The Impact is on a very slippery slope and will try to stop the fall by visiting the New York Red Bulls on Sunday night.
Already, it's strange to write it this way when you know that the Bleu-blanc-noir played a home game at Red Bull Arena a week ago.
But back on topic. The Impact is going through a difficult streak with three consecutive losses and four losses in its last five games.
“It's difficult because we have traveled a lot. We are tired with all the games we have had and we do not have a big squad, ”conceded Victor Wanyama.
While it should be a question of this confrontation against the Bulls, we wonder especially if the team will have the chance to return to Montreal after the meeting since its next match is not scheduled until next Saturday against the Chicago Fire, at Red Bull Arena.
And it seems that this will be the case, according to what Samuel Piette confided to colleague Olivier Brett.
Thierry Henry, himself, had left the doubt hanging during his press conference on Friday. Unless the decision was made quickly between Friday afternoon and Saturday morning.
However, the team left Montreal for Vancouver on September 12 and only returned to town for a few hours, arriving by night flight on the 17th before heading to New Jersey, where it has been since.
The frantic pace of the calendar and the multiple trips begin to weigh heavily on the team which is in deficit of several soldiers.
“We miss people. Today we were a little tight in training, ”said Henry in a videoconference held on Friday.
The Impact driver therefore sees himself as obliged to play with his roster, but he does not necessarily see things that way.
“I don't have to juggle my team, I just have to put the best elements available on the field. ”
Henry will have to at least review his plans in attack since he will have to play a second game without his striker Romell Quioto, suspended for one more game following a red card for an elbow.
Quioto served his first game suspension in the New England Revolution meeting on Wednesday.
Henry admits that the speed at which games come back makes his job quite difficult.
“You have to try to find a balance between having a cohesive team and paying attention to guys who are injured.
“But we have to try to bring back points and stop this spiral. We must persist in the philosophy and not lose the structure. ”
Another important element, Saphir Taïder (thigh) ran on Friday, but his status is far from certain for Sunday night's game.
After the game against the Revolution, Henry lamented the fact that his team did not want to play soccer. Above all, he meant that his men had not given their full potential.
“What I didn't like was that we didn't try to play the way we can. ”
The players admitted bluntly that they had not responded as they should have.
“We know the results weren't good, so we hope to be able to turn the tide,” said Wanyama.
Bulls in transition
The New York Red Bulls are just one point ahead of the Impact in the Eastern Conference standings, and yet it seems almost everything separates them.
Already, the Bleu-blanc-noir will play abroad in his temporary home. The kind of thing that can't be invented. Mind you, this is New Jersey, where the NFL Jets and Giants can go up or catch each other, since they share MetLife Stadium.
But back to the Red Bulls. Once a power in the East, they seem to be in search of identity, or at least in transition.
The Taureans have just won two of their last three games, but went through a desert of four games without a win just before, which ultimately got the better of Chris Armas' post.
Thierry Henry, who will face his former team for the first time since taking the helm of the Impact, knows that the challenge will be great Sunday night.
“The Red Bulls are a team that presses really well. They scored a goal like that against Miami. They get the ball high enough and they go quickly against.
“We know exactly how they play and it's not easy to manage them, especially at home. ”
It's a style that is close to the one that Henry asks his men to practice. So in principle, it should be a good game for the fans.
On another note, the health situation makes life difficult for the team because of the restrictions in place.
The fact that there is a bubble for the professional team and another for the under-23s complicates the rehabilitation of injured players, but Thierry Henry recalled that this should not be an obstacle.
“Lassi [Lappalainen] had to go through a period without playing and he scored against Vancouver, Bojan didn't play for long and Maxi [Urruti] neither. Karifa [Yao] hasn't played for almost a year. It is up to us to prepare them. ”
However, as there is little rotation in the workforce despite the proximity of the games, the bench players do not get many minutes. Normally they could do rehearsals with the Under 23s, which is not currently possible.
The Impact is hit hard by injuries. We know in particular that Saphir Taïder is an uncertain case for the Sunday evening meeting.
Orji Okwonkwo, (hamstring), Anthony Jackson-Hamel (knee), Steeven Saba (foot), Mathieu Choinière (ankle) and Ballou Tabla (adductor) are all in the infirmary.
Some of them are with the team in New Jersey and others have stayed in Montreal to continue their recovery.