It's time to not dwell on all the bad things that occurred in yesterday's game, and believe me, there were a number of them. We could focus our minds on poor Cameron Porter, who has done so much good in his very short time with the Montreal Impact, and now this.
What a tragically unlucky thing to happen to a great kid. The Oduro injury is less troubling, but I'm hoping it's nothing too serious. In the last game and a half, I have really liked what I've seen from him.
As far as Hassoun Camara is concerned, I'm really tired of seeing that guy on the pitch. There's no place for the kind of boneheaded decisions he's made in the last year and a half. To put your team in that sort of position is absolutely inexcusable.
But hey, didn't I say stop dwelling on all the negatives?!?!
Seriously though, there were a ton of good things to take away from this match. A 0-0 draw would have been a decent enough result even without the sending off. To walk away with a point, and one I thought they really earned, is a huge positive for the club.
My play of the game occurred in the 72nd minute, where the Impact really showed how far they've come as a team, cohesion-wise, in such a short period of time. Eric Alexander won the ball back in midfield, and what followed was extremely impressive. The Impact (specifically Alexander, Reo-Coker, MacInerny, and Romero) pieced together a string of quick passes under duress that ended in a ball to the back post that Toia came very close to getting a boot onto.
Despite being down a man, Montreal displayed confidence and creativity on the ball that you probably would never have seen last year. To me it shows a team with a real belief that they can win any game, no matter the circumstances.
Coach: Frank Klopas- 8/10
Considering the situation he was in (no Piatti, Soumare, Duka and Donadel to start), I thought he fielded the right lineup. IMFC used their speed down the wings effectively, and tactically the defense and midfield were solidly set up. Obviously the team lost a bit of steam when Porter went down, but again, the pressing style that Klopas has been employing was very effective.
K: Evan Bush - 8.5/10
For me, this was Evan Bush' best performance to date, and I'm eating crow right now because he's looking more and more like a starter out there. Credit goes to the defense as well, but his decision-making and aggressiveness has been much better this year. Was alert and handled the pressure excellently in the box all day long. Two thumbs up.
CB: Laurent Ciman - 8.5/10
Ciman will be missed in their next match against Orlando. He made a number of key tackles, some of them game-saving, and just has a knack of knowing when to press up defensively and take chances. I have to give credit to the coaches on the training ground, because there has clearly been a message sent to guys like Donadel and today, Mallace, of knowing how to react when Ciman moves up. Smartly, the Impact have built their defensive posture around Ciman's style of play, and it's working out beautifully.
CB: Victor Cabrera - 7/10
I would have given Cabrera a higher mark but he was a little off in the first half. He seemed to have trouble adapting to the field, and turfed the ball a couple of times. He held on to it too long as well, and lost the ball up the field as a result. Played much better in the second half though, and saved the Impact on a couple of occasions in the box with well-timed tackles.
LB: Donny Toia - 8.5/10
Can't say enough about this kid. His work rate was excellent and his confidence on the ball in dicey situations was impressive. The Impact needed a huge defensive effort when Camara was sent off, and he came through in spades.
RB: Hassoun Camara -- 4/10
Started the game well enough, making a big tackle in the box to prevent a scoring chance as well as some really nice balls up the pitch to Oduro. But again, as he showed last year, his lack of discipline and more to the point, lack of composure, put the Impact in a brutal spot with two yellows and subsequent sending off. If he can't get his head on straight, he simply should not be on the pitch.
DM: Nigel Reo-Coker 8.5/10
Reo-Coker impressed me to no end today. Unlike Camara, who almost threw the game away because of his lack of composure, Reo-Coker took this game by the horns and didn't let go till the very end. He played his role of a holding midfielder distributor to a tee today, making accurate and decisive passes all over the pitch. He seems to be gaining confidence within Klopas' system by the day, brilliantly accepting his role as counter attack specialist. It was my hope that defensive midfield would be where we would improve leaps and bounds this year, and I've not been disappointed.
DM: Calum Mallace - 7.5/10
Callum had a ton of work to do today defensively, and you got to be impressed with how he faired. Throughout the game, even before they were down a man, Mallace was excellent for the most part in front of the back four. He was his usual active self defensively, pressing up aggressively on attackers outside the box. Though Reo-Coker did more offensively, Mallace was effective enough, making simple, quick passes that were almost always positive.
LM: Maxim Tissot 8/10
I really liked what I saw from Tissot. I thought his energy on the ball was infectious down the wing, and I think it shows how well they're developing players in the academy. As far as work rate is concerned, I think he proved without a doubt that he can play 90 minutes when needed, as he was willing and able right up to the final whistle. Was also impressed by his confidence on the ball and his ability to put shots on target.
CAM: Eric Alexander - 7.5/10
Even without Ambroise Ayongo on board, Alexander showed today that IMFC did more than okay in their trade with the Red Bulls. Though not as creative as Piatti on the ball, he showcased his versatility on the pitch, tracking back defensively with ease. Offensively he was quick with the ball and intelligent, pinging the ball out in to open space for the forwards to latch onto.
RM: Dominic Oduro 6.5/10
It was looking to be another good outing for Oduro before he took a tumble early in the second half and never really recovered. He once again was effective taking players on 1 v 1 on the wing, and really should have opened the score late in the first half. Wasn't as implicated in the action as the other offensive players, but a good showing all the same.
Striker: Cameron Porter - 7/10
Before the injury, Porter was a real danger up front, making runs and finding open space in and around the New England backline. Unfortunately he never had a chance to really put his stamp on the game.
Striker: Jack McInerney - 6.5/10
He doesn't have the same work rate as Porter, but I thought the effort was there today. Though he lacked the pace that the rest of the Impact frontline possessed, I thought he nonetheless showed quality on the ball, making smart little passes when called upon. Still, what he's lacking right now for me is his work off the ball, specifically his ability to make runs and find open space.
RM: Andrés Romero - 7.5/10
Was this guy injured? From what I saw yesterday, he looked like he had never missed a game. In roughly 35 minutes of action he showed all the quality we've come to expect from the Argentinian, specifically his work rate, which was needed considering the circumstances of being down a man. His defensive coverage was impressive, as he tracked back on numerous occasions to get the ball out of danger. His excellent dribbling skills were also on display, which is very promising for upcoming fixtures.
CM: Jérémy Gagnon-Laparé - 6/10
Came on too late to really get a read on his play, but not making any critical errors in what was a tough situation to come into should garner some kind commendation.