Change the lineup against Chivas

Jeff Vinnick

It's time to let some veteran 'Caps off the bench.

Things didn't exactly start off rosy for Joe Cannon in Houston. Just 3 minutes into the contest, Cannon was caught wandering well out of his net, only to be hounded by Andrew Driver. That led to a YP Lee clear that hit the official and stayed deep in Whitecap territory, which led to Adam Moffat getting a chance to open the scoring, but his drive was off target. It was a rare mistake for the veteran keeper, who has played quite solidly since reclaiming his starting position. Two goals, and the first loss of the season, later, and the scribes (like myself) were quick to point out that Brad Knighton has yet to get a start this season.

Then, there's the man who scored 12 goals just two seasons ago, who also can't find a way to crack the lineup. With Kenny Miller gone for International duty, it was a forgone conclusion that Camilo would find his way into the starting 11. There's no reason he shouldn't have, anyways. He was one of the more effective attackers in pre-season, and he seemed to forge some chemistry with Darren Mattocks. In a surprising turn of events, Head Coach Martin Rennie went with the youth movement, starting the young Erik Hurtado in Miller's place. It was a bold move, and one that Rennie had every reason to make. He was looking for speed, for strength. Perhaps he was looking for the desperation and tenacity that often comes hand in hand with a young footballer. In any case, the experiment didn't work, and Rennie subbed him out in the second half. (Insert Captain Hindsight meme here)

I've been preaching the cases of these two players for a while now, so forgive me if I'm starting to sound like a broken record. However, in my opinion, Brad Knighton and Camilo are two faces that need to be in the starting lineup against Chivas USA this weekend. First, Rennie's strategy with the goalkeeping has to be to ride the hot hand. Cannon got a shutout his first match, allowed just one in the following contest, but made a few mental errors and let in two goals against Houston. Rennie now has to give Knighton a chance to reclaim that starting spot. At the very least, Rennie would be starting a former number one keeper that is hungry for playing minutes and desperate to prove he still has what it takes. Now that the team has lost, it's time to hand the reigns over to Knighton and see how long and how far he can run with it.

Up front, Rennie has made it clear that he will not start Kenny Miller this weekend, as Miller is expected to be quite tired from his International call-up and travel, so he may be used as a second half substitute. If that truly is the case, then it simply has to be time for Camilo. He's a proven goal scorer that has had success against Chivas in the past. Have we all forgotten his dominating, 3 point game against Chivas last season? Unless Camilo is fighting some sort of injury, it's time to let him win back his playing time. It's time to let the guy prove that he still is an elite scorer; if you want match changers off the bench, that's not Camilo. That's the role that should be reserved for young players like Manneh and Hurtado, guys that are still getting their feet wet.

What do you lot think? Am I being nostalgic, or is time for Camilo and Knighton to make their mark?

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