Revolution looks to continue momentum vs. Impact

After some early season stumbles, both the New England Revolution and Montreal Impact are hitting their respective strides.

New England goes for its fifth straight victory over Montreal on Friday night at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.

The Revolution are looking to continue their recent momentum. After opening the season with a shutout loss to the Philadelphia Union, New England posted two wins and a draw.

This contest also begins a stretch in which New England (2-1-1) plays five of seven MLS matches in Foxborough. Following this match, the Revolution will face FC Dallas on April 14.

“We have two home games in front of us and we’ll be looking to try to get maximum points,” New England coach Brad Friedel said. “If we get that, then the confidence can still build. We know that you have to earn the right to win every game and we’re going to have to put in monumental efforts again against both Montreal and Dallas.”

The Revolution are 8-0-2 in their last 10 league matches at home. New England is fourth in the Eastern Conference, one point ahead of Montreal (2-2-0), which is tied with the New York Red Bulls for fifth.

“Our momentum is definitely there,” said midfielder Diego Fagundez, who leads the Revs with two goals. “I think after we come home, we play games, we do well, and then we go away, and we get our first win, I think that is something off our backs.”

Last Saturday, midfielder Cristian Penilla and goalkeeper Matt Turner starred in New England’s 2-0 road win over the Houston Dynamo.

Penilla, a midfielder, scored his first MLS goal and drew an assist in his third straight match. Turner set a career high with six saves en route to his first career MLS shutout.

Turner is tied with David Bingham of the LA Galaxy for fourth in the league with 16 saves through four matches.

Montreal is looking for its third straight win and second in a row on the road. After breaking through with a 1-0 win over defending MLS Cup champion Toronto FC on March 17, the Impact recorded another 1-0 win Saturday at Seattle — the team Toronto defeated for the title.

“The team is progressing well,” Montreal coach Remi Garde told the team’s official website. “There’s still a lot of work to do.”

Midfielder Jeisson Vargas scored in each match and Evan Bush collected both shutouts. Like the Revs’ Turner, Bush has surrendered only five goals in 2018 despite facing two fewer shots.

“It’s satisfying to earn two straight shutouts, especially against last year’s other MLS Cup finalist,” Bush told the team’s official website.

Since the start of the 2017 season, the Impact have only four road wins in 20 matches. Montreal has not defeated New England since coming away with 3-2 victory July 2, 2016.