South Couch Report – Montreal v Toronto (Playoff Edition)

Montreal Impact as the Manic

Montreal Impact as the Manic

Guys, we’re finally gonna do it!

Now that we’re about to lose our #playoffVirginity, let’s hope they shoot early, and often.  Let’s not let anyone go home disappointed.

Years of mediocrity culminates to a one-off game at Montreal midweek.


At least Vic Rauter is there working the sidelines.  Voice like butter.  Like triple churned butter made by monks who took a vow of silence and comes in a silken box.

On to the match!

1’ – Toledo… we meet again.

3’ – Findley gets the ball outside the box. Turns around, takes a touch, and fires it back.

4’ – Piatti side steps his marker, fires a low ball forcing a diving save from Konopka

6’ – @kzknowles squees somewhere in a theatre viewing party over the short corner.

8’ – everyone shut the hell up, Vic is talking… damn audio difficulties!

9’ – Giovinco somehow gets a break down the right side, some good marking prevents an earlier shot from a better position, but the next touch is a shot, forcing Bush to make a stop.

11’ – Konopka gets extension on a cross to just push the ball out of Drogba’s trajectory.  Goal saved.  Well done.

13’ – I’m more scared of Piatti than I am of Giovinco scoring.  Mostly because of the defenders marking each of them.

15’ – Osorio is introduced to Donadel for tonight.  Free kick from 25 yards out and Giovinco and finds some cute flick ons, but Bradley is found offside.

17’ – Piatti gets through on goal, Konopka comes up big with a save down the left side.

18’ – GOAL – well that’s some carving, Piatti threads a ball behind Williams and Patrice Bernier slides it cooly.  Yes, autocorrect didn’t fix that, it was Bernier.

20’ – Findley is down!  SUB!  SUB NOW!!!!!  SUUUUUB!!!!!

21’ – No substitution.  Boo Greg.  Boo.

22’ – Piatti is getting away with everything, but Kantari stops him on a break with an assist from Jackson.

24’ – Drogba limps the first time.  Good to start early with the theatrics.

26’ – Vic is now talking… everyone shut the hell up.  Ahhhh, that’s Canadian footie… if we did a fundraiser to pay for Vic Rauter to record our “Fagundez”’s, would anyone chip in?

29’ – Drogba hobbles back onto the pitch after acting for on the sideline for over 3 minutes.  Committed to his craft.

31’ – Well done Williams.  Given that he got owned twice in the same move, he recovered well enough to prevent the shot with a slide tackle.

34’ – GOAL – Well done Williams… and Kantari.  He slides on the turf after a bad pass and Piatti takes advantage of the screw-up, gets the ball around Konopka and inside the net, far left post.

Time for a defensive sub?  Or any sub?

37’ – JDV says take off Findley, but for a reason that isn’t mine.

39’ – GOAL – There is soooo much “holy shit” in this goal, it’s crazy.  Duka finds Bernier who’s shot is denied.  Bernier gets the ball from the rebound, settles and chips SEVEN RED SHIRTS to find an UNMARKED DROGBA who buries it.  Robbie Findley has a good long look at what he was supposed to do standing a few feet behind Didier.

41’ – Everyone, shut the hell up again… Vic is talking.  Speculates 20+ combinations in the back four all season long.

45+1’ – Giovinco gets the ball in a 1-2 with Bradley in the penalty area and Ciman executes a perfect tackle to sweep the problem away.

Half-Time mood : euthanize this one.  It’s looks pretty done.

46’ – SUB – Zavaleta comes on for Kantari.

51’ – Free kick from Giovinco loops over and forces Bush to make a low diving save.  Ensuing scramble was nothing like the Bernier one from the third goal, so that was it.

55’ – Bradley goes for glory.  I guess we need that.  Now everyone shut the fuck up… Vic is talking.  Vanney wants the pace to be picked up.  Good call Greg.  Down by three.  Strong stance.

56’ – Cheyrou goes for a tackle, gets the ball but comes up worse for wear.

59’ – Vic with the good point about Montreal’s DP signings.  If I’m dying, I wanna hear it from Vic first.

61’ – You ever get that feeling that you don’t believe if the opposition will score, but when?  This right now.

