‘Caps earn their first major trophy
Considering the fact that the team has undergone a dramatic makeover, from the coaching down through the playing roster, this early success was a pleasant development.
Vancouver started off with a confident 3-0 result over the Montreal Impact, followed by a clear 1-0 victory over the Houston Dynamo, and concluded the preliminary stage of Group One Sporting Kansas City with a 3-0 decision.
The clean sweep of the group saw the Whitecaps ease to a final clash with country mates Toronto FC, and a tidy finish by Camilo Sanvezzo, the outstanding performer of the ‘Caps inaugural year, brought the team’s first significant piece of silverware.
The tournament was a welcome addition to the Vancouver fixtures list as an ideal opportunity to provide a number of competitive encounters where the team could integrate their new signings.
The defence in particular stood out, with Young-Pyo Lee, Martin Bonjour, Jay DeMerit, and Alain Rochat spearheading a compact, skilled and steady veteran back line that allowed the team to boast a goal ratio of eight scored to none against.
The composure of Lee and Bonjour belied the advantages that their international experience will afford the team this year.
From this steady bedrock, the offence was freed up to attack at will, averaging two goals a game. It bodes well for the team that the goals were spread among the forwards, with Le Toux’s three goals leading Vancouver, and other strikes credited to Camilo, Darren Mattocks and Eric Hassli.
This result has jacked up anticipation for the Champions League quarter-final on Wednesday and next weekend’s league opener versus Montreal.