Whitecaps VS Revolution
Saturday, June 18th at 4 pm.
BC Place, Vancouver
TV: TSN 1
Radio: TSN 1040
The Vancouver Whitecaps return to MLS Regular Season action this Saturday, when they tangle with the New England Revolution at BC Place. The league was on break for two weeks due to the Copa America tournament, but the Whitecaps did still play a pair of Amway Semi-final matches against the Ottawa Fury so they shouldn't be too rusty.
The Whitecaps Lately
While the Whitecaps have been scoring goals at a nice rate, the club went into the Copa break with some defensive shortcomings. A 4-3 victory over TFC was quickly forgotten thanks to a dismal 4-2 loss to the Portland Timbers a week later. The 'Caps buckled down with a 1-1 draw against Houston to end the month of May, but will need to string together a couple of nice performances from the backline before they can relax. It certainly will be hard to do without Kendall Waston for the next two matches. That being said, the Whitecaps are a confident home bunch, going undefeated in their last seven at BC Place. (4-0-3)
Bolanos in, Watson, Rivero, Morales Out
We already know the Whitecaps are down a trio of important roster players, with Kendall Waston, Octavio Rivero and Captain Pedro Morales sitting this one out due to suspension. Christian Bolanos has returned from Copa duty with Costa Rica, and the Whitecaps will need some good performances from players like himself, Cristian Techera and Nicolas Mezquida if they're going to pick up the slack from Morales' absence. Also returning to the club is Blas Perez, who was away at the Copa Tournament with Panama.
The Return of Gershon Koffie?
According to WhitecapsFC.com, former Whitecap Gershon Koffie is a serious question mark to play this weekend. According to the interview with Revolution Senior Staff Writer and Editor Jeff Lemieux, Koffie suffered a right knee sprain last month and is still trying to work his way back to the club. Lemieux also says Koffie has been a great fit for the club when healthy, an "automatic choice" for the starting 11.
Speaking of former Whitecaps, it looks like Brad Kinghton had himself a match against the Carolina RailHawks in US Open Cup play. Knighton is currently serving as the backup keeper to Bobby Shuttleworth.
What About the Revs?
The Revolution are having a pretty mediocre season, sporting a 3-4-7 record. That's good enough for 16 points, which puts the club in 8th spot in the Eastern Conference. The Revs are actually one of four teams in the conference with 16 points, so a post-season spot is still very much in striking distance. They'll need to score more goals though; The Revolution have 19 on the year, which puts them around the middle of the pack in the East. (The Whitecaps have 23, by comparison)
The Whitecaps will definitely have home advantage in this contest; The Revs are winless on the road so far this season, with an 0-3-3 record. I would imagine the Whitecaps would absolutely hate to allow the Revs to snap their streak.
The Revs still have plenty of talent on their roster, lead by midfielder (and former Whitecap) Lee Nguyen. He has four goals and five helpers on the year, both which lead the team.
Robbo Contract Talks
According to the Marc Weber of the Vancouver Sun, the Whitecaps and Head Coach Carl Robinson are talking contact extension. Obviously there aren't a ton of details right now, but it's clear the Coach has the confidence of the Whitecaps top brass. Robinson signed his last deal in January of 2015.
The Whitecaps are taking on a poor road squad, although I think it's a wash when you consider Morales and Waston are both out of the lineup. My brain says it's going to be a draw, but my heart says 2-1 Whitecaps.