|Locale||Toronto and Montreal|
|Teams||Toronto FC vs. Montreal Impact|
|Most recent meeting||May 13, 2015 (TFC 3–2 MTL)|
|Number of meetings||22|
|Most wins||Toronto (11 wins)|
|All-time series||TFC lead 11–5–6|
|Largest victory||MTL 6–0 TFC
(May 1, 2013)
The 401 Derby is a rivalry between two of Major League Soccer's Canadian clubs, Toronto FC and the Montreal Impact. Named after Ontario Highway 401, which connects the two cities, the rivalry is widely considered to be one of the most intense soccer rivalries in Canada, stemming from other sporting rivalries between Toronto and Montreal.
The first professional soccer clubs to be played in either Toronto or Montreal were the Toronto Metros and Montreal Olympique, who both began play in 1971. The two teams played infrequently due to consistent relocation and expansion/contraction in the old North American Soccer League. Throughout the 1980s, different teams from both respective metropolicies formed and folded, rarely aligned with one another at the same season.
In 1992, the original Montreal Impact side formed by the Saputo family, following the demise of Montreal Supra and its league (the Canadian Soccer League). They became a dominant club in the American Professional Soccer League (1993–1996) and the A-League (1997–2003), renamed the USL First Division (2004). The team did not compete during the 1999 A-League season. Their main rivals were the Rochester Rhinos and the Toronto Lynx prior to the latter's move to the USL Premier Development League.
The modern day rivalry involving Toronto FC came into frutation during the first ever Canadian Championship, Canada's domestic cup competition that was formed in 2008. The tournament is used as well to determine Canada's sole berth into the CONCACAF Champions League. It was the 2008 edition of the tournament where Montreal and Toronto played their first competitive game against one another. Played on May 27, 2008, Toronto emerged victorious 1–0 over thanks to a Marco Vélez goal in the 72nd minute in front of a crowd of 12,303 at Stade Saputo. Toronto, being the lone MLS team in the tournament, despite being one of the poorer MLS sides, was expected to ultimately win the tournament. Ultimately, though, the Impact ended up winning the three-way tournament, against Toronto and Vancouver Whitecaps, achieving the first Voyageurs Cup after posting a 2–1–1 record. The title was achieved by Montreal against Toronto on Toronto's home ground, BMO Field. The 1–1 draw which gave Montreal the title on Toronto's home soil further fueled the rivalry. By winning that title, Montreal earned a berth into the 2008–09 CONCACAF Champions League where they reached the quarterfinals. There, they lost to Mexican outfit, Santos Laguna.
Toronto got revenge on the Montreal the following Canadian Championship by scoring six unanswered goals in a come-from-behind 6–1 win at Stade Saputo. Toronto captain, Dwayne De Rosario netted a hat trick in the match. The match also secured Toronto's place in the 2009–10 CONCACAF Champions League, where they did not fare as well as the Impact, only reaching the preliminary round of the tournament. The Reds continued their reign of dominance in the 2010 edition of the Canadian Championship, beating Montreal in both the home and away legs of the competition, tallying an aggregate score of 3–0 during that time. With the arrival of FC Edmonton, the 2011 edition of the competition did see either the Impact or the Reds meet each other.
It was around this time that it was announced that the Impact would be "promoted" to Major League Soccer at the start of the 2012. The announced officially came from MLS commissioner, Don Garber and the Saputo family on May 7, 2010. Interestingly, on June 14, 2011, the Montreal Impact announced a five-year agreement with the Bank of Montreal to become their lead sponsor and jersey sponsor in MLS, the same kit sponsor of Toronto.
Montreal and Toronto played their first MLS competition on April 7, 2012. Played in front of a crowd of 24,000 at Olympic Stadium, the Impact emerged victorious, 2–1, over the Reds. Bosnian Siniša Ubiparipović netted the opening goal of the 401 derby in MLS competitions, scoring for Montreal in the 18th minute. Andrew Wenger, the first pick of the 2012 MLS SuperDraft, netted in the 81st minute to give the Impact the game-winning goal. Dutch international Danny Koevermans netted a consolation goal for Toronto in the 88th minute.
In 2013, the Reds and Impact split the series 1–1–1. A crowd of 38,000 of was on hand to watch the first match of the 2013 series, where Montreal won 2–1. Additionally, in 2013, the Impact won their first Canadian Championship since joining MLS. During their 2013 Canadian Championship run, the Impact defeated Toronto by a 6–0 scoreline, to date, the largest margin of victory in the derby history. It was a six-goal comeback as the Impact lost the first leg of the series, 2–0, to Toronto.
On April 24th, 2013, Justin Braun became the first player to play for both sides of the derby, after he was traded from Montreal to Toronto over the winter break. Collen Warner repeated the feat in 2014 after being traded to Toronto for Issey Nakajima-Farran, who had never played against Montreal before the exchange. Dominic Oduro was the most recent player to see derby action for both teams, moving from Toronto to Montreal, and met his former team for the first time on May 6th, 2015. Canadian goalkeeper Greg Sutton played for both the NASL edition of the Montreal Impact and for Toronto FC, but only ever played for the Reds in derby matches. No player has ever scored a goal for both teams in derby matches.
