looks to prove the difference once again.

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Montreal Impact vs New York City FC: Prediction

Montreal Impact 2-2 New York City FC – The problem for Montreal is that they are so inconsistent. They can put goals past anyone when on song, as proven against Toronto last week. But they concede too many and that ultimately costs them more often than not. NYCFC have dropped off a little themselves, but they are still hard to beat. The Impact need this more but they might not have enough left to make the postseason for the third-straight season. Score draw.


MLS Preview and Prediction: Montreal Impact vs Chicago Fire

Major League Soccer: Montreal Impact vs Chicago Fire

Stade Saputo – Wednesday August 16 – 19:30 ET (00:30 BST)

Match Odds: Montreal 6/5 – Draw 12/5 – Chicago 2/1

Montreal Impact vs Chicago Fire: Preview

Montreal Impact take on Chicago Fire on Wednesday night as Week 24 kicks off with a midweek matchup. The Impact come into the game high in confidence, after winning 3-0 at Philadelphia on Saturday.

That result moved the Impact up to seventh in the East and five points behind Atlanta in the final playoff spot. Montreal have won three of their last five MLS games and have picked up form at the perfect time.

Mauro Biello’s side weren’t expected to make the top six after an underwhelming season. But their recent performances will have lifted the mood around the club. Ignacio Piatti and Blerim Dzemaili have been standout performers and could yet lead the Canadian side into their third-straight playoffs.

Chicago Fire were having an incredible season. But a recent dip in form has seen their hopes of winning a first Supporters’ Shield since 2003 fade. Saturday’s 3-1 loss at the Columbus Crew was their third in their last four games.

The Fire still have 11 games to play but they are six points behind Toronto FC coming into Wednesday’s match.

A win in Montreal would put them straight back into contention and would see them move back into second, ahead of NYCFC. But a loss would put their credentials into serious jeopardy. The likes of the Red Bulls, Columbus and Atlanta are all close behind, so Chicago can’t afford many slip-ups.

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Veljko Paunovic’s men haven’t kept a clean sheet in five outings. But Chicago know that they still have the tools to hurt any team. They won 3-0 at Montreal last season and a repeat result would settle any nerves starting to creep in.

The reverse fixture this season ended 2-2 a Toyota Park back in April. Both sides had a man sent off on that day, and both scored in stoppage time in a dramatic clash. Ballou Jean-Yves Tabla looked to have won it for the Impact in the 90th minute. But Luis Solignac ensured the points would be shared as he equalised in the 93rd minute.

Montreal Impact vs Chicago Fire: Team News

Ambroise Oyongo is still Montreal’s only injury absentee. Mauro Biello would probably like to name an unchanged side but he does have Saturday’s game against Real Salt Lake to consider as well.

Chicago Fire boss still has four players sidelined through injury. John Goossens, Jorge Bava, Brandon Vincent and Daniel Johnson are all out. Michael Harrington is a doubt as he’s been struggling with illness. Juninho has recovered from a knee injury and should be in line to start.

Montreal Impact vs Chicago Fire: Key Points

Montreal Impact’s last five: W/L/L/W/W

Chicago Fire’s last five: D/L/L/W/L

Key Stat: Montreal Impact have won five of their last six home matches in MLS. They’ve outscored their opponents 12-5 in that time.

Key Player: Ignacio Piatti – The fact is, Montreal are a better side when Piatti is in the team. The Argentine playmaker leads the team with ten goals, despite starting just 15 games this season. He has two goals and an assist in his last two outings and will look to keep his strong form going here.

Montreal Impact vs Chicago Fire: Prediction

Montreal Impact 2-1 Chicago Fire – This isn’t an easy game to call. Yes the Fire are out of form. Yes, they’ve been leaking goals. But they are still one of the East’s most well-rounded sides. However, Montreal are on a roll. They are looking for a third consecutive win and confidence seems to be growing with each game. If Piatti and Dzemaili are on song, they could once again prove the difference.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Orlando City vs Montreal Impact

Competition: Major League Soccer – Orlando City vs. Montreal Impact
Venue: Orlando City Stadium – Saturday, June 17 – 00:30 BST (19:30 EDT)
Match Odds: Orlando City 19/20 – Draw 5/2 – Montreal Impact 5/2

Match Preview

Orlando City welcome the in-form Montreal Impact to Orlando City Stadium on Saturday night in the hope of returning to winning ways after a tough run has seen them win just one of their last eight league games.

