Jesse Marsch Archive

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Five years of coaching turmoil reflects poorly on Impact organization

Jesse Marsch PHOTO: MIKE WYMAN

Since 2008, four men have coached the Montreal Impact through the club’s final years of Div. 2 soccer and its 2012 debut in MLS. And Nick De Santis has held the job twice.

Coaching is never a stable job, but outside of Toronto FC, it’s hard to think of a club where the gaffer is on a more precarious perch than in Montreal. And no club wants to be mentioned in the same sentence as Toronto FC.

John Limniatis took this team to the quarters of the CONCACAF Champions League in 2008-2009, but didn’t last to see out the 2009 season. Marc Dos Santos took over and won the USL title in 2009, but a slow start to the 2011 NASL season brought the end to his tenure. De Santis came back as an interim coach, then Jesse Marsch came in for one MLS season.

Marsch and the Impact decided to part ways this weekend, and the hunt is on for the fifth coach since ’08.
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Coach Marsch, Impact agree to part ways

Jesse Marsch, left, and Joey Saputo address the media Saturday. PHOTO: MIKE WYMAN

Summoned to Saputo Stadium on short notice, media members assembled this morning and were told that head coach Jesse Marsch was no longer with the organization.

Team President, Joey Saputo, already on the record as being satisfied with Marsch’s efforts over the team’s inaugural season, sat alongside Technical Director Nick De Santis and the former coach for the announcement, saying that it was neither a firing or a resignation but rather “an amicable parting of ways”.

“Although the decision was a tough one to make it was made mutually for the benefit of the club. We told you on Wednesday that we were happy with Jesse’s work this year and we are still satisfied today,” Saputo reiterated.

“I think that naming Jesse as head coach for the team’s first MLS season was the right decision to take. Jesse has always had the club at heart and gave his maximum towards helping the team achieve success. I’d like to thank him for his involvement and commitment to the Montreal Impact. While we have the same long-term objectives for this organization we realized over the past few weeks that we do not share the same philosophy on how to get there,” he continued.
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Marsch: Impact’s first season “wasn’t good enough”

Jesse Marsch

While the Montreal Impact’s top brass were holding their post-mortem on the 2012 MLS campaign, the players and coaching staff were on the pitch at Saputo Stadium, going through their paces in preparation for next Monday’s departure for Italy.

The team will train and play against Fiorentina and Bologna, both Serie A sides and the latter the club for whom striker Marco Di Vaio played before crossing the Atlantic this spring.

Their workout concluded, head coach Jesse Marsch and a number of his players recapped the Impact’s season and looked into the team’s immediate future.

“I think that the energy, effort and commitment that everyone showed from the top to the bottom was at a very high level and something to be very proud of but, in the end it’s a results-oriented business and for me, especially considering the way the season ended, it wasn’t good enough,” declared the first-year gaffer.
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Impact brain trust reflects on successes and mistakes in 2012 season

Joey Saputo, left, and Nick De Santis PHOTO: MIKE WYMAN

The Montreal Impact’s upper management team, President Joey Saputo, VP Richard Legendre and Technical Director Nick De Santis, met with the media this morning to conduct the team’s first MLS post-mortem and all involved pronounced the patient alive and generally healthy but in need of some fine tuning to thrive in its second season. An upcoming overseas trip could serve as a possible prescription.

“The high point that I’m going to remember from this season is that we reached our objective for ticket sales with an average attendance of almost 23,000 spectators per game, good for third in the league,” said Saputo. “We played four of our last six games to full houses and the average attendance averaged 19,656 during those six games. We had two record crowds of over 58,000 and 60,000 at Olympic Stadium.

“The extraordinary atmosphere at our games is thanks to the exceptional support we get from our fans and has made us a very difficult team to play against at home.”

He then identified a number of things that he did not want to see repeated in the team’s second season.

“We do not want to be close to the playoffs, we want to be in the playoffs. We want to reach our season-ticket subscription objective. We do not want to experience a dip in attendance like we had in our first game at Saputo Stadium. We do not want to leave points on the pitch by allowing so many late-game goals,” he said.
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ACC seeding still wide open after Impact drops MLS finale to Revs

Jesse Marsch

The New England Revolution came to town looking to salvage a bit of pride and avoid being swept by a first-year team in their season series, but the Impact had something more tangible to play for: The top spot among Canadian pro teams and along with it the right to face FC Edmonton in the opening round of next year’s Amway Canadian Championship.

When the final whistle blew, the New England side had achieved its objective, leaving town with a 1-0 victory in a game where it was outplayed by their hosts from the opening whistle but, like it has so often in their inaugural MLS campaign, Montreal gave up a late goal, leaving points on the table that they needed and, as a result, are dependent on Real Salt Lake to handle the Vancouver Whitecaps later Saturday evening. Both the Whitecaps and Impact are tied at 42 points each.

Playing its last game at high pace, Montreal outworked, outplayed, outchanced but failed to outscore its opponents, not the first time this fate has befallen them this year.