Off the field, there is intense rivalry between the supporters groups of Toronto and Montreal. Toronto's prominent supporters' groups are U-Sector and Red Patch Boys. In addition to Toronto FC; the U-Sector also support the Canadian national team, and the TFC Academy teams. Additionally, the club is supported by several other supporter's groups including Original 109 who sit in Section 109 of BMO Field, SG114 who sit in Section 114, and the Tribal Rhythm Nation who represent the African, Caribbean and Latin American communities in the Greater Toronto Area.
The largest, and oldest supporters group for the Impact is Ultras Montréal, who are also known as UM02, for the year the supporters club was founded (2002). Additionally, the Impact are supported by 127 Montréal. 127 Montréal formed in 2011, around the time the Impact were in transition from NASL to MLS. In 2011, the Montreal Impact Supporters Association was created to better facilitate the relations between the Club and the Supporters Groups, to promote the supporters culture, and to help with the financing of different supporter group initiatives.
Both Toronto and Montreal play in soccer-specific stadiums and have for their entire existence. Toronto FC calls BMO Field their home, while Montreal Impact call Stade Saputo their home. For marquee matchups, such as games against acclaimed opponents, rivals, or Champions League fixtures, as well as winter-time matches, both teams sometimes play in larger, indoor stadiums in their respective region. Toronto FC has played several games at Rogers Centre while Montreal Impact have played their share of games at Olympic Stadium, which is within walking distance of Stade Saputo.
Toronto's BMO Field is located in Exhibition Place of the city, near the banks of Lake Ontario. Stade Saputo is located along the border of Montreal's Villeray–Saint-Michel–Parc-Extension district and Parc Olympique district. BMO Field currently sits 30,991 (21,566 before May 2015) while Stade Saputo currently sits 20,521.
For statistical purposes, this table includes the NASL edition of the Montreal Impact.
- As of May 13, 2015
|Matches||Wins||Draws||Goals||Home wins||Home draws||Away wins|
|Major League Soccer||8||2||3||3||8||12||2||1||0||3||0||2|
|MLS Cup Playoffs||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|CONCACAF Champions League||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Competition||Date||Home team||Result||Away team||Attendance||Recap|
|2008 Canadian Championship||May 27, 2008||Montreal||
|July 22, 2008||Toronto||
|2009 Canadian Championship||May 13, 2009||Toronto||
|June 18, 2009||Montreal||
|2010 Canadian Championship||April 28, 2010||Toronto||
|May 12, 2010||Montreal||
|Major League Soccer||April 7, 2012||Montreal||
|2012 Canadian Championship||May 2, 2012||Montreal||
|May 9, 2012||Toronto||
|Major League Soccer||June 27, 2012||Montreal||
|October 20, 2012||Toronto||
|March 16, 2013||Montreal||
|2013 Canadian Championship||April 24, 2013||Toronto||
|May 1, 2013||Montreal||
|Major League Soccer||July 3, 2013||Toronto||
|October 26, 2013||Toronto||
|2014 Canadian Championship||May 28, 2014||Toronto||
|June 4, 2014||Montreal||
|Major League Soccer||August 2, 2014||Montreal||
|October 18, 2014||Toronto||
|2015 Canadian Championship||May 6, 2015||Montreal||
|May 13, 2015||Toronto||
|Major League Soccer||June 24, 2015||Toronto||Montreal|
|August 29, 2015||Toronto||Montreal|
|October 25, 2015||Montreal||Toronto|
401 Derby all time top goalscorers
- As of May 10, 2015
|1||Dwayne De Rosario||Toronto FC||Canada||4|
|Marco Di Vaio||Montreal Impact||Italy|
|3||Chad Barrett||Toronto FC||United States||3|
|4||Robert Earnshaw||Toronto FC||Wales||2|
|Amado Guevara||Toronto FC||Honduras|
|Doneil Henry||Toronto FC||Canada|
|Ryan Johnson||Toronto FC||United States|
|Danny Koevermans||Toronto FC||Netherlands|
|Justin Mapp||Montreal Impact||United States|
|Felipe Martins||Montreal Impact||Brazil|
|Andrés Romero||Montreal Impact||Argentina|
|Andrew Wenger||Montreal Impact||United States|
Bolded players are still active players with the team.
- Hylton, Kamal (March 18, 2013). "TFC Dropped by Impact in 401 Derby Clash". Soccer NewsDay. SoccerNewsDay.com. Retrieved April 25, 2014.
- "The 401 Derby, Round 1 - Toronto FC vs. Montreal Impact: The Storystream". Walkingthered.com.
- Palmitesta, Luis (April 7, 2012). "401 Derby – Montreal vs Toronto – Impact needs small tweaks". Global Football Today. Retrieved April 25, 2014.
- Borg, Simon. "Circle your calendars: 2014 MLS Canadian rivalry matches that will be showcased on national TV". Retrieved April 25, 2014.
- Basu, Arpon (May 27, 2008). "Velez gives Toronto FC 1-0 win over Impact". Toronto Star. TheStar.com. Retrieved April 25, 2014.
- Freedman, Jonah (May 7, 2010). ""Passionate" Montreal named as 19th MLS city". MLSSoccer.com. Retrieved May 7, 2010.
- [dead link]
- "Montreal 2-1 Toronto". MLSSoccer.com.
- Tremblay, Oliver (May 1, 2013). "Montreal Impact 6, Toronto FC 0 | Canadian Championship Match Recap". MLSSoccer.com. Retrieved April 25, 2014.
- "Supporters Clubs | Toronto FC". Torontofc.ca. Retrieved February 1, 2014.