Impact to give Rivas, Camara first action against MLS leaders Kansas City

Associated Press

MONTREAL - Lineup changes are in store for the Montreal Impact.

Defenders Nelson Rivas and Hassoun Camara are to see their first action of the season and popular midfelder Patrice Bernier is to be back in action for the Impact's first meeting with powerful Sporting Kansas City, coach Jesse Marsch said Thursday.

The Impact (2-5-2) face the Major League Soccer leaders in Kansas City (7-1-0) on Saturday.

''We'll have a lot of new faces for sure, but we still feel we'll put a very good team on the field and go for a result,'' said Marsch, whose team is coming off a 0-0 draw at home with Toronto FC in Amway Canadian Championship play on Wednesday night.

The two defenders were injured in the pre-season and have yet to see action in league play. Both have been practising at full power in recent days.

Rivas, 29, a former Inter Milan defender, was the team's first signing in October for its move from up from the NASL as an MLS expansion team this season. Camara was the team's player of the year in the lower league in 2011.

Marsch did not say if they will form a central defence partnership. Matteo Ferrari and Shavar Thomas have been the regulars in those spots.

''It's easy to work with Nelson,'' said Camara. ''He has a lot of experience. He's very calm in the back.''

Bernier, the Brossard, Que., midfielder who is the club's only local talent, was expected to be a key player when he returned after nine seasons in Europe to join the Impact in MLS.

But after starting the first three matches, the Canadian international was relegated to reserve duty even though he looked to be playing well.

''I don't worry about it, I just have to be ready when the time comes,'' said Bernier. ''It's disappointing, but I won't change my approach.

''It doesn't affect how I train or how I interact with my teammates.''

Right back Zarek Valentin (right calf bruise) and midfielder Justin Mapp (hamstring) remain out of action.

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