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Match Preview - Caps vs Red Bulls

Caps can clinch a first round bye

MLS: Vancouver Whitecaps FC at Seattle Sounders FC Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Matchday 32
Caps vs Red Bulls
Red Bull Arena
Kickoff: 2pm
Radio: TSN Radio

Referee: Jorge Gonzalez
Assistant Referees: Andrew Bigelow, Jose Da Silva
Fourth Official: Ted Unkel
VAR: Rubiel Vazquez

This is another vital match to close out a key 3 match road trip, which has seen them split the first two. Normally, a match against an Eastern team isn’t looked at as being overly important as the Caps in control of their own destiny, even though SKC has a match in hand. The Caps come in as perhaps the league’s hottest team at 9-3-3 since July 5 while the Red Bulls are winless in 8. They could set a new record for points, match the number of wins (16) and away wins (6) this weekend, with 2 matches remaining.

A draw will ensure the Caps will host a playoff match at BC Place. However, a win, will not only ensure a home playoff match, but will earn them a bye directly into the Semi-Final round.

As for their opponents, it’s a “win and you’re in” scenario.

This is one of the few matches going on during the FIFA window, meaning both teams will be missing players.
Vancouver: Kendall Waston (CRC), Christian Bolanos (CRC), Yordy Reyna (PER) and Stefan Marinovic (NZL)
New York: Fidel Escobar (PAN), Derrick Etienne (HAI), Michael Murrillo (PAN)

In previous years, missing even one or two players would’ve caused some nerves for Caps fans, however, on more than one occasion, Robinson has trotted out a rotated lineup and gotten results (Dallas and SKC). Cristian Techera, who missed the win in KC to be with his wife and newborn, will be joining the team. New signing Nosa Igiebor could make his Caps debut off the bench.

It’s pretty simple for New York. A win and they punch their ticket for the playoffs. A loss keeps Montreal in the running.

This will be a definite indicator of how deep the team is going into the playoffs.