MLS playoff game delayed after lines around penalty box drawn incorrectly
Not the mishap many would have expected at the biggest of stages in the MLS.
The MLS Playoff game between Montreal Impact and Toronto FC was delayed for over 35 minutes after officials found out that the lines around the penalty box were incorrectly drawn on. It was found out that all three lines of the 18-yard box were drawn almost two yards closer to the goalposts and needed to be replaced before the game could start.
Joey Saputo, the president of Montreal Impact, did speak to the media after the minor fiasco. "We're somewhat embarrassed. Obviously, it's the first time it's happened to us. We've been in situations like this before, where we have 61,000 fans. We have to take the responsibility for it. It's our fault. It's unfortunate it happened."
The Impact were playing in the Olympic Stadium, home of the Montreal Expos baseball team, as they sold 61,004 tickets for the first leg of the Eastern Conference final. Their current home ground Stade Saputo can handle only 20,801 attendants.
Goals from Dominic Oduro, Matteo Mancosu and Ambroise Oyongo was enough to give Montreal a 3-2 victory over the Toronto side. The Reds who visited Montreal for the first leg, have a lot to make up for in the second. The winner will play in the MLS Cup final in Seattle or Colorado on the 10th of December.
Following the match, Didier Drogba who currently plays for Impact told assembled reporters that he won't be returning to the club in 2017. “There's still one or maybe two games to go. Next week's game is more important than if it's finished or not. Everyone knows it was my last game here. Now let's focus on the semi-final.", the Ivorian striker said.
The 38-year-old came on as a substitute in the 71st minute but saw no action apart from a Michael Bradley goal that reduced Montreal's lead to one. The Chelsea legend who signed for the club way back in 2016, was a revelation in the MLS. He scored a blistering 11 goals in his first 11 games, but recurring injuries mean he lost his starting place.
Way back in October, Drogba refused to play for the Montreal Impact in a game against Toronto FC itself. He was excluded from the starting lineup, and that didn't sit well with the striker.
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