The Vancouver Whitecaps once again left the excitement to very late in the game and, for the second time in as many weeks, were able to scratch a draw. This time it was Real Salt Lake who was left with a feeling that they left two points on the table.
For more details on the game itself, you can check out our match report here. I will not go onto much detail but let's just say that it was a dreadful showing. Last night's game was easily the worst of the season despite the result. Last week in the comment section of my grade report someone asked what a player need to do to earn an F. A game like last night was needed. Here we go.
David Ousted - B: I heard and read rumblings of some people who placed the blame the Great Dane for the goals. It is total non-sense. Both Plata and Saborio's strikes left the Whitecaps netkeeper no chance and I will go ahead and say that it is thanks to Ousted that the Whitecaps didn't go to halftime 4-0 down.
Matias Laba - B: Once again, the Argentinian DP made enormous contributions in midfield recovering balls, pressing the opposition, and covering some of his teammate's mistakes. His work goes mostly unnoticed but it is and it will be integral to the success of this team.
Sebastian Fernandez - C+: After receiving criticism about his form in the last few weeks, and after losing his spot in the starting XI, Fernandez came on with thirty minutes on the clock and played a little better than in his last few showings. He drew a few fouls and, oh yes, had a rather nice strike at the 94th minute.
Nicolas Mezquida - C: With less time on the pitch than Fernandez, Mezquida came on and showed once again that he is a suitable substitute for Pedro Morales who seems to have a nagging injury. He looked lively and of course, poached the goal that sparked the comeback.
Darren Mattocks - C-: The Jamaican striker did not have a good outing by any stretch. However, in what is becoming a common fashion, he had a solid work rate in what must have been a very frustrating match.
Kenny Miller - D: Unfortunately Captain Kenny had zero impact on the game. Playing as a number 10 and standing in for Pedro Morales, the former Scottish international was away from the areas where he is the most dangerous. His touches were a little off and his communication with his teammates was not on the same page. Although he was not entirely happy being subbed off, his replacement scored the first goal for the ‘Caps.
Kekuta Manneh - F: Yeah, that's right. I flunked Wonderboy. Don't get me wrong, I love the kid but his contributions were non-existent. Those brave runs were easily extinguished by an organized defensive line, he was (as he usually is) caught in offside position, RSL players outmuscled him and he picked up a silly yellow card. As we mentioned in the latest episode of From The Backline, young Manneh is not ready to be a starter. The position that will allow him to succeed is coming off the bench to turn the game upside down. I hope that last night brings the "Should Manneh be a starter" debate to a screeching halt.
Bonus Grade: (I know that the grades are given to Whitecaps players but indulge me for a second here).
Nick Rimando - F: Nick Rimando always plays a factor when playing the Whitecaps. How many times we have seen him make spectacular saves to deny the ‘Caps? Well, once again, Rimando made a difference in the result. Two blatant mistakes gave Vancouver the opportunity to pickpocket a point and disappear into the night like a ninja before Kyle Beckerman's dreadlocks knew what had happened.