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Half-time thoughts: This is not going to plan

But there’s still time to come out of this match with a positive result.

MLS: Eastern Conference Championship-Toronto FC at Montreal Impact Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

A few quick thoughts on what we’ve just witnessed in the first 45 minutes in Montreal.

The Good

MLS: Eastern Conference Championship-Toronto FC at Montreal Impact Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
  • The pitch fiasco gifted us a few extra minutes of hope and optimism.
  • It’s an improvement on last year.
  • Montreal have only had three shots on target - the two goals and one good, but low-percentage effort from Dominic Oduro.
  • Greg Vanney made some adjustments as the sky was falling in and Toronto have stabilised things somewhat since then.
  • This is a two-legged tie and away goals are ridiculously important. A one-goal loss in which TFC score, which is still entirely possible, is not a disaster at all.
  • And we know Toronto can score - it’s less probable that they don’t. But another one against could be a killer.
  • They’re a better team than last year and they’re battling.

The Bad

MLS: Eastern Conference Championship-Toronto FC at Montreal Impact Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports
  • As alluded to above, Toronto are in an extremely vulnerable position here. If Montreal score again to make it 3-0, we are in big trouble.
  • To the eye, the Olympic Stadium pitch looks long and narrow. The turf, obviously, is very fast. It’s perfect for Montreal’s style of play and Toronto’s attempt to come out and be aggressive in this game may have been a mistake.
  • Defensive errors are creeping back in. Nick Hagglund was caught in no man’s land on the first goal and the second came as a result of Steven Beitashour making a complete mess of what should have been a routine clearance.
  • The front four has not clicked, at all. Sebastian Giovinco has looked dangerous in spells and Armando Cooper is fighting, but there is no semblance of a combination between those two, Jonathan Osorio and Jozy Altidore.
  • When Altidore does not get the right kind of service, he looks really bad. That is happening tonight and Montreal are preying on him for quick turnovers and breaks.