Impact loses a hard-fought battle 1-0 to NYCFC


ST.PETERSBURG, Florida – The Montreal Impact lost 1-0 to New York City FC, Wednesday night at Al Lang Stadium, in St.Petersburg, in its first preseason game of the Rowdies Suncoast Invitational.

NYCFC forward Patrick Mullins scored the game-winning goal in the 75th minute when he took advantage of a shot from Mikey Lopez that was initially blocked by the Impact defence. Jumping on the rebound, Mullins’ shot was slightly deflected before crossing the goal line, leaving no chance for Impact goalkeeper Eric Kronberg.

With his team playing its third game of preseason camp - its first in a regular 90-minute format - Montreal Impact head coach Mauro Biello fielded different lineups for each half of the game.

“I gave the opportunity to some players to stand out and earn their spot and minutes,” said Montreal Impact head coach Mauro Biello. “We still have work to do. We gave too many chances to the other team.”

Midfielder Marco Donadel had the best scoring chance of the first half when, at the 23rd minute, his free kick from 30 meters out curled on the post, to the right of goalkeeper Eirik Johansen.

A few minutes later, NYCFC responded when David Villa hammered a shot off the crossbar from inside the box (30th minute).

At the 41st minute, Impact SuperDraft pick Michael Salazar got two great back-to-back chances within seconds but both were stopped by a fully-extended Johansen.

“This was a very humbling experience and I did the best I could,” said Salazar. “It was one of the bigger games I’ve played in my career and I hope to improve from here. I’ve learned a lot watching players like Drogba over the years and I try to translate it into my game.”

Then right before the end of the first half, forward Cameron Porter was frustrated by the NYCFC goalkeeper.

In the 54th minute, Kronberg, who made key saves throughout the game, made his best stop on Thomas McNamara on a point-blank shot.

“We created several chances in both halves and it’s unfortunate to lose by one goal,” added Kronberg. “The young guys are getting their time and playing at a high level. I thought the defence played pretty well throughout the game.”

A few moments later, Johansen blocked a powerful shot from Anthony Jackson-Hamel, by tipping it just wide of his net.

In the dying seconds of the match, Impact midfielder Eric Alexander thought he had levelled the score by beating Johansen to his left with a low shot, but the play was called offside. 

The Impact will play its next game of the tournament against D.C. United, this Saturday at 4pm, at Al Lang Stadium. The game will once again be streamed live on

MTL – GK-Eric Kronberg; D-Maxim Tissot (Ambroise Oyongo 46’), Wandrille Lefèvre (Laurent Ciman 46’), Victor Cabrera (Kyle Fisher 65’), Donny Toia; M-Marco Donadel (Jérémy Gagnon-Laparé 46’), Harry Shipp (Eric Alexander 46’), Calum Mallace (Patrice Bernier 46’, Louis Béland-Goyette* 80’), Michael Salazar (Kyle Bekker 46’), Johan Venegas (Romario Williams 46’); F-Cameron Porter (Anthony Jackson-Hamel 46’, Eric Verso* 86’)

2016 SuperDraft pick
*FC Montreal player

NYCFC – G-Eirik Johansen; D-Ronald Matarrita, Ethan White, Frederic Brillant (Jason Hernandez 68’), Andoni Iraola; M-Thomas McNamara (Kwadwo Poku 68’), Andrea Pirlo, Mix Diskerud (Mikey Lopez 68’); A-Tony Taylor, David Villa (Patrick Mullins 68’), Khiry Shelton


NYCFC – Mullins 75’