Galaxy, Impact look to reverse losing trends
One win in the last seven games for the Montreal Impact and four straight losses for the Los Angeles Galaxy.
Both sides will look to snap out of their respective funks when they face off in a matinee tilt on Monday afternoon at Montreal's Saputo Stadium.
The Impact (3-8-0) head into the match a rested bunch, not having played since wrapping up a stretch of three games in eight days from May 5 to May12. They kicked off the busy week with a big win over New England, but haven't been able to capitalize since. Montreal was shut out by Chicago despite a strong effort, and that followed a less than stellar performance in a 2-0 loss to Philadelphia, which coach Remi Garde called his team's "worst game of the year."
"I didn't expect that because the week before we controlled the game, we controlled the ball, we controlled everything against a very good team," Garde told the Montreal Gazette. "I was surprised that a week later, with the same players, with the same construction, we couldn't win. I'm not pessimistic, I'm not worried. I just want the players to be confident."
Monday's visit marks just the fourth by Los Angeles to Montreal. The Impact have one win and two draws against the Galaxy in the three previous outings, scoring six goals -- the only goals they've scored against the club in six overall meetings.
Defensively, it has been a struggle for Montreal, which sits last in MLS with 26 goals conceded. Injuries to the back end have been an issue and continue to be, with Michael Petrasso and Rudy Camacho questionable for the game.
"Every week we have to change the backline and it's not an easy situation for me and it's not an easy situation for the team," Garde said. "Normally, when you want to have stability and for some reason we are struggling to keep the same players every weekend. We have to cope, we have to adapt."
The Galaxy (3-6-1) are no strangers to issues in their own end. Sigi Schmid's group has given up three goals in each of its past three games, all 3-2 losses.
"Disappointed because of the goals we gave up and even being down we had enough chances to equalize the game and tie the game up. We've got to defend better," Schmid told mlssoccer.com after their most recent loss to Dallas. "We can't give up the goals we're giving up. We're not defending well enough. Defending is not just defenders, but the whole team. We're giving up soft goals and we can't be giving up soft goals."
Ola Kamara scored for the third straight match in the loss, his fourth of the season to take the team lead -- one ahead of star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic. A goal for Kamara against Montreal would match a career-best scoring streak, set last year (Aug. 24-Sept. 17).
While Ibrahimovic failed to find the back of the net against Dallas, he took six shots, albeit none on target. The closest he came was when his free kick hit the post in the 89th minute.
"Obviously, things go easier when you win and you have the confidence," he told the Los Angeles Daily News of the Galaxy's struggles. "You do the same mistake, but the difference is, you're winning, so you don't talk about the mistakes as much as when you're losing. We want and we will ... and it will arrive."
Updated May 19, 2018