The New England Revolution will host the Montreal Impact this Saturday and the game is shaping up to be two teams who are currently in different directions. The Revs are winless through their first two games and the Impact are one quality result away from advancing to the final of the CONCACAF Champions League.
Despite what separates the two teams at this point in the season, three points will be on the line and they will be anybody's to grab. The Revs long to enjoy the sweet taste of victory once more, but first let's take a look at several threats Montreal has that could prevent that from unfolding.
1.) Ignacio Piatti: Rev-killer Marco Di Vaio may no longer take the field for Frank Klopas' side, but that in no way means the Impact have lost their killer instinct. Enter Ignacio Piatti, an Argentinian prototypical playmaker, who has the potential to run rampant through a New England defense that has leaked in five goals through two games.
Montreal's number 10 is dynamic, energetic, and has an undeniable desire to take people on when the ball is at his foot. When he does just that he punishes attackers who lunge in and Piatti has an under-appreciated nose for the back of the net. Piatti recently scored in Montreal's 2-0 victory over Alajuelense, but look no further than the below goal he scored against Columbus Crew SC to see his brilliance at work. The man has moves.
2.) Revamped Defense: There is no denying that Montreal's defense was poor last year. It allowed 58 goals and Troy Perkins had trouble with both commanding his back-four and preventing the ball from finding the back of the net. However, early signs are suggesting that the Impact's back-line is shaping up to be a formidable one.
Evan Bush has admirably stepped into goal, Laurent Ciman and Bakary Soumare man the heart of defense, and Danny Toia and Hassoun Camara have taken up spots on their respective flanks. Montreal is fresh off a shutout in the CONCACAF Champions league and their confidence will be high.
The new-look defense combines athleticism with veteran nous and has the potential to frustrate the Revs' attacking corps on Saturday.
3.) The Unknown Danger: With Di Vaio retiring in the offseason, Montreal fans were left wondering who could step in and fill the Italian's shoes. In step Cameron Porter, the 45th overall pick of the 2015 MLS SuperDraft. The Princeton graduate was wrecking havoc in the Ivy League not too long ago and appears not to be intimidated by the challenges of professional soccer.
He is subtly strong on the ball, isn't afraid to unleash a shot from distance, and has that striker's instinct that coaches just cannot teach. Porter also scored what is arguably Montreal's most famous goal ever when he equalized against Pachuca in stoppage time of the quarterfinal round of the CONCACAF Champions League. Porter may not be a household name, but he poses a serious threat to the Revs.