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Here's why the Impact are playing the Sounders indoors

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Stade Saputo closes up during the freezing months. Stade Olympique takes over hosting duties.

If you are traveling to Montreal, Quebec, for the weekend, bring your winter clothes, and then bring a layer of winter clothes to go over that. Saturday it will drop to either 1 or 0 degrees. Yes, that’s Fahrenheit. Add in 12 mile per hour winds and it will be cold. The good news for Seattle Sounders fans is that the game will be indoors. Olympic Stadium is hosting the game, not Stade Saputo.

The Montreal Impact are blessed to have Stade Olympique available in the winter months. (In Quebec that means November through March.) They last used their alternate stadium against Toronto. It led to this...

MLS: Eastern Conference Championship-Toronto FC at Montreal Impact
Hopefully their paint job is better than this.
Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

The Impact do not have undersoil heating at Saputo, but that’s not the only problem. Again, we’re talking about single-digit temps that could drop into degrees you count on one hand by the end of the game. The team addresses this by playing at Olympic Stadium early in the season, and has since they joined MLS.

“We’re also looking into solutions for the stands, and it’s not just about comfort,” Montreal Impact executive vice president of soccer operations and Stade Saputo Richard Legendre told MLSsoccer.com in 2014. “People say they’ll dress warmly and go anyway, and that's fine, but in March, it’s a matter of safety, and the impact of cold weather on the seats [such as breaks and cracks] is a factor as well.”

Both teams will be playing on an artificial surface unlike others in the league. It is a temporary solution to a wintry problem.

In a few other games this weekend the league may need to use the orange ball.

In Kansas City, Kansas, the forecast at gametime is low 30s and snow. Over in Foxboro, Mass. the projection is for temps in the teens with an outside shot at snow. The Loons home opener is also forecast to be in the teens with small chance of snow.

Seattle fans are unlucky. They will not have an orange ball. They will be warm.