Vancouver Whitecaps Round-up
Vancouver pulled out a hard fought battle over FC Dallas to get back on the winning track last Saturday.
The refreshing of the lineup with some new faces helped revive the team. Omar Salgado’s improving maturity and the energy of Camilo gave the offence another look, and Camilo’s jinking run and curling left footed strike was the highlight of the match.
Van City travels to Columbus this Saturday for a match with the Crew, who sit 7th in the Eastern Conference. Columbus has two losses and a tie in their past three games, while Vancouver’s win last week pushed them up to 3rd in the Western Conference.
There was no action on this front this past week.
Forwards Etienne Barbara and Darren Mattocks remain long term casualties, though Barbara could be healed within the next two weeks. Alain Rochat has also been a longer term concern but will likely return in a matter of days. All other key players are available.
Watching the Wave (Editorial)
Omar Salgado was the number one selection in the 2010 SuperDraft, preceding the number two overall pick of Darren Mattocks in the most recent version of the selection process. He was a very desirable choice as he is very tall, lean and quite skilled.
He also has been a member of the United States U-20 squad.
However, like the vast majority of young players, he found the step up to pro soccer to be a challenge. As a result, he has been featured more prominently in the Whitecaps Reserves side, to continue his development and to build his confidence.
The Reserves is not simply a youth team.
It offers a place for depth players, including savvy veterans, the chance to find more playing time to advance their potential. As a result of his difficulties adapting to the more physical play in the pros Salgado saw little opportunity with the main side last year.
This season looks like it could be a different story. Following their hot start, the ‘Caps went through consecutive draws and a pair of losses.
Coach Martin Rennie saw the need for a shakeup and so he went with a substitute appearance for Salgado, who had done well with the Reserves side. In his first match of the season he brought a great deal of energy and creativity to the Vancouver forward play.
He was then rewarded last week with his first ever start, in a 1-0 victory that broke a four game winless streak.
Salgado once again showed much promise and is pushing for a regular role in the main squad.
As long as he consistently performs like this, he could give the ‘Caps a greater opportunity to diversify their attack.