With seven points separating the two sides, there is already a significant gap that Montreal will want to shorten desperately. With the midpoint of the season approaching rapidly, Montreal will want to stay within arms length of the playoff spots. While Orlando will be desperate to remain in them after such a good start to the season.

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The International break is over and so both sides will hope to have fresh squads for this weekend’s game. However, there are numerous absentees this weekend with injuries and suspensions limiting both coaches options.

Orlando have only picked up one win in their last eight MLS games – a phenomenal turnaround considering they won six of their first seven this term. They also crashed out of the US Open Cup with a disappointing 3-1 home loss to Miami FC on Wednesday night, so Jason Kreis has some real problems to iron out.

In contrast, Montreal’s recent form has been good, with two wins in their last three and drawing the other. They will now look to make a significant challenge for the playoffs, after a dreadful start, in which they didn’t win a game until week six.

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Team News

Orlando City have no injury concerns for the upcoming weekend. However, Cyle Larin is expected to be unavailable after being arrested with a DUI charge on Wednesday night. Rafael Ramos and Antonio Nocerino are suspended.

Montreal Impact will definitely be without Ambroise Oyongo and Matteo Mancosu, who have long-term injuries. Hernan Bernardello, Ballou Jean-Yves Tabla, Louis Béland-Goyette and Andres Romero are all doubts. Chris Duvall is suspended.

Key Points

Orlando City’s last five: D/L/L/W/D

Montreal Impact’s last five: W/L/W/W/D

Key Stat: Orlando City have only lost one of their last ten home games in MLS.

Key Player: Ignacio Piatti – Montreal’s playmaker will have to be at his creative best to unlock a steady Orlando defence. With Orlando missing some key men, this is a good opportunity for the Impact to grab three points and a huge scalp to go with it, so they’ll be looking to Piatti for more inspiration.

Score Prediction

Orlando City 1-1 Montreal Impact – With a few big names missing, the tie opens up massively. Orlando’s form is below the level they showed early on this season, while Montreal are producing results recently. We see this one ending with honours even but both sides have a real chance of taking all three points.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Philadelphia Union vs Montreal Impact

Competition: Major League Soccer – Philadelphia Union vs. Montreal Impact 
Venue: Talen Energy Stadium – Saturday, April 22 -13:00 ET (18:00 BST)
Match Odds: Philadelphia Union 19/20 – Draw 12/5 – Montreal Impact 13/5

Match Preview

The two bottom sides in the Eastern Conference go head-to-head on Saturday night and as both sides will see this game as a winnable game, it could make for a good watch.

Still yet to register a win this season, Philadelphia are far from where they should be at this stage. And with four successive losses there are no signs of things improving anytime soon. The players aren’t performing and Jim Curtin is under pressure as a result.

Home form is a huge issue for the Union, having taken only one point from a possible nine at the Talen Energy Stadium this year. Much of this could be put down to the fact they have yet to win the battle for possession of the ball in any of their home games – something that’s unlikely to change against Montreal on Saturday.

The Impact are currently second-bottom in the East, which is far below expectations of this team as it possesses some serious talent. With only one win so far, something has to change very soon.

The return of Ignacio Piatti saw them take all three points against 10-man Atlanta last week, and he’ll be hoping to lead Montreal up the table now.

They have lost both of their away games at Western opposition this season but have picked up draws in both trips to Eastern rivals. Philadelphia are in a bad way and so the Impact will be looking for all three points here.

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There has been a red card in three of the Impact’s four away games this season so keeping 11 men on the pitch will be key if they are to pick up their first win on the road this term.

These two sides met three times last season, with the Impact going unbeaten against the Union. They picked up a 5-1 win either side of 1-1 draws but have yet to win away at Philadelphia in MLS.

Team News

Philadelphia Union are without some key first team players as Josh Yaro (shoulder) and Maurice Edu (ankle) remain out. John McCarthy is out with concussion and Ken Tribbett is out with an ankle sprain. Warren Creavalle is questionable with a calf contusion.

