CF Montreal Looks To Regain Home Success Against Atlanta United
CF Montreal hosts Atlanta United on Saturday at Saputo Stadium looking to regain their success at home. It was a busy week for the team entering the international transfer window.
They already made their first deal acquiring Kwadwo Mahala Opoku from LAFC in exchange for GAM money. There is some familiarity as he played with Bryce Duke when they both were in Los Angeles.
“It’s cool because me and him signed at LAFC at the same time,” said Duke in his first remark and reaction to the move. “We got kinda close but overall he is a good player and has speed and can finish and score goals.”
I asked Duke about his personal relationship with Opoku since they signed and played together out west.
“He’s an overall great guy and super humble. Anyone can get along with him, he is a great addition on the field and off the field as well.”
Duke sees the move, which was done on day one of the international transfer window, as a positive one – and one that could help the team make the playoffs.
“We see it as we are pushing to get into a playoff spot. Anything can happen… picking up someone of that caliber who won the MLS Cup last year, it shows we can be a better team.”
I also had a chance to ask Duke about sizing up the opponent on Saturday in Atlanta United.
“It’s a good team. They are good on set pieces and they are dangerous in the attack. You never know what’s going to happen, but thankfully we are playing at home and that’s our advantage.”
Hernan Losada’s reaction to the move was a positive one, and late Friday it was confirmed that Opuko was arriving in Montreal on Saturday night so he will not make his debut against Atlanta.
“I am very happy,” Losada responded in his opening statement. “I am very enthusiastic about this addition. It’s a different profile with a lot of speed, and he can play on the wing or second striker and he can help us.”
Losada did confirm the following on Thursday morning: that Mathieu Choiniere was going to try and train with the group. while confirming Lassi Lappalainen was out and Samuel Piette will be on the bench to start on Saturday.
He also gave his thoughts on the game on Saturday and what to expect from an opposition that is offensively talented with the likes of Thiago Almada, and coming off a big win over the Philadelphia Union.
“Atlanta is a good team with a lot of quality. It is going to be a very complicated game but we need to build back our success at home.”