Historic Regular Season Comes to a Close
What a terrific season to be a Vancouver Whitecaps fan. From a start that put the ‘Caps as a top tier team in the MLS, to an end that saw Vancouver back into a playoff spot, it’s been a season to remember!
The regular season ended on Saturday night with a 0-0 draw at Real Salt Lake.
Without further ado, your love ’em and hate ’em for this week’s match.
With the 0-0 draw and the Montreal Impact lose earlier in the day, the Whitecaps earn top spot in the Canadian Championship, and thus avoid a first round fight with TFC in next year’s Canadian Championship.
Instead, they will do battle with FC Edmonton and (hopefully) take on the winner of a Montreal Impact/Toronto FC two leg series.
Not only will the ‘Caps dodge a stiff competition, they will also be able to showcase some younger players against a weaker opponent.
Real Salt Lake had six corners, including several early on. Only one of them even somewhat threatened Brad Knighton and on that lone chance, he snagged it out of the air with ease.
Excellent defending and man marking off corners held Real Salt Lake off of the scoreboard and gave Knighton a well deserved clean sheet!
For just the third time since the beginning of September, the Whitecaps seemed to actually be invested in this match. They had their game plan and they stuck to it, never phasing when the pressure mounted.
It’s the same game plan that gave the ‘Caps such a great start and it could be the same game plan that propels them deeper into the MLS Cup Playoffs.
And the negative side of the well played match by the Whitecaps? They couldn’t get that third win that’s avoided them since the beginning of August.
Just a 2-1 victory over Real Salt Lake in August and a 4-0 beating of Chivas USA in October have brought the ‘Caps 3 points.
They need to change that part of their game if they want to roll deep into the MLS Cup Playoffs.
Big Money, Little Production
For the first time since early July, neither Kenny Miller nor Barry Robson was in Martin Rennie’s starting Xl. It might’ve been rest for the Designated Player’s but it could just as easily be a demotion.
Neither of them, Miller in particular, has merited a spot in the starting Xl. With John Thorrington and Matt Watson impressing with the opportunity, it will be interesting to see who Rennie wants to be in his first team on Thursday.
The Vancouver Whitecaps try to continue their season on Thursday, November 1st against Beckham, Donovan and Keane and the LA Galaxy.