Despite not starting a single match this season, the recent injury to Jordan Harvey is nothing but devestating to the Whitecaps. Surprised? You should be. Let's face it; Harvey was horrible in 2011, solid and serviceable in 2012, and displaced quite easily when the Whitecaps upgraded their roster in 2013. So, instead of taking his usual right back spot, Harvey has been riding pine and waiting for his chance to squeeze onto the pitch. It hasn't happened.
At training this week, Head Coach Martin Rennie announced that Harvey had a right heel contusion, and he missed just a day of training. It doesn't sound like a huge deal now, but what if Brad Rusin goes down again, but this time he stays down? If you remember correctly, Harvey was the only defender on the bench when it looked like Rusin might need to sub out. Hell, what if any single member of the back four goes down? Johnny Leveron is still a ways off, according to Rennie, so he's not a great option at the moment. Yes, he is making the trip to Dallas, but we still have no clue what he can bring to the table. With Harvey getting banged up, even if it was just for one training session, the Whitecaps lost an experienced, servicable depth defender, something they don't exactly have a plethora of.
Now, it didn't take Harvey long to recover from his injury, but what if it nags him as the season progresses? We've seen what the hamstring injury has done to Kenny Miller's season so far; and who else remembers the struggles Camilo went through last season with his quad injury? The biggest positive in Harvey's game was that he was going to be fresh legs coming off the bench; can we truly say that now?
I guess the bottom line of this article is that the Whitecaps defensive depth is shallower than Kim Kardashian. If another defender does go down, the Whitecaps will either put in a sub 100% Jordan Harvey, an unknown quantity in Johnny Leveron, or they'll have to re-arrange their midfield, putting someone like Nigel Reo-Coker at the left back position and moving YP Lee to the other side. However, then you're stifling the offensive upside that Reo-Coker brings to the Whitecaps roster. You could always try to put Greg Klazura back there, but then you have the same problem as Leveron; a truly untested player being thrown into the fire. Being fed to the Wolves? Not exactly great for a young players development.
Despite only two substantial injuries this season (Demerit, Miller) the question already needs to be asked: How many more knocks can this team take?
Here's hoping we don't have to find out.