A 2-2 tie on the road is never a terrible result in MLS I suppose.
But, good grief, the game against FC Dallas was a chilling reminder of just how poor Marc Dos Santos is at in game management.
His side recovered from a terrible start to go into the half-time break with a 2-1 lead and they were playing well.
Keeping the ball, making Dallas do the chasing and pressing high up the pitch to keep the pressure off their own defence.
So what did the half-time team talk amount to?
One can only assume it amounted to “Hang on to what we have and make sure we give Dallas plenty of opportunities to get the ball into our penalty area.”
If that wasn’t the team talk then no matter, because that’s what happened anyway. And, with crushing inevitability, the late arrival of Veselinovic (theoretically designed to shore up the defence) resulted in the unlucky Serb heading passed Max Crepeau as the Whitecaps six yard box was crowded with their own players fighting among themselves for the ball.
Last week Dos Santos bemoaned the fact that his team sat too deep in the final stages against Seattle, so it is somewhat baffling that his every change against Dallas seemed specifically designed to encourage just such a mistake once again.
But inconsistency between what he says and what he does is Dos Santos’ super power.
The Whitecaps now move on, with the Gold Cup removing Crepeau (who was excellent) and Cavallini (who scored but was clearly too tired, lazy or important to close down the opposition during the final twenty minutes of his appearance). And we will see if the last two 2-2 ties will be a springboard or quicksand for a team that is clearly mentally fragile at this point.
There are those who describe soccer as a “weakest link” sport.
And, right now, the Whitecaps weakest link might not be on the field.
Time for the Soccer Shorts player ratings!
Crepeau-6.5*, Brown-6, Gutierrez-5.5, Rose-5, Godoy-5.5, Teibert-5, Bikel-6, Alexandre-5.5, Dajome-5, Caicedo-5.5-Cavallini-4