Coach: Frank Klopas – 7/10
Considering the injuries he’s had to cope with, Klopas has managed to get the most out of his players of late, specifically on offence, where the attacking players are working well in a more pass-heavy, team-first setup. He has stuck with the 4-2-3-1 and it is starting to pay off. I would love to know if he got McInerney to play closer to the midfield or if it was the player’s initiative, but either way its working well. Still has a lot of work to do defensively, but I think things will turn around once there is more stability in the back four.
K: Evan Bush – 8/10
I will be the first to admit that I went into this season without a lot of confidence in Bush as the starting keeper, but he’s made me eat my words. He was always a good shot stopper, as he displayed with his game-saving effort in the dying minutes against FCD. What has really caught my eye though, has been the vast improvements he’s made in ball distribution and anticipating when to run out to catch or punch a ball. He’s now much more of a complete keeper, and he’s transformed into a calming presence in net.
CB: Laurent Ciman – 7.5/10
Ciman played well once again, having to do more heavy lifting than usual with a less than match-fit backline to play with. Was victimized by Castillo once or twice, but that was fairly par for the course, as the Dallas winger was a terror on the pitch. Performed many of his usual well-timed tackles, and was easily the best defender on the day.
CB: Bakary Soumare – 5.5/10
Soumare was the shakier of the two CB’s, on both marking and headers in the box. Considering he towered over all the players on the pitch, you’d think he’d win headers more convincingly, but that wasn’t the case. When you throw in the fact that he’s not super mobile, I found he was a bit of a liability against the high flying Dallas squad, and I think the Impact would have been better off with Lefèvre in his stead.
LB: Ambroise Oyongo – 5/10
Making his very first appearance of the season, Oyongo was forced to play the full 90, and it was probably a bit too much to ask. Had difficulty adjusting to player’s movements down the wing, and was caught out by a runner on a few occasions in the first half. Started the second half much brighter, doing really well from an offensive standpoint in particular. Played a big role in creating the Impact’s 2nd goal, keeping the ball well down the wing before feeding the ball up the pitch to Duka. Struggled mightily down the stretch with defensive coverage in the box, but I’m assuming that’s down to lack of practice and match fitness.
RB: Eric Miller 7/10
Started the game really well, making a number of good reads and interceptions in the defensive half. Did well to keep Castillo at bay for the most part, so it was frustrating to see him come off in the 36th minute due to injury.
DM: Marco Donadel 7/10
Played another solid game in defensive midfield, timing up a number of good tackles/interceptions, and moved the ball quickly and efficiently around the park. Was booked for some fairly innocuous but extremely avoidable unsportsmanlike conduct (kicking the ball back too hard at a player), and ended up getting removed from the game too soon as a result.
DM: Calum Mallace – 6.5/10
Has started the last few games as the more defensive of the DM’s, and this one wasn’t his best. It’s not really a knock on him though; Dallas play a similar style of offense to that of FC América, and it really forces the defense into dicey situations in the box. Mallace had difficulty containing Perez on a big scoring chance late in the game, and he could have shown more composure clearing the ball in the later stages.
LM: Dilly Duka 7/10
Duka may not be the biggest winger out there, but he more than makes up for it with his tricky feet and skill on the ball. Wasn’t as implicated as his attacking counterparts, but still created a lot down the flank, using his good movement to force fouls and open up space for his teammates.
CAM: Nacho Piatti – 8/10
Piatti picked up where he left off against RSL, creating a goal and scoring one of his own in the win. He did revert back to his over-dribbling a bit too much, but had an effective game in that respect, drawing many fouls and nutmegging defenders with his smooth ball skills. Did pretty well on the defensive side of things, as he was very aggressive in winning back possession, but struggled along with his teammates in his own box with headers.
RM: Andrés Romero – 8.5/10
Didn’t get on the scoresheet, but to me he was the best player on the pitch for the Impact. Created the Impact’s first goal by drawing a penalty off of a superb nutmeg in the box, followed by an excellent effort to position his body between the ball and the defender, forcing the Dallas player into the foul.
What was most impressive though was Romero’s defensive effort on Castillo, however. It’s not a coincidence that there were a ton of chances created by Dallas down the right side after Romero was subbed out of the game. He did a fantastic job of tracking back and forth down the right flank, created a slew of chances for his own team, while breaking up opportunities by the opponents’ side.
Striker: Jack McInerney 8/10
The young American has really come into his own in recent games, scoring timely goals as well as creating numerous chances for his teammates. He seems to have figured out his role as striker on the team, playing more like a forward in a false nine, often dropping back into the midfield to start an attack.
Subs: Donny Toia, Eric Alexander, Patrice Bernier
Toia had to come in much earlier than was expected due to the Miller injury, and played fairly well, considering he hadn’t seen any playing time in over three weeks. Made a goal-saving block in the box late in the game, and showed really good strength to bump players off the ball without taking a foul. Alexander came into the game for Donadel and immediately was beaten by Diaz in midfield that resulted in a chance, and largely struggled from a defensive standpoint in the last few moments of the match. Looked better offensively, where he created some good chemistry with Duka and McInerney. Like Alexander, Bernier did really well when the Impact had possession, holding up the play well, but had his difficulties covering the more active Dallas players in the Impact’s box.
- Piatti did well to fake going right and shoot left after last week’s penalty miss off of the right post.
- Fabian Castillo showed he was superhuman in the late stages of the game when he ran past Ambroise Oyongo to recover a through ball in his own half before turning around and racing all the way back into the Impact box to create a chance.
- Impact struggled on corners and set pieces all game long, not just in those final 15 minutes of hell.
- Bush had one of his best games of the season, making 7 saves. Montréal conceded 15 corners in the game to just 2 of their own, but also amassed 36 clearances.
- Montréal conceded 15 corners in the game to just 2 of their own, but also amassed 36 clearances.