Vancouver Whitecaps: The clip show

You know those sitcoms that always have one episode which is just a series of clips of other episodes?

We all love those because it shows just how much effort has gone into creating something special for the viewer. Right?


So think of this particular post in similar lines. It’s really just a collection of thoughts that either could have been (or have been) just as well expressed in tweet form.

But, because I really care about each and every one of you, here are the expanded and less pithy versions.

The Whitecaps don’t need to sign any more players- Now that it’s pretty much confirmed that there will be no more Designated Player signings this season that leaves any other additions the team might make as more likely to be “squad strengtheners” than “game changers”.

And the last thing Carl Robinson needs right now is more players to think about.

He still hasn’t figured out a way of fitting Brek Shea into his starting eleven, let alone found a consistent role to use Bernie Ibini in.

The recent return of a number of players from injuries seems to have thrown the coach into a fevered state of throwing square pegs at round holes in the desperate hope that one will somehow fit.

More square pegs for the same number of round holes definitely isn’t the answer.

The Gold Cup Golden Boot is a double-edged sword for Alphonso Davies- It’s great that the young Canadian picked up this trophy (and the “Young Player of the Tournament” as well) but that shouldn’t hide the fact that his overall play just wasn’t that stellar.

He did confirm that he was a very good finisher however because Davies always seems to pass the ball into the net rather than opting for the hit and hope style we’ve all come to know and love at BC Place.

But the accolades will only lend more credence to the voices who already think that simply starting the youngster will solve all of the Whitecaps issues.

It won’t.

And what he needs more than anything else right now it to start in a few selected games where he’s able to develop some kind of chemistry with his Vancouver teammates.

That’s hard to do in the heat of a playoff race and it’s even harder to do in a team that plays as though an incisive short pass is a great idea in theory but that nothing beats the effectiveness of frantically trying to pick up knock downs from long punts forward.

Would a coaching change help the Whitecaps?- Last season the Seattle Sounders struck gold by firing Sigi Schmidt and now the LA Galaxy have announced that they hope to find the same gold…hiring Sigi Schmidt.

And after four seasons we know the limits of Carl Robinson as a coach.

For all his brief flirtation with open football earlier in the year he will always revert to his natural belief that benefiting from errors is a better way to go than creating chances organically.

That’s worked well in home games against Atlanta, LA and Seattle who all played with a degree of openness but the tradition is that in the second half of the season the better coaches will have sussed out their opponents and know the best way to shut them down.

One of Robinson’s biggest issues is that he just isn’t a very good “in-game” coach. He rarely makes effective or timely changes and seems mostly incapable of either seeing that his team is playing poorly or even acknowledging the fact.

I could add that an awful of the coaching that he actually does during a game revolves around telling individual players where they should be at any given moment and that’s indicative of either futile micro management or a lack of preparation during the week because these are the things that should come naturally to a well-drilled side.

This is a great read on that particular topic by the way.

For all that though the decision to replace Robinson should only be made if there’s somebody really good in the wings ready to go and who has been well researched by the club.

That’s a highly unlikely scenario, so the best hope for now seems to be that either the current coach can somehow find a way to change his tactical ways in the next few weeks or that a serendipitous quirk of fate throws the best formation into his lap one beautiful Vancouver morning.

Next time out we’ll return to regular programming.


One thought on “Vancouver Whitecaps: The clip show”

  1. One of Robbo’s maxims that he feels the need to vocalize a few times each year is that “he always tells the truth.” In that vein, his thinking process must have been a tad clouded when he threw out post – game against the Timbers that the Caps had played” exceptionally well” in the 1st half.
    It’s a bit weird this year – hardly any castigation in the mainstream media – and with as many wins as losses, taking in the number of injuries, it’s hardly flog Carl time – yet it seems obvious to many observers that something isn’t right with the way the team is playing and perhaps more importantly, how it was constructed. I would like to see the team make the playoffs but real success this year would seemingly justify not changing the structure of player acquisition

    Robert Palmer – looking for clues? I like that you attach a photo – some are obvious, some quite clever and some are down right cruel to the elderly (me.) I would like you to consider to clarify your choice at the end of the following offering – feel the freedom to be smarmy, curt – ” for the tragically unhip – but not everyone can identify 4 lads that could be from old Blighty, the States, 80’s, 90’s etc. Total explanation may not be necessary, but give us a clue, eh. I appreciate your dedication to scribbling about the Caps.


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