CF Montreal was looking to make another push in their run for the playoffs with a trip to Orlando to face the third-best team in the Eastern Conference. Montreal were on a three-game winless streak and looking to change the narrative.
The first 10 minutes of the game were pretty tame with both teams getting good chances to take the lead and continuing to feel each other out. The visitors got on the board first when Mathieu Choniere volleyed a lob pass from Romell Quioto and put it past Pedro Gallese to make it 1-0 Montreal.
Orlando was reduced to 10 men when Nani was shown a red card in the 33rd minute and the Portuguese player was sent off after much protest with the referee. Montreal doubled its lead minutes later when Quioto got a great pass and managed to beat Gallese with a quick shot.
The home side got on the board in the 40th minute when Robin Jansson off a free kick managed to find a rebound and put the ball past James Pantemis — who got the start — to make it 2-1. Victor Wanyama thought he had re-gained Montreal’s two-goal lead when he got a shot from far on target. However, it was denied by Gallese.
The first half ended after five minutes of added time. Montreal went into the locker room up by one with 45 minutes to play.
Orlando attempts a comeback but falters to Montreal
About 10 minutes into the second half and it looked like Montreal was the better team. Then Montreal witnessed a scary moment when Orlando had their first scoring chance of the half and Pantemis took a leg to head but was deemed OK and stayed in the game. The home side equalized the game in the 64th minute when Ruan Teixeira found a loose rebound and beat Pantemis between his legs.
In the 68th minute, Wilfred Nancy brought Ahmed Hamdi and Lassi Lappalainen into the game hoping to give his offense a spark. Minutes later it paid off as Lappalainen volleyed another ball into the back of the net for the 3-2 lead with less than 30 minutes left.
The visitors once again doubled their lead when Ibrahim Sunusi managed to kick a short pass past Gallese to make it 4-2 with less than 10 minutes left in regulation. Orlando got into even deeper trouble when Andres Perea was shown a red card for taking down Sunusi just outside the box and the home side was now down to nine men.
Six minutes of time was added on to the 90 but it wasn’t enough as Montreal hung on for the win and a crucial three points in the playoff race and will now head home to play the next four of their next five games at the friendly confines of Saputo Stadium.
They will play their next game on Sunday against the Chicago Fire with kickoff scheduled for 1 p.m.