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So, What if He Goes? The Sanvezzo Situation

If Camilo leaves, do the Whitecaps hopes for 2014 go with him?

Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Spor

Man, Carl Robinson must feel a little queasy. Undoubtedbly, he still must be elated he was the one to snag the Whitecaps head coaching gig, but now, he faces the prospect of having 22 goals depleted from his lineup with the mere sound of ink to paper. Camilo Sanvezzo, arguably the club's first superstar, has been the subject of rampant movement rumors throughout the past few days (hours?), with reports you've probably already seen linking him to Queretaro FC in Mexico.

The wee Brazilian has stayed mum on the subject, with the Mexican side claiming Camilo declined his option and became a free agent. (Via The Province) The Whitecaps, meanwhile, have asserted that Camilo is still their property, and they expect him at training camp later this month. It's a soap opera that has murkily unfolded, with each report making Vancouverites feel less and less sure their team MVP will be back next season.

So, what if Sanvezzo does say Sayonara? As Martin McMahon of reported, fines would be dished out, the Whitecaps would get paid, and Camilo could indeed leave Vancouver.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>If Mexes precedent stands, if Camilo does move, he will face 6-week ban (so what) &amp; Querétaro must pay &#39;Caps an amount ordered by FIFA.</p>&mdash; Martin MacMahon (@martinmacmahon) <a href="">January 3, 2014</a></blockquote>

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<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>If that scenario did indeed play out, Camilo&#39;s agent would likely also have his licence revoked for his involvement.</p>&mdash; Martin MacMahon (@martinmacmahon) <a href="">January 3, 2014</a></blockquote>

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It would no doubt make Bob Lenarduzzi hunt the market vigorously for a big name player to replace Camilo, which is never really a sure thing. Camilo knows MLS, has thrived at the level, and is a known quantity, for the most part. Bringing in outside help, even if it is a 'big name', is always a gamble.

However, if Lenarduzzi chose to keep his pocketbook closed, he could leave the top striker spot open for the young Kekuta Manneh. Perhaps he and Kenny Miller could even split the role throughout the season, since both have shown a preference for playing up top. If Omar Salgado is healthy and 'wows' in training camp, then he too could be a candidate for more pitch time. Then there's the embattled Darren Mattocks; Carl Robinson has publicly thrown his support behind the Jamaican International, meaning he would have to be a prime candidate for more playing time as well.

It certainly wouldn't be a Bruce Lee-esque crippling death blow, but it certainly would put a dent in the Whitecaps immediate plans for this season. They claim they haven't heard anything from Queretaro FC, so that means they had to expect to have Camilo, the Golden Boot winner, lead their team into the 2014 MLS season. If he isn't there, with less than a month to go before pre-season training camp, it certainly would be a hurdle for the Whitecaps brass to climb.

Bottom Line; It's better to have him in the lineup. Here's hoping the rumors are just that, rumors, and that Camilo Sanvezzo will be plying his trade with the Vancouver Whitecaps for some time. If not, well, that level of clusterfuckery would be so Whitecaps, wouldn't it?