Montreal, QC (SportsNetwork.com) - The Montreal Impact returns to MLS play for the first time in nearly a month as the club hosts the Portland Timbers on Saturday.
Montreal's last league outing was a 3-0 defeat to the Houston Dynamo on April 11, while the team turned its attentions to the CONCACAF Champions League over the past few weeks.
The Impact is still searching for their first win in league play after starting the season with two points from four games, while Portland is also in need of a victory having earned just one win from the last four games.
The Timbers were held without a goal for a second successive match last time out in a 0-0 draw with Vancouver Whitecaps FC, while the club has managed just one goal in the last four fixtures.
Top scoring threat Fanendo Adi has hit a slump for the Timbers as he has failed to score in the last five games. But the responsibility is not on the shoulders of the Nigerian alone, which head coach Caleb Porter acknowledged.
"Strikers have to score goals; they know that," Porter said. "I don't call my players out in press conferences, but attackers know they have to, over 90 minutes, they have to find a goal."
While goals have dried up in recent weeks, Portland's defensive record has been very good with the club yielding only one goal over the past three matches.
"We're not giving up a lot of chances, not giving the other team many looks, so that's a real positive," midfielder Jack Jewsbury said. "Now it's just a matter of getting things going on the other end. The reality is over the course of the season there are times when the defense needs to be better and times when the offense needs to be better. And right now we're looking to find more opportunities and more goals, and hopefully we can continue to keep the clean sheets as well."
Portland should have a good chance at continuing that good defensive record with the club facing a Montreal side that has been held without a goal in three of its four league games this term.
Montreal hasn't been very good in the league so far, but the club will enter Saturday's fixture on the heels of a 1-0 win over Toronto FC in the first leg of their Canadian Championship semifinal series thanks to a goal from Jack McInerney in the 69th minute.