64’ – Findley gets sent into the right side of goal from a cute pass from Osorio, can’t get to it for anything meaningful, but goes out for a corner.  And nothing comes from that either.

70’ – Morrow does a solid job of marking Drogba, stopping a free goal, no doubt.

70’ – SUB – Delgado is coming on for Osorio

72’ – SUB – Gomez comes on for IT’S TOO FUCKING LATE GREG.

75’ – Bernier slots it onto Piatti who has a go and fires just wide.

77’ – In a poetic slap in the face, Patrice Bernier, a legend, makes way for Kyle Bekker.  Kyle.  Bekker.  Toronto has won nothing tonight.  If there was ever a metaphorical middle finger to be flipped, this is it.

78’ – Giovinco “de Guzman”’s it.  This is what it’s come to.

79’ – Piatti off the post.

82’ – Great, fireworks.  Can’t wait to see the penalties imposed on those supporters…

87’ – YELLOW – Delgado takes out Oduro.

2 minutes of extra time

90+1’ – Bekker nearly becomes legend/pariah by taking a pass from Oduro and curling it past Konopka, but just wide of the far post.

Full Time : Montreal 3, Toronto 0

Man of the Match : Piatti.  Name me anyone else who was vaguely closer.

Goat of the Game : Have at it.  Not Konopka or Cheyrou or Giovinco or Morrow or Jackson.

Ref Rating : 4 out of 5.  Toledo let’em play.

I Am Not The Gaffer, But… : I would be asking Bezbatchenko to compile a list of the top 20 players in a wishlist, try to sign seven of them.

In Case You PVR’d It : watch the goals, but have a drink in hand for the third one.

I’m struggling to say nice things about Toronto FC tonight.  I think if you watched it, you’d have difficulty too.  Montreal played them off the park, for the most part.  They were out classed in strategy, and lacking the talent to handle it.  Their defense was water tight.  That last 20 minutes was infinite.  Not that I held the belief that they’d mount a comeback, but rather I was more concerned that it could get worse.

To the two gentlemen who’s faces were brief poster-children for TFC supporters on the telly, that’s exactly how anyone who is even remotely emotionally invested should feel.  That melange of rage, humiliation, humility and exhaustive disappointment.  I am far from the greatest TFC supporter, but I empathized with them, without the experience of a 12-hour round trip bus ride to really hammer it home.

Can hear supporters in the field mic taunt Jozy he sucked in England and he sucks here.  Sometimes I’ve agreed, but the numbers don’t lie… Next season, someone’s gonna have to bring some punctuation for the Drogba Legend sign.  I think a comma and a question mark would be excellent trolling… Maybe it’s a bit of schadenfreude, but I desperately hoped Bekker would bag one.  When they’re this beaten, they need to hit the bottom, whatever that may look like… I like Montreal’s tannoy guy. He sounds more wrestling ring announcer, and less upscale strip club DJ like the guy we have.

Player Ratings : Konopka 6.5, Morrow 6, Kantari 5.5 (Zavaleta 6), Williams 5.5, Jackson 6.5, Osorio 6.5 (Delgado N/A), Cheyrou 6, Bradley 6, Findley 5.5 (Gomez N/A), Giovinco 6, Altidore 6

Author: Mark Hinkley

Mark is a full-time graphic designer, full-time smart ass and full-time logo, stadium and kit nerd. When he isn't writing ridiculous match reports or redesigning logos for his own amusement, he's salivating over the day that promotion and relegation occurs in MLS. You can follow him @kitnerdmark on the twitterz.

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  1. felt like the 5-0 in new york. if montreal had really wanted to keep scoring in the second half it could have been, but they were happy to cruise home.

    absolutely shocking performance in so many ways. Jackson and Findley down the right against Piatti got thoroughly exposed on Sunday, why go with it again. Jackson’s been alright and there aren’t many options there, but put warner or delgado in to support jackson more than findley can. not like findley’s contributing anything offensively anyway.

    And after the game started and it was so obviously not working, change something. why wait until half time, make adjustments. jackson was aterrible here, and that left williams exposed and he looked shellshocked by it all and was making more mistakes that he previosuly had. the slip for the 2nd goal was unfortunate more than anything, but wow, that 3rd goal, absolutely criminal stuff.

