The Portland Timbers did not bring many of their regular starters with them to Montreal.
With Portland navigating a compacted schedule and looking ahead to an important home game against FC Dallas on Sunday, Timbers coach Giovanni Savarese opted to leave Brian Fernandez, Diego Valeri, Sebastian Blanco and the majority of his other starters in Portland when the club traveled to Montreal. The Timbers brought just 16 players with them on the road trip.
The average age of Savarese’s starting lineup was 24.
The youngsters showed fight on the road, but it was not enough.
Montreal forward Orji Okwonkwo netted two goals as the Timbers (5-8-2, 17 points) fell 2-1 to the Impact (9-7-3, 30 points) at Stade Saputo in Montreal Wednesday in a game that was delayed by 40 minutes due to storms in the area.
“We had to do this rotation,” Savarese said. “It was very important. We still believe that we could have gotten a little bit more from this game, but now we have the guys (at home) ready to be able to battle this weekend.”