whitecaps

Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Chivas USA hightlights + game recap

Whitecaps/ Chivas game summary

The Vancouver Whitecaps have markedly improved on another facet of their game since last year, with their first ever road victory in MLS.

The means of the win was quite untidy, as Chivas somewhat surprisingly dominated Vancouver offensively, but in the end the Whitecaps were able to grind out a result with Jay DeMerit’s diving header in the 67th minute off a left wing cross by Camilo Sanvezzo.

The game was a little unusual in several aspects, as the typically dry, sunny southern California weather decided to take its own vacation out of state.

It rained both the night before and during the game, causing the pitch to play quite soft and slippery at times. Strangely enough, Chivas was able to deal with the conditions more effectively than the boys from the Wet Coast of BC. There was also a goalie substitution in the first half as Joe Cannon picked up a leg injury.

Attendance was very poor, and worrying, for the Chivas franchise on this day with only 7723 bodies counted. (It looked more like 27 1/2)

Coaching

Coach Martin Rennie refined his formation, moving to a 4-3-3 from his preferred 4-2-3-1. There was also a personnel switch in midfield as Gershon Koffie was left out, and Matt Watson came in on the right side, with Jun Marques Davidson shuffled to the centre of the park, and Davide Chiumiento deployed on the left side of the three man unit.

However, Vancouver struggled here as the team could only manage 35.5% possession as opposed to 64.5% ball control by Chivas. The Whitecaps could also muster just two shots on net, though DeMerit did capitalize on his late run into the box.

Goalkeeping

Joe Cannon was the reason the ‘Caps stayed in the game early as he came out aggressively from his net to block a shot from Ryan Smith, but he appeared to pick up a niggling injury in doing so. In the 22nd minute Cannon had to dive to his right to hold another long range effort from Smith. Cannon’s finest save was off a curling effort to the top right corner from outside the 18 yard box by Townsend.

However, late in the half the apparent injury to his thigh forced Cannon off the field, and he was replaced by ex-Carolina RailHawk Brad Knighton.

Whitecaps vs Chivas

Starting XI of the Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Chivas - (Photo by Victor Decolongon/Getty Images)

Defence

The back line remained intact for this match and played well, staving off a wave of attacks by Chivas, who were led by the impressive Ryan Smith. The back line for Vancouver also contributed the only two shot on target through YP Lee and DeMerit’s goal.

Midfield

This was not a game to text home about from the ‘Caps midfielders. They were wasteful in possession and struggled to keep the runs of Chivas in check. Koffie was missed here and they didn’t cope well with the tactical shift.

Forwards

The front line did not have a lot of ball to work with, due to the low possession numbers, but worked hard to check back. Eric Hassli’s presence in the box drew a lot of attention on the cross by Camilo, opening up space for DeMerit’s late run and header for goal.

Man of the Match

Though DeMerit garnered the goal, Cannon’s three highlight reel saves are what keyed the Whitecaps’ sound defensive effort on this night.

Play of the Game

The fingertip save by Cannon off Townsend, after his initial injury, was well worth rewinding for second and even third views.

Video courtesy Whitecaps FC


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About C-Mac

Born in Northern Ireland. Lived in Japan. Resides in BC. Followed the Canucks through thick and thin his entire life, while also trying to grow his Dave Babych moustache. He's a Seahawks 12th man, and since he's played the 'Beautiful Game' for 30+ years he's a Vancouver Whitecaps diehard as well. Connect with C-Mac today!
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  • http://twitter.com/FlyingVHockey Kevin Vanstone

    A damn shame Demerit’s diving header won’t be the play of the game. That save from Cannon is just filthy, a shot that well-placed has the onion bag bulging 99 times out of 100. 

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