Montreal Impactsoccer team in the North American A-League. Founded in 1993 by the Saputo family following the demise of the Montreal Supra and its league (the Canadian Soccer League), the Impact was dominant in the American Professional Soccer League (1993-1996) and the A-League (1997- ). It did not compete during the 1999 outdoor season. Its main rivals are the Rochester Raging Rhinos and the Toronto Lynx. It plays its home games at Centre Sportif Claude-Robillard, which has a capacity of around 7,500.
Following a lackluster first year, the Impact surprised the defending champion Colorado Foxes (1-0) on October 15, 1994 to claim its first and only league title. Subsequently, the team finished first or tied for first during the regular season in 1995, 1996, 1997 and 2003 without making it back to the final. Lost to archrivals Rochester in all four playoff encounters, in 1996, 1998, 2002 and 2003. Won the inaugural Voyageurs Cup in 2002 and successfuly defended its title in 2003.
At the gate, the Impact had always been solid within the league before 1999, with average crowds of 4,000-5,000. After disspointing seasons in 2000 and 2001, the team had new record attendances in 2002 (5,000+ on average) and 2003 (7,000+ on average with an all-time high of 9,414).
In 1999, the owners conflicted with the league and withdrew the team from competition. After resurfacing in 2000, the club went bankrupt during the 2001 season when the then-owners were Ionian. Administered until the end of the season by one of the original pillars, Joey Saputo, the club rose from its ashes in 2002, set up as a non-profit organisation owned by the Quebec government, Hydro-Quebec and Saputo. It also attracted many big-time sponsors such as the National Bank of Canada, Bell Canada and Coca-Cola, among others. The team's mandate is to develop local talent and to serve as a representative of Montreal for tourism.
The Impact also played indoors in the NPSL (at the Bell Centre, then at Centre Sportif Claude-Robillard) with many of the same players from 1997-1998 to 1999-2000.
Key players over the years: Patrice Ferri, Rudy Doliscat, Patrick Diotte, Mauro Biello, John Limniatis, Nick Desantis, Lloyd Barker, Jean Harbor, Paolo Ceccarelli, Pat Harrington, Grant Needham, Paulinho, Onandi Lowe, Lyndon Hooper, Nick Dasovic, Nevio Pizzolitto, Eduardo Sebrango.
Current stars (2003-2004): Mauro Biello, Greg Sutton, Gabriel Gervais, Nevio Pizzolitto, Eduardo Sebrango, Zé Roberto.
- Goals: Mauro Biello (59).
- Games played: Nick Desantis (234).
- Eddie Firmani - 1993.
- Valerio Gazzola - 1994-1997.
- Paul Kitson - 1998.
- Zoran Jankovic - 2000.
- Valerio Gazzola - 2000-2001.
- Nick Desantis - 2001.
- Bob Lilley - 2002-2003.
- Nick Desantis - 2004- .
- League Champion - 1994 (APSL).
- Voyageurs Cup - 2002, 2003.
- Can Am Cup - 1998, 2003.