    Had nothing going on up front either, giovinco had a moment or two, altidore had nothing, and bradley was anonymous. where’s the leadership that we hear so much about?

    massive failures all round really. spend a shit load of money, get one of the best mls seasons ever and 6th place and then that is all you get from it. becasue of the defence, becaasue of the organisation, because all season we looked like a poor team with a few good players. because of the coaching. Vanney needs to go. and given how bezbatchenko torpedoed last season for the sake of getting nelsen out and vanney in, I’d strongly think about him going as well.

    wait until the season’s done! judge us then! they said. fine, that was a shit season. you managed to do well against the poor teams and in a historically weak conference with 6 out of 10 teams making the playoffs, that means you made the playoffs. losing there was the world’s most predictable thing. that was a shit sandwich of the season. Giovinco was the bread in the sandwich, i wouldn’t blame him, I appreciate him, but the rest of it? shit.

    fuck you TFC. fuck you.

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  2. Well, this is a result we may not like but none of us are surprised by what took place at Stade Saputo. TFC finished their year with a 3 game losing streak. They snuck into the sixth out six playoff spots. Then frittered a lead in their last regular season game and completed the collapse by rolling out the same line-up and tactical formation in their very first playoff game. We all know, “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result”. And just to rub salt into the wounds, Vanney took no action to stave off the donkey-kicking except wave his hands and exhort the team on…there was that insanity thing.

    Vanney, you got out-coached and your team got out-played and the season ended on a very real downward trend. Another thing, there were large number of observers that had a surprisingly uniform perspective of the team tactics and line-ups, which you ignored. One thing that was proven tonight was the coach’s vision didn’t work.

    Congratulations to the Montreal Impact, their supporters and manager.

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  3. I agree all around. What a shit show. Vanney has a lot of explaining to do. The defense was awful, and the offense did nothing. He keeps playing Findley, who has done next to nothing positive this year – at least nothing better than a guy like Delgado. But when you know you are playing against the hottest striker in the league again who just killed you 4 days ago, maybe you should think about defensive reinforcements? How he didn’t start Warner instead of Findley is a mystery. Warner has done very well for TFC this season, and you could argue he has contributed more to the offense even than Findley has.

    I don’t know where Bradley or Altidore were. Was it too cold in Montreal or something? And I’m sick of watching Altidore get the ball with his back to goal and try to flick it back to someone, like he’s setting up a good scoring chance. When you got the ball it was a good scoring chance!!! Just turn around and shoot for fuck’s sake! Look, he has gotten a bunch of goals, but when he’s off, he’s really off.

    Defense and goalkeeping are a major, major priority this off season. As well as finding some scouts who can actually evaluate talent. No more signing defenders from Europe who are out of contract, because hmm…they sucked? Or their team got relegated? Or they are injury prone? Kantari was a complete bust, Perquis couldn’t play more than 3 games in a row, and Williams , who ended up being our main guy at the end, was released by a possibly worse team then TFC. It’s time to look at the league, figure out where the good defenders are and make a trade – like a good player for a good player, so both teams can fill gaps where they need it. Otherwise we gotta wait for TFC II guys to develop, and by then our only bright light in Giovinco will be frustrated and headed back to Europe.

    Ugh, what a disaster. Sorry for the rant guys.

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  4. Hope Manning understands that stability through continuity only works if it is the right type of continuity. Manning needs to be a bit of a political animal

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    • This is quite the predicament the new guy has got himself into. Already committed to stability, and they get humiliated after the “earned” ticket hike. I think you can do both by canning one, wouldn’t want to pick.

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      • I think the whole ‘they’re safe in their jobs thing’ was very much just a political statement due to the time of his hiring. No need to lob bombs into the team at that point.
        Hopefully that’s all that was and he’s ready to fully evaluate things with all possibilities open.
        remember when Kevin payne got here and said Mariner was safe, and some people pointed to that as evidence we should all shut up about Mariner maybe leaving, and then what do you know, mariner ended up leaving.

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        • Firing Vanney and/or Bez puts Manning on the job replacement clock. Leaving them in place buys him more time firewalling.

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