For about two minutes, which probably seemed as long as the international break they were going to start after the game, the players and managers of CF Montreal possibly believed that the soccer gods had other scores to settle with them, Saturday afternoon. Until video refereeing assistance brought them some form of salvation.
In an emotional end to the game, Mason Toye found the back of the net in the 87th minute of play and CF Montreal snatched a 1-0 victory over the Chicago Fire at Soldier Field.
This CF Montreal win (3-3-2) allowed them to end a two-game losing streak, heartbreaking losses conceded late in the second half, despite good performances.
However, this time, the Montreal team offered a performance that left head coach Wilfried Nancy on his appetite.
“This is football. Today, we were not good at the game, and we win. We take the three points because we have suffered too much lately not to take them. I’m happy with the resilience of the guys, I’m happy that they didn’t give up, despite a very average performance collectively. But in terms of attitude, well done to them, ”Nancy analyzed.
Returning with the team after a five-game absence, Toye scored his third goal of the season, in as many games. He headed a cross from Zorhan Bassong, who was participating in a first meeting in the starting role.
“I train, I work hard and I have a lot of confidence that every time I jump on the field, I will score a goal. It really is. It’s my job, it’s what I get paid for, ”Toye said.
When asked about the offensive qualities Toye has displayed so far this season – and in the short time spent on the pitch – Nancy was not surprised.
“Mason, he’s a goalscorer. When he arrived last year I remember the first training session he did, he scored striker goals. The advantage he has is someone who does a lot of individual work in front of the goal. He creates his own exercises in training, at the end of training, and he finishes the actions, ”said Nancy.
“So today, I’m not surprised, sincerely. I told the staff, `Mason, when he comes home, either he’s going to have five chances but he’s not going to score, or he’s going to have one and he’s going to score. That’s what happened. Then he is good, he feels good in the team, ”he added.
Toye could not have played the hero if, previously, Clément Diop had not been up to the task. The Fire sent 19 balloons in its direction, six of which required stops by the French goalkeeper. Diop notably stopped four shots in the second half.
“He did his job, and he did it well. It allowed us to stay in the game, ”Nancy analyzed.
In addition, this third CF Montreal win in 2021 would not have been possible without the intervention of video refereeing assistance, which canceled Wyatt Omsberg’s tying goal in the last moments of stoppage of play. the second half, for offside.
Already last week, FC Cincinnati had scored the winning net on a streak where an offside should have been called, noted Nancy.
“I was so annoyed with the way we conceded the goal, not necessarily the cross but the fact that we didn’t break the streak sooner than I was disconnected,” said Nancy, speaking of the game leading up to Omsberg’s goal.
“I also think, compared to what happened last week, the league has realized that. Maybe there was some action on their part to take a good look at offside goals. «
CF Montreal played this meeting in the absence of forwards Romell Quioto and Erik Hurtado, injured in a hip and a thigh, respectively. Hip-injured defender Kamal Miller missed a second game in a row, while midfielder Lassi Lappalainen left for Finland’s national team.
CF Montreal begins a hiatus that will last nearly a month. He will play his next meeting on June 23 against DC United.
This “local” match will take place in Miami, sports director Olivier Renard also confirmed on Saturday.
With CF Montreal determined to end a two-game losing streak and the Fire aiming for a second straight win, the first half offered dynamic play and some good scoring chances on both sides.
In an interval of about 20 minutes, the two teams totaled nine shots towards the opponent’s net, six of which came from the Fire – although CF Montreal were slightly dominant in possession of the ball (53.1 percent) during the first 45 minutes of play.
Bjorn Johnsen got CF Montreal’s only shot on target, a quality shot that forced goaltender Bobby Shuttleworth to make a nice save in the 20th minute.
Diop imitated Shuttleworth by stopping shots from Brian Gutierrez and Gaston Gimenez.
The Fire largely dominated the second half and Diop kept the score 0-0 thanks to a superb save on a close range shot from Fabian Herbers in the 75th minute of play, and another less than ten minutes later. on Alvaro Medran, before Toye’s almost divine interventions and the video cover.