CF Montreal Looks To Bounce Back Against Inter Miami
After booking their spot in the Canadian Championship Final on Wednesday night, CF Montreal faces Inter Miami next and looks to snap a two-game winless streak in MLS.
“Every time a game finishes you need to focus on the next one”, said Hernan Losada Thursday morning. “We will try to be smart in this situation and we will try to avoid more players getting injured.”
The team is on a current stretch of playing 11 games in 36 days and, so far, has played five with six more – and a few more weeks of playing twice a week until the international break, too.
“At the same time, you need results. You need to win and get points.”
CF Montreal and Inter Miam meet again after playing in the first game of the season where Inter Miami won at DRV Pink Stadium and James Pantemis got injured.
The two teams find themsleves in similar spots after making a big trade a few weeks back. That trade has seemed to work out for both clubs, with CF Montreal now seeing the return of Kamal Miller this weekend.
“It will be special. I was in a situation like that before where I had to face my former team and there is always something special. Sometimes you face a friend and it can give you extra motivation,” added Losada.
In regards to Romell Quioto, who got injured again, Losada confirmed the worse possible news in that he tore his hamstring and will be out long term with no timeline given.
I asked Losada how CF Montreal plans to stop the likes of Josef Martinez and the Inter Miami offense.
“They have several threats in attack. They have key players and you have to be careful with them,” he responded.
CF Montreal’s main issue continues to be secondary scoring and Losada was asked about his options now that his number one striker is out long-term.
“Lassi Lappalainen and Ariel Lassiter can play higher like second forward, and when looking at the number ten spot you have Sean Rea, Matko Miljevic, Ahmed Hamdi, Bryce Duke, and even Mathieu Choiniere can play – and they have the freedom to go up in attack.”
I had the chance to ask Bryce Duke about playing his former team on Saturday and he seemed excited for it.
“It should be fun”, said Duke. “I was there not too long ago. It’s going to be a good game, both teams are in similar spots and both teams need points. I am excited to get on the field and play against my old teammates and hopefully come out with three points.”
Duke was asked if maybe he could give some pointers in regards to facing his old club.
“Yeah of course, I was there for a year so I know how they play, certain tendencies, and what the coach might be thinking. It’s something I will talk to the guys about and use that to our advantage.”
The trade to Duke came as a shock to him at first, but after arriving in Montreal the American was able to get acclimated quickly and fit in well with his new team.
“Personally I think the trade was a good move on my behalf. Both teams went on a stretch of wins, so it looks like it worked out for both teams – but my team is now Montreal.”
I asked Duke about his adjustment coming from Miami to Montreal and he had no problem integrating into the club and the city.
“The weather is a bit different, so I needed to get adjusted to the cold, but the weather now is pretty nice. But in regards to the team, it’s similar with good vibes. They’re a good group of guys so it’s been an easy move.”
Kickoff is scheduled for Saturday at 7:30PM EST and the game can be seen on Apple TV MLS Season Pass.