(Montreal) No opponent is to be taken lightly in the Canadian Football League. Even less an opponent who has lost his first two duels and who will play his first home game this season.

It is in this scenario that the Montreal Alouettes (1-0) will play on Friday when they visit the Tiger-Cats in Hamilton (0-2).

The latter suffered defeat in their first two outings on the lawns of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the Toronto Argonauts, perhaps the best team on the circuit and the defending champions.

“It’s clear they’re going to give a bit more and their first game at home, they won’t want to lose that,” safety Marc-Antoine Dequoy said earlier this week. They had two tough games on the road against Winnipeg and Toronto. They are expected to leave everything on the pitch in this game. I have a feeling they won’t want to end up 0-3. »

“It’s going to be a big test: they’re desperate to win a game one and it’s going to be their first home game,” quarterback Cody Fajardo said. They will do anything to end their losing streak. You will have to be ready. »

What the Alouettes have been up to all week: improving every aspect of their game.

“You can only control what you can control. You can’t control how they feel or how they’re going to play, noted head coach Jason Maas. Yes, they are 0-2. Yes, it will be their first home game. We can only control our effort and what we will bring to the field. It comes down to our preparation. From the way we have prepared, we expect a good result. »

The Tiger-Cats acquired veteran quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell over the winter. Levi Mitchell hasn’t been at his best in the first two meetings in his new uniform and he won’t even start the third. Injured in the clash against the Argos, he did not finish the game.

It is the former Alouettes Matthew Shiltz who completed it and it is to him that Orlando Steinauer will entrust the reins of his attack this week.

“It’s the same system, but I know Shiltz can use his legs more (than Levi Mitchell), so that will be something to watch,” Maas said. But we played these guys in preseason games: I don’t know how much they’re going to change their style of play.

“What Shiltz brings is he’s more apt to come out of his pocket,” the coach continued. For the rest, he is a very good quarterback and we know that he will use their game system to its full potential. »

“Over the years you see what quarterbacks are capable of in this league. Matt has been around for a number of years and we know what he’s doing, noted Alouettes offensive coordinator Anthony Calvillo, who knows what he’s talking about when he analyzes quarterbacks. He moves better than (Levi Mitchell). Noel (Thorpe, the defensive coordinator) needs to worry more about that. »

In addition to worrying about the Ti-Cats offense, the Alouettes will have to worry about theirs. After an explosive first series against the Ottawa Redblacks, the Montreal offense fell dangerously short, generating just 324 total yards (63 rushing alone) and 14 first downs.

“We aspire to be one of the good offenses in the league and we didn’t live up to our expectations in the first few games,” Fajardo said. We did enough to win, but I expect a much better performance from us this week, including me. »