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Preview: Fire take on Impact Saturday in Montreal

Montreal Impact vs. Chicago Fire
2018 MLS Regular Season — Week 25

Stade Saputo — Montreal
Saturday, August 18
 6:30 pm CT
WATCH: ESPN+

The Montreal Impact will try and stay above the playoff line in the Eastern Conference when they host the Chicago Fire Saturday night at Stade Saputo.

The Impact are coming off a 1-1 draw at Real Salt Lake, while the Fire dropped their seventh straight league game, losing at home to the New York Red Bulls, 1-0.

This is the second meeting this season, with the Chicago Fire winning 1-0 at Toyota Park on May 9. with Kevin Ellis scoring the winner one minute from full time.

Montreal Impact

For the second straight game, and their third time in four games without a win, Montreal (9-13-3) played to a draw, tying Real Salt Lake, 1-1, at Rio Tinto Stadium last Saturday night.

Joao Plata put RSL in front in the 26th minute, but Jukka Raitala leveled with a screamer from outside the 18-yard box in the 55th minute.

“Of course we would have liked to get the three points, and the players showed it, because we had a good second half," coach Rémi Garde said. “We have created many opportunities throughout the match. If we had a little more efficiency, we could have gone for these three points, but we must be satisfied with this point.”

  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: D - Chris Duvall
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: M - David Choiniere (ankle surgery), D - Chris Duvall (calf injury)

Projected Starting XI
(4-3-3, right to left)
GK: Evan Bush — Jukka Raitala, Victor Cabrera, Rudy Camacho, Daniel Lovitz — Ken Krolicki, Samuel Piette, Saphir Taider — Alejandro Silva, Matteo Mancosu, Ignacio Piatti

Chicago Fire

The effort was there, but the goals were not, and Chicago (6-14-5) lost yet again, dropping a 1-0 decision to the New York Red Bulls at Toyota Park last Saturday night.

Bradley Wright-Phillips scored the lone goal in the 55th minute, becoming the first player in league history to score at least 15 goals in five consecutive seasons. Meanwhile, Fire coach Veljko Paunovic said there’s no quit in his side despite the franchise-worst skid.

“Yesterday in this room, we had a meeting where we all committed that we will play all the games until the end giving our best,” Paunovic said. “No matter what happens, we will give our best. I saw the change today and I think not only the attitude, the focus, the urgency, organization and that look in the eyes of our guys was different. Nine games, nine finals, we’ll give, in everyone of them, our best. For sure we’re going to change this curse of losing games.”

  • Suspended: None
  • Suspended after next caution: None
  • International duty: None
  • Injury Report: OUT: D - Matt Polster (MCL surgery), GK - Patrick McLain (hamstring injury), M/D - Diego Campos (left MCL injury), D - Jonathan Campbell (left adductor injury)

Projected Starting XI
(3-4-2-1, right to left)
GK: Richard Sanchez — Johan Kappelhof, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Brandon Vincent — Nico Hasler, Dax McCarty, Brandt Bronico, Jorge Corrales — Aleksandar Katai, Raheem Edwards — Nemanja Nikolic

All-Time Series

  • Overall: Montreal Impact 6 wins, 22 goals … Chicago Fire 6 wins, 24 goals … 5 draws
  • At Montreal: Impact 5 wins, 14 goals … Fire 2 wins, 10 goals … 2 draws
  • Last meeting at Montreal: Montreal Impact 0, Chicago Fire 1 (Sept. 2, 2017)

Officials

Referee: Baldomero Toledo
Assistant Referees: Brian Dunn, Andrew Bigelow
4th Official: Rubiel Vazquez
VAR: Geoff Gamble

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