“We did enough to deserve a win. We just couldn’t make a play, which is incredibly frustrating at the end,” said Impact head coach Jesse Marsch. Read the rest of this entry »

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Draw eliminates Impact from playoff contention

Alessandro Nesta: Taken to the cleaners on Houston’s opening goal

The official “wait till next year” mantra can now be uttered throughout the Montreal Impact camp.

The Impact’s thin playoff hopes came to an end Saturday, as it and the Houston Dynamo, which has not lost at home this season, played to a 1-1 draw that neither team wanted.

The Dynamo needed a win to consolidate its fifth-place spot; but now, the Dynamo are just two points up on the Columbus Crew, which plays Sunday. The Impact needed a win to stay in the playoff race.

So, with the teams tied, the final 10 minutes (and three minutes of stoppage time) were played by two teams who EACH looked like it was down a goal.

It was a frantic finale which saw Impact coach Jesse Marsch receive his walking papers for protesting after striker Sanna Nyassi was ruled not to have been fouled by Dynamo defender Bobby Boswell in the box.
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Scoreless draw puts serious dent in Impact’s playoff hopes

Jesse Marsch

After playing Sporting Kansas City to a scoreless tie in its second-last home game, one that saw head coach Jesse Marsch flood the pitch with offensive players on the hopes of burying the ball in the mesh, the Montreal Impact is not mathematically out of the playoff picture but hopes are rapidly disappearing over the horizon.

“I wasn’t a math major in college,“ said Marsch when asked what the draw meant with regard to his team’s postseason aspirations. “So I’m not sure. It starts to feel as if the points are working against us. We have to keep an eye on the results around the league. We know we’re on the outside looking in. It’s not a great situation for us but we’re not stopping. As long as there’s a little bit of light at the end of the tunnel this team is going to give it everything it’s got just like it has every day all season long. For sure we’re not stopping now.”
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Fatigued Crew find enough in the tank to shock Impact

Chad Marshall

The Montreal Impact could not take advantage of a fatigued Columbus Crew team.

With just 10 minutes left on the clock and holding a 1-0 lead, the Impact couldn’t hang on against the Crew. Reigning Player of the Week Federico Higuain set up Chad Marshall’s equalizer in the 80th minute, and Emilio Renteria’s winner in stoppage time, as the Crew put a dagger into Montreal’s playoff hopes with a 2-1 win.

The Impact will wonder how the central defence, knowing it was holding a vital lead late in the game, could allow itself to be beaten in the air twice in the space of 12 minutes.

Renteria was left wide open in the penalty area to direct Higuain’s cross over Impact keeper Troy Perkins in the 92nd minute. And Higuain was given acres of space down the left side in which to engineer a cross, as veteran Alessandro Nesta inexplicably decided to lay off rather than take away the Argentine’s space on the wing. It was a massive error in judgment from Nesta, and it allowed Higuain the freedom to whip in the ball for the winning goal.

In the 80th, the Crew equalized. Higuain knocked a free kick into the Impact penalty area, where Crew central defender Chad Marshall, who moved up into the attack, beat Impact defender Nelson Rivas in the air to nod the ball home.
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Bernier’s brace helps Impact power to fifth win in a row

Patrice Bernier

The Montreal Impact kept its slim postseason hopes alive, defeating fifth-place DC United 3-0 in front of a full house of 20,011 fans at Saputo Stadium, where the capacity has increased in each recent home game as more seats are installed, and drawing to within a single point ofthe fifth and last playoff berth on the MLS Eastern Conference table.

Speaking in French to open his post-game remarks, as he usually does when thing go well for his men, head coach Jesse Marsch:

“I spoke with the players after the game. I’m very happy for them because they worked hard, worked a lot, and worked very well. They deserved it. I’m happy, for the players and everything they’ve put into it,” he said before injecting a note of caution. “But, as we’ve said all year, it’s one game and now we have to look forward to next week.”
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Suspensions hit both the Whitecaps and Impact

Gershon Koffie

Suspensions will force both Montreal Impact coach Jesse Marsch and Whitecaps’ boss Martin Rennie to make some adjustments in the coming weeks.

For the Whitecaps, midfielder Gershon Koffie will miss this Saturday’s Cascadia Cup derby match with Portland. The MLS Disciplinary Committee found that Koffie, who received a yellow for a late-second-half challenge on Sounder Andy Rose in Saturday’s 2-0 loss to Seattle, should have received a red on that play. So, the midfielder will have to sit.

Koffie’s studs were up very high on Rose when he made the challenge. But Whitecaps fans, who found out that midfield star Barry Robson was to be suspended for the Seattle match just hours before kickoff, may feel like their team is being picked on. Why? No supplementary discipline was handed out to Sounder Eddie Johnson, who struck Whitecap Carlyle Mitchell in the face, or to Sounder Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, who looked to have stamped on Vancouver striker Darren Mattocks. MLS reviews all calls, so infractions need not produce yellow cards in order to be reviewed.
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