Montreal Impact Premature Pre-Season Depth: Forwards

Hunter Martin

What looked to be the club's biggest issue when the 2012 season started, scoring goals was not that foreign of a concept for the 2012 expansion club.

Forty Five Goals Scored in 2012 ranked Montreal 9th in that category in Major League Soccer.

Team Leaders in Goals Scored

Patrice Bernier : 9 Goals in 27 Games (25 Started Games) . 6 of those goals were from the penalty spot (thank you to @PaulRonca for the reminder)

Sanna Nyassi : 6 Goals in 28 Games (17 Started Games)

Marco Di Vaio : 5 Goals in 17 Games (16 Started Games)

Felipe Martins : 4 Goals in 30 Games (30 Started Games)

Davy Arnaud : 4 Goals in 33 Games (31 Started Games)

Bernardo Corradi : 4 Goals in 11 Games (7 Started Games)

Andrew Wenger : 4 Goals in 23 Games (7 Started Games)

The goal distribution is widespread with your best scorer being a central midfielder in Patrice Bernier. Among the top scorers (over 4 goals), 3 out of 6 are midfielders and a 4th player is not with the club anymore (Corradi).

This leaves as actual strikers/CF: Andrew Wenger, Marco Di Vaio and Sanna Nyassi. Add to the mix, Argentinian striker Andres Romero who was just announced coming to Montreal on loan. Even Sanna Nyassi is an x-factor as he mixes the winger/Side Midfielder/striker role making him versatile but not in the mold of that prototypical CF.

Center Back or Center Forward?

That was the question before and during the 2012 MLS SuperDraft for Andrew Wenger. Jesse Marsch made the choice when he drafted Wenger and the Duke graduate is a center forward. The 2nd year player scored 4 goals in 23 games played but only started in 7 of those.

As much as he is still young, Wenger still needs playing time. Accumulating crucial minutes in MLS will only give him more experience. Though. Marco Schällibaum seems to be keeping the 1 striker-formation, switching between 4-2-3-1, 4-3-3 and 4-1-4-1, with a potential overhaul on servicing the strikers from the sides.

It was obvious that the Impact was going to play around and for Marco Di Vaio. It would still be a shame not to see a "permanent" Wenger-Di Vaio duo , a partnership that could accelerate Wenger's learning curve.

Let's not forget that the Impact has had success with the 4-2-3-1 before Di Vaio. Nyassi and Wenger were respectively the lone striker in Montrea'sl 4-1 win over the Seattle Sounders and 5-2 win over the Houston Dynamo.

The Build Up

A substantial amount of offensive buildup will be coming from the sides. That sector was identified as being sub-par and that is good news for the forwards of the club. Being less predictable will free up the last third of the pitch, hence giving more options to the team. More options for the team means more solutions for the forwards and more difficulties for the club's opponents to defend.

Within that build up, versatile offensive player, Sanna Nyassi, represents that joker card that combines speed and more than decent finishing. He has shown to be more effective off the bench and his versatility will leave options for the club, as a foward or a winger/midfielder.

Newest Additions: Andres Romero The Versatile

At this point, we do not really know much about the actual value of the Argentinean forward. But his status as a player on loan and not in a tryout should prove that he is not coming to Montreal as a tourist.

As per Sporting Director , Nick De Santis, Romero is versatile as a forward/winger (it's all about the sides people). His experience playing in First Division in Argentina (little playing time in Brazil) might give him a head start in the depth chart, just behind Marco Di Vaio. He will represent an additional offensive option off the bench or when playing with a starting XI, on the wings or up front.

About Romero

Now it's up to him to acclimatize to a new style of soccer. I think he's going to bring a lot of speed and good technical qualities that will help make this team better. -- Nick De Santis

Forwards
Marco Di Vaio
Andres Romero
Sanna Nyassi
Andrew Wenger
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