Montreal’s Sirois, Orlando City’s Gallese stellar in scoreless opener

Orlando City midfielder Mauricio Pereyra, center left, Orlando City midfielder Felipe Martins, center right, and CF Montréal defender Joel Waterman, right, watch as CF Montréal goalkeeper Jonathan Sirois, left, dives for the ball during the second half of an MLS soccer match Saturday, Feb. 24, 2024, in Orlando, Fla. (Kevin Kolczynski/AP)

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Pedro Gallese finished with five saves for Orlando City, Jonathan Sirois stopped four shots for CF Montreal and the clubs played to a scoreless draw in a Major League Soccer season opener on Saturday night.

Gallese has not allowed a goal in the first match of a season since he joined Orlando City in 2020, posting a 2-0-3 record. Orlando City has opened each of its 10 seasons in the league at home, going 3-0-7. That included a 2-0 victory over Montreal to begin the 2023 campaign.

Montreal earned a point on the road in its first match with Laurent Courtois at the helm. Courtois managed the Columbus Crew 2 each of the past two MLS NEXT Pro seasons. He took the Crew 2 to the championship match both seasons, winning it in 2022.

Montreal improves to 10-8-4 all-time versus Orlando City.

Josef Martínez, who is ninth on the all-time list with 105 goals, made his debut for Montreal — subbing in the 67th minute for fellow newcomer Matías Cóccaro. Cóccaro, a Uruguayan striker, arrived from Argentina’s Huracán with big expectations.

Montreal travels to play FC Dallas on March 2. Orlando City hits the road to play Inter Miami on March 2.

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