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Saturday, 15 December, 2018

Champions Toronto primed to open their account

Montreal's miserable start set to continue

Sebastian Giovinco of Toronto celebrates
1 of 1

Montreal v Toronto Sky Sports Mix, 7pm Saturday

Reigning MLS champions Toronto began their season with a disappointing 2-0 home loss at the hands of Columbus Crew but they are fancied to get off the mark at the second time of asking against Canadian rivals Montreal.

Toronto bossed every statistic of that opening-day defeat bar the scoreline, commanding 60 per cent of the ball and winning the shot and corner count.

That defeat clearly had no ill-effects on their confidence as after that game they got the better of Mexican powerhouses Tigres in the Concacaf Champions League quarter-finals, winning the tie on away goals.

Providing they have got over those travel exertions, a replication of those performance levels should be enough to beat a Montreal side whose 2017 struggles appear to have carried over into the new campaign.

Montreal finished ninth in the Eastern Conference last term, losing half of their 34 outings, and have started their campaign with defeats at Columbus and Vancouver.

Defensive frailties blighted last season’s disappointing showing – only New England conceded fewer goals than them in their conference – and having conceded five goals already this term it appears that new manager Remi Garde has failed to rectify that area of weakness since taking over in November.

That said, they did score 52 times last term and should at least get on the scoresheet even if it does turn out to be in vain.

Toronto to win & both teams to score
2pts 10-3 general

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