At 36 years old, Marco Di Vaio is proving he still has plenty of life in his legs. After scoring the equalizer in the Montreal Impact’s 2-1 win over Sporting Kansas City in the opener at the Disney Pro Soccer Classic, Di Vaio nabbed two more in Montreal’s 4-1 victory against the Tampa Bay Rowdies of the NASL on Wednesday, giving the Italian veteran three in the Impact’s first two preseason matches.
Montreal found the back of the net early and often against their second-division opponent. Felipe Martins, the 22-year-old Brazilian-Italian entering his second MLS season, took an Andrea Pisanu pass and beat Rowdies goalkeeper Andrew Fontein in the 2nd minute to open the floodgates.
Di Vaio got his first goal in the 17th minute on a penalty conversion. Tampa Bay would halve the deficit in the 38th minute, defender Takuya Yamada converting a penalty past Impact goalkeeper Evan Bush.
Four minutes later, Di Vaio restored the two-goal cushion before the intermission. Pisanu — the Italian winger who was just signed to a loan deal for the season from Bologna — once again proved pivotal in the build-up. Finding Di Vaio in space, Pisanu freed him on to goal to beat Fontein once again.
After halftime a series of substitutions saw Montreal temper the goal glut. They would earn one more, as second-half replacements Andrés Romero and Sanna Nyassi linked up for the final goal in the 66th minute.
The victory kept Montreal undefeated in preseason play, while Tampa Bay has one more chance to score an MLS hide in group play. Both take the field Saturday in Orlando — Montreal takes on DC United in the early matchup, while Tampa Bay faces Sporting Kansas City in the nightcap.
Did you miss the match? Watch the full replay courtesy of MLS!
(Video to come…)