Montreal Impact will be missing Shamit Shome and Andres Romero with foot and hamstring injuries, respectively. Victor Cabrera is a doubt with a leg injury.

Key Points

Philadelphia Union’s form: D/L/L/L/L

Montreal Impact’s form: D/D/D/L/W

Key Stat: Montreal have failed to beat Philadelphia in the last six meetings between the two sides.

Key Player: Ignacio Piatti – Arguably on his day the best player in the league, Piatti possesses the ability to change games extremely quickly and is often the difference-maker. We expect much of the same in this clash as he will look to inspire Montreal to back-to-back wins following his return from injury.

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Score Prediction

Philadelphia Union 1-3 Montreal Impact – Going on recent form its difficult to see either side as a clear favourite, although given a clear lack of confidence from the Union we expect it to be comfortable for Montreal, who will be looking to build on last week’s win over Atlanta.

MLS Playoffs Preview and Prediction: Toronto FC vs Montreal Impact

Competition: MLS Playoffs (Eastern Conference Final – Second Leg) Toronto FC vs. Montreal Impact 

Venue: BMO Field – Wednesday, November 30 – 19:00 ET (00:00 BST)

Match Odds: Toronto FC 8/15 – Draw 3/1 – Montreal Impact 9/2

Match Preview

Toronto and Montreal Impact are set for a thrilling encounter on Wednesday night, with a place in the MLS Cup Final up for grabs as they lock horns in the Eastern Conference Championship second leg.

The winner of Tuesday’s game will face Seattle in the 2016 MLS Cup Final, where a first-time winner is guaranteed. If Toronto advance, they will host the final, but Seattle will play hosts if the Impact progress. 

Toronto come into the second leg 3-2 down after a nightmare hour to forget in the game in Montreal. The tie looked like it could have been out of their reach but Greg Vanney’s side showed why you cannot write them off as they scored twice in the last half hour to set up this incredible return clash.

Given the fightback from Toronto they now look favourites to advance, but there is still plenty of work to do here against a Montreal side who will be kicking themselves for letting such a vital lead go in front of their own fans.

Toronto have been impressive at BMO Field in 2016. They have won their last three home games but worryingly they did lose to Montreal the last time they welcomed them here. Nothing other than a victory will see Toronto advance to their first MLS Cup Final.

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Montreal Impact will be itching to ensure they do not miss out on the final now. They have improved year-on-year and reaching their first MLS Cup Final would be another part of their history that will never be forgotten.

Mauro Biello needs to make sure his side are calm from the get-go here. They still have that one-goal lead, so they need to play their normal game and shape up defensively against a strong Toronto attack.

There will be added emotion for the Impact squad as this could be the last time Didier Drogba plays, and while there have been some ups and downs in his short spell at the club, he will be missed. The Ivorian will want to sign off at the club in style, like he has done throughout his career, so losing this will not be an option for him and the rest of the squad.

Montreal’s task is far from simple and they know they cannot afford to allow Toronto time on the ball, so high-press is an option. Breaking up play and countering will make Impact dangerous and difficult to deal with. They will be out to grab a couple of away goals, as Toronto did at the Olympic Stadium last weekend.

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Team News

Vanney has a completely fit squad for this tie. He will be expecting maximum effort from his starting XI to ensure they make it through and pull off an impressive comeback.

Andres Romero remains Montreal’s only injury concern. Biello will be unlikely to unsettled the balance of his squad too much going into this one, but there may well be some defensive changes in an attempt to tighten up that backline.

Key Points

Toronto FC’s last five: W/W/W/W/L

Montreal Impact’s last five: L/W/W/W/W

Key Stat: Form – Toronto have won their last three home matches.

Key Player: Sebastian Giovinco – The stage is set for Giovinco to show his class once again. If he is presented with even a sniff at goal he is likely to find the back of the net. Toronto need him now more than ever if they’re to make the final.

Photo: Toronto FC

Photo: Toronto FC

Score Prediction

Toronto FC 2-0 Montreal Impact – Toronto to make the most of their firepower and pick apart the Montreal defence on home soil. It will be a sour end to the season for Montreal if they are to exit the playoffs here considering the commanding position they were in and it will be some turnaround if Toronto can pull it off.

