With a quiet off-season, Vancouver Whitecaps fans have been eagerly awaiting any exciting news. Today, the good ‘news’ is that the team is about to begin their 2017 preseason. The bad news is that the game will take place Friday at 3:00 am Vancouver time. Nevertheless, it is an exciting time as their first match, against Cardiff City FC, signifies that the MLS is just around the corner; along with CONCACAF.
After playing Cardiff City FC on Friday, the Whitecaps will travel to Newport, Waes, to play Oxford United FC on Monday (game time is 5:00 am Vancouver time). They will conclude their European trip Thursday, February 2nd against Bristol City FC (game time TBD).
The Whitecaps will then travel back to Vancouver, before jettisoning off to Portland for the Timbers annual preseason tournament. The Caps will start their tournament matches on February 9th (5:00 pm) against new MLS squad Minnesota United FC, followed by a Sunday, February 12th (2:30 pm) match against Real Salt Lake, concluding with a highly anticipated, for preseason anyway, match against Portland Timbers on Wednesday, February 15th (7:30 pm).
There are five trialists with the Whitecaps this preseason, each a midfielder: Daniel Lovitz, Attila Filkor, Ross Jenkins, David Templeton, and Isaiah Hudson. Lovitz might sound familiar as he used to play for Toronto FC, while the Jenkins trial has been talked about (too much) already. While Hudson might not ring any bells, the Trinidad and Tobago player is actually a familiar face. He was the unknown youth player taking part in Whitecaps camp last year. Although none of the trialists are expected to stick around, you never know. Hudson will probably be someone to keep an eye on for the long term.
Expect to see SuperDraft picks Jakob Nerwinski and Francis de Vries get an opportunity to play tomorrow morning, however, it appears that the newest Whitecaps Yordy Reyna will not be a part of the first match.
Besides signifying the start of the 2017 season, what are you most looking forward to with this match? Any players you are most interested to see?