Columbus Crew SC vs Montreal Impact: Match Preview

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HARRISON, NJ - APRIL 22: Columbus Crew forward Federico Higuain (10) during the second half of the Major League Soccer game between the New York Red Bulls and the Columbus Crew FC on April 22, 2017 at Rde Bull Arena in Harrison, NJ. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

After going 1-2-0 on their three-game homestand, Columbus now travels on the road for the next three games. Their first stop is Quebec, Canada as they face a struggling Montreal Impact. Nine of Columbus’ next 13 games are on the road.

Columbus Starts Three-Game Road Trip Against Montreal Impact

Columbus vs Toronto

In the last match, Columbus hosted Trillium Cup rivals Toronto FC. Columbus would get on the board in the first half with a Federico Higuain penalty kick goal. Late in the second half, Toussaint Ricketts helped Toronto come from behind and grab three points on the road with his second half brace. Columbus ended their three-game home stand with a 1-2-0 record.

In their last five matches, Columbus has managed to secure six points. A 2-1 win over Toronto, and a 2-0 win over the Revolution. Columbus look to regain consistency heading into their road trip.

Columbus currently sits in fourth in the Eastern Conference.

DC United vs Montreal

The Montreal Impact are back at home after their road win against DC United. Ballou Jean-Yves Tabla, the Montreal homegrown, secured the three road points for the Impact after his 13th-minute strike. 

Montreal has earned a respectable eight points in their last five matches. A big road point came in their 3-3 draw against the Philadelphia Union a couple of weeks ago. Currently, the Impact sits in 10th in the East.

Key Players

A key player of Columbus to keep your eye on is the Maestro himself, Federico Higuain. With 41 goals and 39 assists in his career with the Black and Gold, the Maestro looks to get back to his old 2015 ways. With his ability and technique on the ball, Higuain is the playmaker that Columbus has always needed.

For the home side, Ignacio Piatti is the man. Along with Pipa, Piatti is the most valuable player to Montreal. Not only can he make plays on the ball, he’s a dynamic goal scorer as well. If the Crew SC midfield can’t contain the magic that he creates, Columbus is in for a treat when he attacks the goal.

Penalty Kick Incident

Noteworthy, a very significant incident happened last year when these two teams met. It was the penalty dispute between Federico Higuain and former Crew SC striker Kei Kamara.

Columbus, up 3-1 in the 52nd minute of play, earned a penalty kick. Kamara, sitting on a hat-trick was eager to take the penalty when Higuain also stepped up. The two had a long talking before then captain Michael Parkhurst came to break up the two. Higuain would eventually convert the penalty to give Crew SC a 4-1 lead. However, Columbus would see the lead vanish as Montreal fought back to earn a point with a 4-4 draw.

Head coach and Gregg Berhalter said afterward, “We have two very great guys who are capable of taking penalties. I should’ve made a decision.”

Prediction

Both teams are looking to get back on their good side. Columbus, having recently blown a 1-0 lead look to have a turnaround game against the Impact. Meanwhile, Montreal is wanting to get back to their winning ways, like they were last year when they made the Eastern Conference Finals. This match could lean in favor of the Impact due to the great attacking members they have. Both teams will play a very hard fought game, but it appears the Impact would take this game.

Montreal Impact 2-0 Columbus Crew SC

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