MLS Playoffs Preview and Prediction: Montreal Impact vs Toronto FC

Competition: MLS Playoffs (Eastern Conference Final – First Leg) Montreal Impact vs. Toronto FC

Venue: Olympic Stadium – Tuesday, November 22nd – 20:00 ET (01:00 GMT)

Match Odds: Montreal Impact 11/8 – Draw 9/4 – Toronto FC 15/8

Match Preview

Montreal Impact welcome Toronto FC to Olympic Stadium on Tuesday evening in the first leg of the Eastern Conference Final, with a Canadian side guaranteed to make the MLS Cup Final for the first time ever.

This is a huge game for both of these rivals. Montreal have to make the most of home advantage and ensure they go into the second leg in a strong position, which will be easier said than done.

The Impact overcame the Red Bulls 3-1 on aggregate in the Conference Semifinal, a result that will have filled Mauro Biello’s squad with confidence.

This is the first time Montreal have reached the Eastern Conference Championship game so there is the added incentive to make even more history and reach the MLS Cup Final now.

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Toronto FC are also creating history. Before this year they had never won a playoff game. Greg Vanney’s side advanced to the Eastern Conference Championship they after completely destroyed NYCFC 7-0 on aggregate, a result that will never be forgotten.

While the squad will still be flying high off the back of that result, their attention must turn to making sure they go into the second leg after a positive performance away at Montreal on Tuesday.

Toronto fans will be praying their side avenges their elimination from the 2015 playoffs last season by Montreal and they are favourites to advance over the two legs.

If recent history is anything to go by for Toronto they stand a good chance of a favourable result here, as they are unbeaten in their last three visits to Stade Saputo in all competitions, drawing twice and winning one.

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Team News

Andres Romero remains out for Montreal Impact, while both Didier Drogba and Matteo Mancosu are both doubts to start. Drogba, though, is back in the picture after a month out.

Vanney has the pleasure of picking his side from a near fully fit squad as Steven Beitashour is his only injury concern ahead of the first leg.

Key Points

Montreal Impact’s form: D/L/W/W/W

Toronto FC’s form: D/W/W/W/W

Key Stat: Toronto FC have scored at least two goals in their last five MLS away games.

Key Player: Ignacio Piatti – The Montreal playmaker will be expected to provide and help his side take a lead into the second leg. This is going to be an extremely tough tie to win over both legs for Montreal, so they have to be in a strong position come the end of the first 90 minutes and Piatti will look to provide some magic once again.

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Score Prediction

Montreal Impact 1-1 Toronto FC – This is going to be a tight affair, neither side is going to want to give the other an advantage heading into the second leg, but a draw is a more favourable result for Toronto than Montreal, who will be desperate to win this one.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Montreal Impact vs Toronto FC

Competition: Major League Soccer – Montreal Impact vs. Toronto FC 

Venue: Stade Saputo – Sunday, October 16 – 15:00 ET (20:00 BST)

Match Odds: Montreal Impact 6/5 – Draw 23/10 – Toronto 21/10

Match Preview

Montreal Impact welcome rivals Toronto to Stade Saputo on Sunday in the penultimate weekend of fixtures. This is a tie that can have a huge an impact on the final MLS regular season standings.

Mauro Biello’s side are sitting 4th in the Eastern Conference on 44 points, five behind Toronto, depending on results going their way, Montreal can still finish the season in third place.

Montreal come into this one having won their last two games. The latest of the two, a 1-0 away win over Orlando.

The Impact have had a strong season and will be looking to take some form into the playoffs, but they have to ensure they get there first. Biello’s side are above the red line by five points. Their fate is in their own hands.

MLS: New York City FC vs. Montreal Impact

Toronto are still in the running to finish top of the East. Though they cannot win the Supporters’ Shield, topping their conference would cap off an impressive regular season.

Grey Vanney’s side are just two points behind both New York franchises, so the remaining two fixtures for all three sides are extremely important.

Toronto have been in great form on the road, winning their last three. They do however, come into this one without a win in four, all home games. This will have frustrated their fans no end, as they could have been in the running to win the Supporters’ Shield had they won those games.

