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Massive Predictions: Crew SC at Montreal Impact

Can the Black & Gold secure a playoff spot this weekend?

MLS: Montreal Impact at Columbus Crew SC Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Major League Soccer season is winding down quickly. Columbus Crew SC has just three more games remaining and are looking to lock up a postseason berth this weekend. To do so, the Black & Gold need at least a tie on Saturday afternoon at the Montreal Impact. Columbus also hopes to keep the Philadelphia Union at bay in the race for fourth place in the Eastern Conference after last weekend’s draw between the two teams. Philly sits one point back of Crew SC in the standings.

Montreal, meanwhile, is hanging on to its MLS Cup playoff lives. The Impact sit in the sixth and final playoff spot in the East and are just two points ahead of the surging D.C. United, who defeated Montreal 5-0 last weekend. After the embarrassing loss and in need of points, the Impact will be a tough foe for Crew SC.

Can the Black & Gold go on the road and get the team’s eighth result away from MAPFRE Stadium of the year to guarantee the postseason? Let’s see what our staff thinks of this game.

Ralph Schudel

I think this game is a trap game for Columbus Crew SC. Montreal is superb on the counter attack and score a good amount of goals in transition. Look for the Impact to force the Black & Gold into some difficult decisions and force turnovers at the center of the park. Crew SC can be successful by making smart dynamic runs into the box and following their shots as Montreal goalkeeper Evan Bush is very prone to spilling the ball in front of net.
Columbus Crew SC 1 Montreal Impact 1

Guilherme Torres

Columbus will have its second chance to clinch a playoff spot but it will face a desperate opponent in Montreal. The Impact saw their comfortable sixth place spot become jeopardized after last week’s 5-0 defeat to D.C. United and will want to use its home field advantage to add three valuable points and get back on track.

For the Crew, this is also an important game as the Philadelphia Union closed the gap and could leapfrog the Black & Gold this weekend. The key for a good result will have an effective defensive game plan and use Montreal’s desperation against itself.
Columbus Crew SC 1 Montreal Impact 1

Patrick Murphy

This is a tricky one for Crew SC. On one hand, the team now knows it can secure a spot in the postseason with a result but also want to secure as many points as possible in order to continue chasing New York City FC for third place in the East. Montreal needs to start getting results to hold off D.C. United and was blistered 5-0 last week.

I expect the home side to come out aggressive, looking to take advantage of being in the friendly confines. I think Columbus’ defense could be valuable here as the Impact haven’t been prolific this year. I see the Black & Gold keeping things tight in this one but ultimately falling short, having to wait another week to clinch the playoffs.
Montreal Impact 2 Columbus Crew SC 1

Patrick Guldan

The Columbus Crew SC offense has been underperforming all season. Scoring on the road has been especially tough for this Crew SC team and to win on the road you have to score. The Montreal Impact defense has given up some chances, but for Columbus to take advantage, they’ll need excellent performances from their attacking midfield trio of Federico Higuain, Justin Meram, and Pedro Santos. Each of the three have flashed signs of being a difference maker, but rarely at the same time. It often times looks like a single player is “on” for a game. That often leads to a stagnant offense that struggles for chances and goals.

The Impact have been very inconsistent over the last month plus. They recorded big wins over Philadelphia and the New York Red Bulls, but suffered a defeat against Toronto FC and tied a struggling New York City FC before being blown out by D.C. United last week. For a team struggling for their playoff lives, they haven’t been able to carry over a performance from game to game. The offense will come and go while the defense vacillates between locking down some good teams and getting absolutely dismantled.
Columbus Crew SC 1 Montreal Impact 1

There you have it, our predictions are in. How do you think Crew SC will do on the trip to Canada? Let us know in the comment section below.