By hook or by crook the Whitecaps have somehow maneuvered themselves into a position where making the playoffs can officially be classed as “not inconceivable”.
Although the first half of the 2-1 win against Austin only served to remind us all of their shortcomings.
The better team against a poor opposition, they lacked the will and the ability to press home their advantage and went into the break trailing by a goal.
Then Marc Dos Santos broke from tradition and introduced a substitute at half time. And Ryan Gauld made all the difference.
Not so much in his play (although that obviously helped) but more in the overall sense of belief he seemed to inspire in his teammates.
The belief that, if they passed the ball forward quickly they might create more chances than if they passed the ball backwards slowly.
And it worked!
Gauld was involved in both goals and they now come home to BC Place for a Saturday evening game that isn’t just about seeing them in the flesh, but is also one where they have some skin in the game in terms of the postseason.
There’s been a lot of hope built on that return and anybody who has followed this team for more than a few months will know that hope is the most dangerous feeling of all.
But never mind, we should enjoy the moments while we can.
Somewhat ironic of course that they finally figure out how to win on the road in the final game before they embark on a run of home matches. But there we are.
Next stop BC Place!
Time for the Soccer Shorts player ratings.
Crepeau-5, Brown-4.5, Nerwisnki-5.5*, Veselinovic-5, Rose=5, Teibert-4.5, Bikel-5.5, Owusu-4.5, Dajome-5, Caicedo-4, White-4.5 (Gauld-5.5).