MONTREAL — Kickoff of Game 1 of the MLS Eastern Conference final was delayed 40 minutes on Tuesday night over at discrepancy in the size of the penalty box at Olympic Stadium.
After the players exited the field following their warmup, workers taped over the sidelines of the box and started measuring as a game official watched. It appeared the penalty box at each end was at least a metre short on each side.
"Due to a technical problem on the field, kickoff will be delayed," the Montreal Impact tweeted.
Seventeen minutes after the scheduled kickoff, the capacity crowd of 61,004 cheered as a worker came out to patiently paint the line with a push-machine. He was followed by a man equipped with what looked like a leaf-blower to dry the freshly laid paint.
"Kickoff at 8:38PM - We apologize for the delay," the Impact tweeted.
The game was originally slated for 8 p.m. but eventually began at 8:40. The crowd seemed good-natured about the delay, however.
"We're somewhat embarrassed," Impact owner Joey Saputo told ESPN, which was broadcasting the game south of the border.
"We have to take responsibility for it," he added. "It's unfortunate it has happened."
The Impact normally play at the adjacent Saputo Stadium but have used Olympic Stadium for big games.