Montreal Impact shut out struggling San Jose Earthquakes
Taider, Piatti help Montreal move to 9-12-0
The Montreal Impact are starting to make it very difficult for opponents to get any points at Saputo Stadium.
Montreal extended its home win streak to five games with a 2-0 victory over the San Jose Earthquakes in MLS action Saturday night.
It's the Impact's longest winning streak at home since the end of 2015 and start of 2016 when they won nine in a row, including playoffs.
"The atmosphere [at home] is great and the crowd always gives us a push," said midfielder Samuel Piette. "It just feels comfortable to play here. This is a league where it's always tough to get points away, so it's really important to get as many as we can at home. And that's what we've been doing lately."
Designated players Saphir Taider and Ignacio Piatti scored for Montreal (9-12-0), which bounced back after a 3-0 loss in New York on Wednesday. It was the Impact's fifth win in the past six games.
"We play with more confidence offensively when we play at home," said coach Remi Garde. "It gives us more chances and more opportunities. We also hold the ball collectively more easily at home than in away games."
Evan Bush, with two saves, earned his seventh clean sheet of the season.
Montreal making moves
Montreal moved within a point of fifth place in the Eastern Conference after losses by Chicago and New England on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the lowly Earthquakes (2-11-6) are winless in their last 10 matches dating back to May 12. They are 0-6-4 during that stretch.
San Jose was looking for just its second road win of the season, but fell behind early.
Taider gave Montreal the lead in the eighth minute, the team's second fastest goal of the season. The 26-year-old got a pass from Piatti in the box and settled the bouncing ball with his right foot before firing a shot into the corner of the net with his left.
San Jose defender Shea Salinas gave Taider too much space on the play and the Impact midfielder made the visitors pay with his fourth goal of the season.
"This is all about teamwork," said Taider, who joined Montreal on loan from Bologna in the off-season. "We're playing with more confidence. We're winning games so everyone is feeling good."
The Earthquakes, who fell to 0-9-3 when conceding the first goal of the game, have yet to keep a clean sheet this season.
Piatti put the game to bed with his 10th goal of the year in the 74th minute.
The Argentine received a pass from Alejandro Silva just outside the penalty box. With no Quakes player closing him down, Piatti fired a side-footed shot with a lot of spin just out of goalie Andrew Tarbell's reach, to the delight of 15,485 fans.
"It's good to have Saphir and [Piatti] on the left side, it's pretty strong there," said Piette. "We're not just relying on [Piatti] now. Saphir is pushing his game a little more forward. And we have the right side too with Alejandro.
"It's more difficult now for the other teams to set their formations against us."