Their latest outing was a surprising defeat to DC, a result they will be looking to forget and patch things over with in this tie. Toronto know they’re in for a tough game with so much at stake.

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Team News

Andres Romero remains the only injury concern for Montreal Impact.

Toronto could well be welcoming back Sebastian Giovinco in this tie but Vanney offered no guarantees, so the injury list remains just two players as Ashtone Morgan is expected to be out, while Gio is questionable.

Key Points

Montreal Impact’s last five: D/L/L/W/W

Toronto’s last five: W/D/D/D/L

Key Stat: Away form – Toronto have won their last three games on the road.

Key Player: Ignacio Piatti – The Argentine has netted an impressive 15 goals this season as well as registering four assists. Piatti has struck fear into opposition defenders since the start of the campaign and that will be no different this weekend.

MLS: New York City FC vs. Montreal Impact Ignacio Piatti

Score Prediction

Montreal Impact 2-2 Toronto – A draw would not be a surprising result given the magnitude of this tie. Neither side will be coming into it expecting to lose and the intensity of the game could certainly spice things up.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Orlando City vs Montreal Impact

Competition: Major League Soccer – Orlando City SC vs. Montreal Impact

Venue: Camping World Stadium – Sunday, October 2 – 13:00 ET (18:00 BST) 

Match Odds: Orlando 21/20 – Draw 23/10 – Montreal 5/2

Match Preview

Orlando City welcome Montreal Impact to Camping World Stadium on Sunday afternoon in a tie that can have an impact in the race for a playoff finish.

Recent form for Orlando looks likely to have cost them the chance of reaching the playoffs this season, but while it is still mathematically possible they have to continue fighting to make it into the top six in the Eastern Conference.

They’re five points behind the pack with three games remaining, all Jason Kreis can ask of his players is to give it their best and hope results go in their favour.

Orlando ended their three-game losing streak in midweek, drawing 0-0 with Toronto. Before that outing they had conceded 12 goals in three games.

New York Red Bulls vs Orlando City

Montreal Impact are closing in on a playoff finish. They are currently 4th in the East on 41 points, five above the red line.

Mauro Biello will be pleased with how his side performed in midweek, as they won 3-1 at home against San Jose.

That win was the first in four attempts for Montreal and it should give them the confidence to go on and finish the regular season with some positive results.

Impact are yet to beat Orlando in their regular season meetings in 2016, losing both the previous games, but they will see this as a chance to take all three points.

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Team News

Both Orlando City and Montreal Impact have the luxury of limited injuries. Orlando have a fully-fit squad, while Andres Romero remains the only player out for Montreal.

Key Points

Orlando City’s last five: W/L/L/L/D

Montreal Impact’s last five: L/D/L/L/W

Key Stat: Orlando City finally stopped the trend of conceding at least four goals. Before their 0-0 draw last time out, they had conceded 12 in three games

Key Player: Ignacio Piatti – The Montreal playmaker bagged his 15th goal of the season in their midweek win. He has had an incredible campaign and will be looking to cause a shaky Orlando defence problems. MLS: New York City FC vs. Montreal Impact Ignacio Piatti

Score Prediction

Orlando City 1-2 Montreal Impact – Montreal to pick up their first win of the season against Orlando. The home side have really struggled for form of late and Montreal will fancy their chances of all-but securing their playoff spot.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Montreal Impact vs Chicago Fire

Competition: Major League Soccer – Montreal Impact vs. Chicago Fire 

Venue: Stade Saputo – Saturday, August 20 – 19:30 ET (00:30 BST)

Match Odds: Montreal Impact 4/7 – Draw 14/5 – Chicago Fire 9/2

Match Preview

Montreal Impact welcome Chicago Fire to Stade Saputo on Saturday evening in an all Eastern Conference clash.

Impact are sitting 5th in the East, five points off of top spot. They have a comfortable six point lead on 7th place so they just need to make sure they keep picking up points to guarantee a playoff finish.

Montreal come into this one off the back of their 3-1 defeat to RBNY. They were ahead in the tie for all of one minute.

This is a tie Mauro Biello’s side really should be taking all three points in. They are favourites against a Chicago side who struggled on their travels.

MLS: New York City FC vs. Montreal Impact

Chicago Fire are sitting bottom of the East heading into this tie despite the fact that only two sides have conceded less goals than them in the conference so far this season.

