Marco Donadel

Frank Gunn /The Canadian Press via AP

MLS Snapshot: Toronto FC 3-5 Montreal Impact (video)

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The match in about 100 words: Well, here’s a formula for ending Toronto FC’s 11-match unbeaten run –

  1. Hope they don’t use Jozy Altidore, Sebastian Giovinco, and Victor Vazquez.
  2. Have your best player ball out of control.

Montreal’s Ignacio Piatti did just that, scoring twice and adding an assist in the first half alone. A 42nd minute own goal from Montreal opened the door to home hope, but Anthony Jackson-Hamel continued his breakout campaign with two goals in four minutes. Tosaint Ricketts scored a pair of late headers to complete the score line.

Toronto FC’s home crowd didn’t see arguably its three top performers of the season, and did see something it hadn’t this year: a home loss. That it was a derby loss won’t feel good for the Reds, who also gave oxygen to their rivals’ flickering playoff hopes.

[ MORE: Bundesliga wrap | La Liga | Serie A ]


Three moments that mattered

12′ — Michael Bradley clears TFC’s runway — Not the finest moment for Captain America, as Marco Donadel opens up his laser and fires.

24′ — “When defenders fall down” — …And when they do it in front of Nacho, inside the 18.

47′ — AJH puts it to bed — It wasn’t Toronto’s night, and a bad back pass met tepid decision-making and one of the sleepy breakout players of MLS in Anthony Jackson-Hamel.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverage | Standings | Stats | Schedule ]

Man of the Match: Piatti

Goal scorers: Piatti (10′, 24′), Donadel (12′), Boldor (o.g. 42′), Jackson-Hamel (47′, 51′), Ricketts (77′, 79′).

MLS Team of the Week — Stars of Week 16

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Week 16 of the 2015 Major League Soccer season in the books, and the latest round of MLS games left no shortage of shocking results, more shocking results and late, late drama.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s Week 16 MLS coverage | Standings | Stats | Schedule ]

This week’s MLS Team of the Week is full of goalscorers, like David Villa and Chris Rolfe, who each bagged twice over the weekend; serial assisters, like Javier Morales and Gyasi Zardes, who each set up a pair of goals over the weekend; and clean sheet-keepers, like David Outsted, who saved two Bradley Wright-Phillips penalties on Saturday, and a defensive trio doing their part in shutouts elsewhere.

Thoughts? Questions? Agreements? Disagreements? (Of course not.) Leave them in the comments section, as always. I’m not afraid to defend my picks.

[ MORE: 2015 MLS Team of the Week archive ]

MLS Team of the Week — Week 16

Goalkeeper: David Ousted (Vancouver Whitecaps)

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Defenders: Laurent Ciman (Montreal Impact), Jorge Villafaña (Portland Timbers), Clarence Goodson (San Jose Earthquakes)

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Midfielders: Matias Perez Garcia (San Jose Earthquakes), Javier Morales (Real Salt Lake), Juninho (LA Galaxy), Marco Donadel (Montreal Impact)

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Forwards: David Villa (New York City FC), Gyasi Zardes (LA Galaxy), Chris Rolfe (D.C. United)

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Former Fiorentina star makes move to MLS, joins Montreal Impact

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The recruiting process was out in the open, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise, but Montreal has added Italian midfielder Marco Donadel to the fold as they attempt to win the CONCACAF Champions League and improve in Major League Soccer (yes, it usually works in reverse order).

A 31-year-old defensive midfielder, Donadel comes to Montreal after three years at Napoli that featured a loan stint to Hellas Verona. Prior to that, the AC Milan youth product spent 7 seasons and almost 200 matches at Fiorentina.

[ MLS: Henry done for New York ]

So out walks Italian striker Marco Di Vaio and in walks an Italian mid in Marco Donadel. Montreal manager Frank Klopas is pretty happy.

From ImpactMontreal.com:

“We are pleased to add Marco to our roster,” said Impact head coach and director of player personnel Frank Klopas. “He will bring a lot of experience and leadership to our team, as well as quality in the middle of the field. He has the right mentality and character going forward for next season and Champions League.”

“I am very pleased with this opportunity to join the Impact,” said Donadel. “Since the first training session in Montreal, the club made me feel like a part of their family. Throughout this process, I felt like the Impact really wanted me to be a part of the team. I would like to thank all those who helped make this possible. I am really looking forward to January to get this adventure started.”

Donadel  played 184 regular season games with ACF Fiorentina, 11 UEFA Champions League games, 15 UEFA Cup games and 14 Coppa Italia games from 2005 to 2011.

Donadel hasn’t been as big a factor in the past few seasons in Italy, so it’ll be interesting to follow how big of an impact — pun unfortunately intended — that he’ll be able to make in Quebec.

Reyna says New York City FC is looking for another offensive DP; Some pretty speculative names to consider

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In a story dealing with New York City FC’s next steps en route to their debut season next Spring, club sporting director Claudio Reyna discussed his desire to land a third Designated Player before the season.

Reyna said he’s looking for another “goal scorer” or “goal creator” to join David Villa and Frank Lampard on the Yankee Stadium pitch in 2015.

And with several other teams potentially bringing in new DP blood — the Galaxy almost certainly, the Red Bulls and Orlando City, too — we thought we’d take a look at some names that could be available to MLS.

[ MORE: Sunday’s Euro qualifying wrap ]

This is purely speculative, of course. Heck, any player is possible with City Football Group’s money. But let’s stay mostly with veteran players in the final years of their contracts or out of contract, and churn a few names out for the rumor mill.

So despite how easy it would be to guess at City spending money to unite Fernando Torres with Villa, we’ll keep logic and reason in mind, too.

– Bryan Ruiz – The Costa Rican winger and captain was producing at PSV Eindhoven, so a full-time move there is possible. But there’s something to the 29-year-old attacker leaving Fulham for America that fits just fine.

Marco Donadel – Bit of cheating here, as the 31-year-old Italian free agent midfielder did some training with Montreal in October while visiting his friend Marco Di Vaio, but also said he’d be going back to Italy before making any decisions. Yet

“In Italy, when something comes out, they make it bigger than what it really is,” Donadel told reporters. “It’d be nice to get an experience in MLS. I feel I’m at the top of my game. I don’t want to come here at the end of my career; I’d like to come here now. I feel I’d be able to do something here.”

– Jermaine Jenas – Still rehabbing from a torn ACL, the 31-year-old former Tottenham, Newcastle and QPR player could positively affect an MLS game for sure and wouldn’t cost as much as some of his peers.

– Macnelly Torres –  The Colombian attacking midfielder is 30 and a free agent, with the sort of passing acumen that would thrive in many leagues. His representation also takes care of Claudio Bieler and Boniek Garcia.

– Juan Agudelo – Still out of contract and still hunting for a deal. Is it not possible that the youngster sees NYCFC or another big market MLS club as an avenue to get back on Jurgen Klinsmann and European clubs’ radar?

– Steven Gerrard – I know, I know… Red for life and all that. But the 34-year-old’s game has regressed a bit this season and his bullet free kicks and football smarts would fit neatly into Major League Soccer. Wouldn’t it be interesting to see Gerrard and Lampard recreating the England set-up in New York City? Yep. By the way, Gerrard is represented by the same agency as Steven Caldwell (Toronto FC), Tim Cahill (NYRB) and Robbie Keane (L.A.). Will he make the $9 million he makes in England? Unlikely, but close.