Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Huge crowd sees Montreal sting Santos [VIDEO]
by Ridge Mahoney, February 26th, 2009 7AM

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

[CONCACAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE] Four years after he left the Montreal Impact, Eduardo Sebrango paid back the team that brought him back.
Sebrango scored both goals in front of a team-record crowd at Olympic Stadium as the Impact beat Santos Laguna of Mexico, 2-0, in the first leg of their Concacaf Champions' League quarterfinal series. Santos will host the second leg next Thursday in Torreon, Mexico.

Montreal, which normally plays its home games at the 13,000-seat Stade Saputo, brought this match indoors to the Olympic Stadium. A noisy crowd of 55,571 - largest in team history - that was sheltered from sub-freezing temperatures outside kept up a constant din and the tired Mexicans never recovered after going down a goal in the fifth minute when Roberto Brown slipped past several defenders and played a short ball that Sebrango rammed into the net.

Sebrango, a native of Cuba who scored 36 goals in 83 games for Montreal before moving to Vancouver in 2005, added a second goal in the 77th minute against a statuesque Santos defense. Brown headed on Nevio Pizzolito's long ball, and when defender Johnnie Garcia let it bounce over him, Sebrango outjumped the defender and goalie Oswaldo Sanchez to nod it into the net.

"I was excited and confident coming into this match," said Sebrango, 35. "Brown and I really clicked together and this was a very important game for the team. For the upcoming game, we need to be organized defensively and go along as a team."

Neither team showed much sharpness. Santos was playing its fourth game in 11 days and its defenders reacted sluggishly while conceding both goals.

Montreal is still a month away from starting its regular season, though it played nine lower-division and semipro clubs on a tour of Italy, winning seven and tying two. Once it had the lead, the Impact tightened up its defensive efforts, and while Santos outshot Montreal, 6-3 in the first half, it seldom got clear shots from close range.

Christian Benitez had several chances for Santos, but usually misfired. Those shots that Santos did put on frame were handled by keeper Matt Jordan, who posted his fifth shutout of the competition and recorded eight saves.

Only two other soccer games at Olympic Stadium have drawn larger crowds. The 1976 Summer Olympics final drew 71,617 fans and a 1981 NASL playoff game between the Montreal Manic and Chicago Sting attracted 58,000.

"The crowd was great and helped us get through," said Coach John Limniatis. "This being said, the toughest stretch is yet to come. This was our first competitive game under pressure and it was almost perfect. We managed to do what we wanted to do against them."

The winner of the Santos-Montreal series will play either Houston (MLS) or Mexican club Atlante, which tied, 1-1, in Houston on Tuesday in the first leg.

And Wednesday's other quarterfinal, Jaime Lozano's free kick game Cruz Azul a 1-0 win over UNAM Pumas 1-0. The winner of the series faces the victor of the Puerto Rico Islanders-Honduras Marathon series, whose first leg is Thursday in Puerto Rico.


No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Again, the USA wilts in the second half    
The USA's performance in a 3-2 loss to Chile on Wednesday raises lots of questions and ...
NYCFC makes change at the top    
New York City FC has appointed Tom Glick as its new president, replacing Tim Pernetti, who ...
MLS sells KickTV to Copa90    
Major League Soccer has sold KICKTV, its dedicated global soccer platform approaching one million subscribers on ...
What They're Saying: Bob Foose    
"We're a long way apart. I don't know that I want to handicap it, but it's ...
Gyau, Morse and Haley move up with U-18 women    
The U.S. under-18 women's national team will hold a one-week training camp that begins Sunday at ...
Video Pick: The Magic of the FA Cup?    
The folks at The Guardian have become suspicious about the marketing of the FA Cup, the ...
2015 MLS Preseason Action    
The LA Galaxy and San Jose Earthquakes opened preseason play with shutout victories in scrimmages on ...
USA falls to Chile, 3-2, in 2015 opener    
The U.S. men's national team opened its 2015 season wtih a 3-2 loss at Chile on ...
W-League will return for 21st season with just 18 teams    
A slimmed down W-League will kick off the 2015 season in May with 18 teams, down ...
Red Bull dealing pays off; Sacha Kljestan arrives     
The New York Red Bulls have succeeded in outflanking the LA Galaxy to land U.S. national ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives