June 19th, 2024

Lassiter, Ibrahim help CF Montreal end skid with 4-2 win over D.C. United

By Daniel Rainbird, The Canadian Press on May 29, 2024.

CF Montreal midfielder Mathieu Choiniere (left) and D.C. United defender Aaron Herrera battle for the ball during first half MLS soccer action in Montreal, Wednesday, May 29, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Christinne Muschi

MONTREAL – Ariel Lassiter had a goal and two assists and Sunusi Ibrahim scored twice as CF Montreal won its first game since April 13 with a 4-2 victory over D.C. United in Major League Soccer play Wednesday night.

Lassiter opened the scoring in the sixth minute to get the home side on the front foot before an announced crowd of 19,619 at Saputo Stadium. Mathieu Choiniere also scored for Montreal (4-7-4), which ended a nine-game winless run in all competitions (0-5-4).

Belgium international Christian Benteke scored both goals for D.C. (4-6-6) in its fourth straight game without a victory.

The six-foot-three Benteke entered the match tied for second in league scoring. The 33-year-old has scored 13 of United’s 23 goals this season.

D.C. defeated Montreal 1-0 in Washington on March 30 courtesy of a late winner from Pedro Santos.

On Wednesday, the score was 3-2 for Montreal after a thrilling first half that saw D.C. go down to 10 men as defender Matti Peltola picked up two yellow cards.

Montreal’s Jules-Anthony Vilsaint picked off a costly giveaway from Peltola to go on a partial break. He then laid the ball across the box to Lassiter, who beat goalkeeper Alex Bono between the legs for his third of the season to kick things off.

After his hot start, Vilsaint exited in the 19th minute when he appeared to injure his leg while running on the counterattack. Montreal’s medical staff brought out a stretch but Vilsaint ultimately walked off the pitch with the help of a trainer.

Benteke evened the score in the 29th minute while Montreal’s Gabriele Corbo was on the ground injured in the middle of the box.

Benteke, who had pushed Montreal captain Samuel Piette into Corbo, took full advantage by tipping a volley over Jonathan Sirois. Corbo ultimately played the remainder of the match.

Montreal responded with back-to-back goals. Ibrahim, who came on for Vilsaint, connected on a curling cross from Ruan in the 34th minute.

Choiniere followed it up in the 38th by blasting a shot into the bottom corner after Lassiter teed him up on a set piece at the edge of the box. Bryce Duke drew a foul from Peltola, who received his first yellow card, to win the free kick.

Benteke brought one back when he hammered a half-volley over Sirois in the 40th minute.

He became the second player in United history to score four multi-goal games in his first 15 games of a campaign. Jaime Moreno, in 1997, was the other.

Jared Stroud earned his eighth assist of the season on the goal.

Peltola put D.C. down a man three minutes into first-half injury time when he appeared to elbow Ruan on the break to receive a red card.

Montreal controlled most of the play in the second half and finally doubled its lead in the 73rd minute with Ibrahim’s second of the night.

Lassiter juked out D.C.’s Lucas Bartlett before slotting a pass through United’s box to find Ibrahim at the back door.

D.C. failed to test Sirois with a quality chance as Montreal hung on to possession to play out the rest of the match.

NOTES: Montreal wingback Raheem Edwards (abdomen) and midfielder Nathan Saliba (hamstring) returned from injury by coming on as substitutes in the second half. “¦ Select players from the Canadian women’s national team were greeted on the pitch at halftime. The Canadian women play a pre-Olympics friendly against Mexico at Saputo Stadium on Saturday.


Montreal: Visits the Philadelphia Union on Saturday.

D.C.: Hosts Toronto FC on Saturday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 29, 2024.

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