MONTREAL (ABC4 Sports) – As well as Real Salt Lake had been playing, the team was kind of due for a letdown, especially on a work week.
In its first midweek game of the season, RSL did not look sharp in a 2-1 loss to the Montreal Impact, ending its 3-game winning streak.
Omar Browne broke a scoreless tie at the end of the first half, finding the left corner of the net past a diving Nick Rimando, who was making his 350th career MLS start in goal.
Sam Johnson appeared to tie the game for RSL in the second half, but he was offside on a header goal.
After Danny Toia clipped Bacary Sagna in the box, Saphir Taider buried the ensuing penalty kick to give Montreal a 2-0 lead.
Johnson scored his fifth goal of the season for Real Salt Lake in the 84th minute off a snap-down header pass from Damir Kreilach, but RSL did not threaten again.
“We worked on something specific all week and the first goal comes from us not executing that when we executed the first 46 minutes and 50 seconds,” said head coach Mike Petke. “It was a poor PK to give up in the second half. We fought back though, of course. When you’re down, you push it and teams always sit back.”
“Coming on the road is difficult for any team,” Johnson said. “We just need to have the energy to win. They are at home. We came on the road and we came to win. The first half they did a good job pressing and in the second half we were more aggressive.”
Evan Bush made three saves to help the Impact (7-6-3) win for the first time in four games.
Montreal outshot RSL, 15-8.
RSL midfielder Albert Rusnak injured his ankle in the first half and was not able to return.
Real Salt Lake falls to 6-7-1 on the season. RSL next travels to New York to take on the Red Bulls on Saturday, in what will be its third game in eight days.
“Albert came off a bit injured,” Petke said. “We’ll see what his status is. Obviously we had some tired guys from the Friday game putting in a shift tonight, so we’ll have to really think closely about who’s on the field on Saturday and how we’re going to approach this game.”