Home MLS Montreal Impact Montreal Impact: The pressure is off, it goes into Houston as the team with nothing to lose

Montreal Impact: The pressure is off, it goes into Houston as the team with nothing to lose

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The Montreal Impact has backed into the MLS playoffs.

The Impact needed one of three results to go its way Sunday. But both the New England Revolution and Houston Dynamo won their matches, leaving it up to the third and final game to decide if the Impact’s season would be over or not.

And, after surrendering the first goal of the game to the Chicago Fire’s Mike Magee, the New York Red Bulls roared back with five unanswered goals — based on the strength of three assists from Peguy Luyindula — and took the game 5-2.

Chicago’s loss allowed the Impact to cling onto the fifth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

As well, the fact that Marco Di Vaio (20 goals) is in the playoffs, while Magee (21 goals) isn’t, may influence the MVP vote.

But the Impact will have to go on the road to Houston for a midweek knockout game. The last time the Impact went to BBVA Compass Stadium, back on Oct. 4, Montreal lost 1-0. Ricardo Clark scored a sixth-minute goal and that was all the Dynamo would need.

Montreal played Houston twice at Stade Saputo, winning both by an aggregate score of 7-0. But those wins came before the Impact went into its two-month long swoon to end the season, and it feels like Montreal is a different team than the one we saw in the spring and the summer.

Montreal won just one out of its last eight MLS matches. In the space of two months, it went from being at the top of the Eastern Conference to wondering if the playoffs would be in the club’s future at all.

No one outside of Montreal will like the Impact’s chance in Houston. But, maybe that works well for the Impact — it goes from the team that’s had a ton of pressure on it over the last couple of months to a team that has nothing to lose.

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