Vancouver Whitecaps: Random Thoughts

Some random thoughts about the Whitecaps because, you know, we don’t want to let the wound heal.

The odd thing about Marc Dos Santos is that he clearly knows what is going wrong with his team.

He isn’t some intransigent coach who refuses to accept the evidence of his own eyes. He knows the team don’t keep the ball, he knows they collapse the moment a game turns against them and he knows they sit too deep and don’t create enough attacking opportunities.

He just doesn’t seem able to translate that knowledge into the real world. Which is a shame.

Time for Hasal to step aside? He was the third choice keeper about two months ago and he’s had a great run in the team. But last night felt as though the trauma of keeping goal behind that defence finally caught up with him. Best not to destroy his confidence just because he has a good narrative.

The thing about Russell Teibert is that he hardly ever gives the ball away, but he almost always gives the ball to somebody in a position where they are likely to give it away. A backward pass to a central defender may keep the ball in the short term but, two passes later, that possession is almost always gone.

There should be a special passing stat for players who play this way.

Leonard Owusu has gone from the “I like the look of him” zone, to the “For the love of all that is holy just pass to one of your own players!” zone in quick fire time. So he’s settling in nicely.

Who are ya? Seriously, who are the Whitecaps? Or, more pertinently, who and what are they trying to be? Their formations change by the game and their tactics change by the minute. They”ll never be able to assemble a functioning squad if they don’t know what kind of system they are buying players for.

And what of Lucas Cavallini? He presses defenders, but the rest of the team give up on following suit after about twenty minutes.

No wonder his is frustrated. But he’s been no friend to himself since he arrived. If he could take a penalty kick he’d have a respectable three goals from seven games right now and, against Montreal, he was clearly fighting inner demons as much as anything else.

He looks like a man adrift in more ways than one.

Did the smoke affect the mood of the game? None of us have enjoyed living under the grey canvas of wildfire smoke. The unnatural chill, the hint of ash at the back of the throat, the sense that our lungs are working harder for less and less reward.

So how much more frustrating must it feel to be a professional athlete having to perform in such conditions?

A recipe for tetchiness and tantrums if ever there was one.

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