This is the second meeting between Chicago and Montreal this season. The earlier meeting ended 2-1 to Impact at Toyota Park, a sickening result for Fire as the winner came in stoppage time.

Chicago drew with Orlando last weekend, a positive result, but it will be a big ask for them to build on that here.

The stats make for bleak reading for Chicago ahead of the tie, they haven’t won on the road in 28 Major League Soccer outings. The Fire haven’t enjoyed playing at Stade Saputo in recent times, they have lost their last four there.

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Team News

Montreal Impact have just the three injury concerns ahead of this tie as Andres Romero is out, while Harry Shipp and Patrice Bernier are both doubts.

Joao Meira is Chicago Fire’s only injury concern heading into this tie.

Key Points

Montreal Impact’s last five: L/W/D/W/L

Chicago Fire’s last five: L/L/D/L/D

Key Stat: Chicago Fire have failed to win any of their last 28 away ties in Major League Soccer.

Key Player: Ignacio Piatti – Montreal’s most consistent performer will look to open up Chicago Fire’s defence this weekend. He has netted 13 goals so far this season.

MLS: New York City FC vs. Montreal Impact Ignacio Piatti

Score Prediction

Montreal Impact 3-1 Chicago Fire – Montreal Impact to pick up a routine three points against a Chicago Fire side who just cannot get a win on their travels.

MLS Preview and Prediction: Montreal Impact vs Houston Dynamo

Competition: Major League Soccer – Montreal Impact vs. Houston Dynamo 

Venue: Stade Saputo – Saturday, August 6 – 19:30 ET (00:30 BST – Live on SS1)

Match Odds: Montreal Impact 4/5 – Draw 5/2 – Houston Dynamo 16/5

Match Preview

Montreal Impact host Houston Dynamo on Saturday night in a battle between teams experiencing contrasting seasons. It should be an entertaining fixture as both sides have won only once in their last five and so there is all to play for here.

Montreal currently sit fourth in the Eastern Conference, with hopes still very much intact of earning an automatic place in the Conference semifinals of the playoffs at the end of the season.

Despite their league position, their form is currently preventing what could be an easier task. Winning one of their last five, coupled with the absence of Didier Drogba means Saturday night could be a difficult fixture for the Impact.

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Houston, meanwhile, are stuck at the bottom of the Western Conference and to put it bluntly, deserve to be there. The club has struggled over the last two years and the departure of manager Owen Coyle mid-season wasn’t going to aid their efforts in making a surge up the standings.

Wade Barrett has come in and so far steadied a sinking ship but there is a lot of work to do to get this franchise back to the level it should be at. The club traded former captain Giles Barnes to Vancouver last week and so their strike force is all the weaker for it.

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The project at Houston has halted for the moment. Let’s hope they find stability and success sooner rather than later.

This will be the 12th all-time meeting between the two sides and their only clash this season. Houston won last year’s contest 3-0 and are looking to record a third-straight win over Saturday’s opponents.

Team News

Montreal Impact are only without two players through injury as Andres Romero and Wandrille Lefevre will miss the clash. However, star man Didier Drogba is suspended following his red card last weekend, so Dominic Oduro is expected to start in his place.

Houston Dynamo are definitely without DaMarcus Beasley and Tyler Deric through injury. Raul Rodriguez and Agus are both doubts but are fighting to be fit in time for Saturday’s contest.

Key Points

Montreal Impact’s last five: D/D/L/W/D

Houston Dynamo’s last five: W/D/L/D/D

Key Stat: Houston haven’t won away in MLS since July 2015 – a stretch of 19 matches.

Key Player: Ignacio Piatti – Montreal’s creator has been sensational thus far this season and will have to step up once more in Drogba’s absence. He has the quality to change a game in a flash and will relish the prospect of facing a Dynamo defence that has only kept one away clean sheet all season.

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Score Prediction

Montreal Impact 3-0 Houston Dynamo – Montreal are in the playoff places for a reason and have an abundance of creative talent. We expect them to dispose of Houston easily on Saturday, even without star striker Didier Drogba. Houston can’t seem to buy a win away from home and their luck doesn’t look likely to change here.