ORLANDO, Florida - Opening the tournament in style, the Montreal Impact topped Fluminense FC U23 1-0 on Wednesday night at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex, in its first game of the Walt Disney World Pro Soccer Classic. Midfielder Sanna Nyassi scored the lone goal.
With a first half largely dominated by the Impact, the game's first goal came in the 18th minute when defender Hassoun Camara found the ball just inside the box, to the right side of goal. His left-footed shot was pushed away by the goalkeeper, but fell to Sanna Nyassi. The Gambian midfielder settled the ball before firing it off of the keeper and into the net.
Lefèvre, Camara and Collen Warner helped goalkeeper Troy Perkins earn the shutout by making a number of solid defensive plays, especially in the first half.
The second half saw a number of changes for the blue side, including all current or former field players from the Academy on the field at the same time: Wandrille Lefèvre, Karl W. Ouimette, Maxim Tissot, Zakaria Messoudi, Victor Ndiaye, Jérémy Gagnon-Laparé and Amine Meftouh.
In total, 21 players saw action for the Impact in this first game of the tournament.
The Impact is now 2-0 in preseason action, following a 2-1 victory on Sunday over Orlando City SC in a friendly.
The Impact will play its next Disney Pro Classic matchups with the New York Red Bulls this Saturday, February 22 at 6pm and then versus Sporting Kansas City, next Wednesday, on February 26 at 8pm. The championship game is set for Saturday, March 1. All Impact games throughout the tournament are streamed live at impactmontreal.com.
"It was a better game tonight," said Impact head coach Frank Klopas. "We really pushed the play in the first. In the second, we gave some valuable experience to our young players and we managed to keep a clean sheet."
"It was a better game tonight, compared to the first one," also said defender Hassoun Camara. "We had to be better physically and technically and we were today. We respected the game plan and now we have to grow from this game. I played with a little bit of pain but I keep working hard. I had some good runs down the flank but it was a collective effort tonight."
"We were stronger tonight compared to our first game," said defender Wandrille Lefèvre. "We had goals in mind: win the game and keep a clean sheet. These are important elements that we want to improve compared to last year and we did it tonight."