Tuesday night was a relatively good night for Montreal Impact in Mexico after they drew 2-2 with CF Pachuca.
It is hard to cheer for a club across the country, especially one that has so many contentious issues with the local squad, the Whitecaps, but there are some reasons why it might be good for Montreal to advance in the CONCACAF Champions League.
Here are two reasons:
1) Like all the Canadian clubs, having Canadians playing in strange and hostile environments is only going to a good thing for the national team. It would still have been good if it were Toronto, or as it will be later this year, Vancouver.
Montreal isn't overly loaded with Canadians at the moment, and Patrice Bernier is likely past his days with playing for the national team, but Maxim Tissot got the opportunity to experience the environment of Mexico, and it will help him down the road when he gets an opportunity with Canada. The 22-year-old defender sat on the bench against CF Pachuca, but if Montreal advances, a trip to Costa Rico could be in the cards. That experience would be helpful to a player who recently made his Canadian debut against Iceland on January 16th, 2015.
The Impact also have four other homegrown Canadian players – Maxime Crepeau likely would have been on the bench against CF Pachuca in Mexico as the backup goalkeeper if he wasn't injured – to also gain experience in this competition. If they can gain the experience from these type of matches in hard to play places, they can not only use it for matches with the national side, but also with other Canadians hoping to make the Olympic squad.
2) In 1992 and 1993, the Toronto Blue Jays won the World Series. What happened after was good for Canadian baseball not only in Toronto, but also across Canada.
Following those championships, young Canadians – guys like Jason Bay, Justin Morneau, and Jeff Francis, among others, watched the Jays of the early 90’s – and decided that playing baseball might be something they would like to do as a career.
Much like the Jays winning, a CONCACAF Champions League win from Montreal is not going to be felt in Quebec alone. It would be felt by all Canadians.
Next week, the Impact will host Pachuca in Montreal. The benefits of Montreal winning could be tremendous and hopefully winning can have a positive impact on Canadian soccer as a whole.