We are back!
Welcome to another season of our Vancouver Whitecaps contest “Guess the Starting XI and Final Score”. As is tradition, thanks to former regular Spencer for starting this several years ago. It has grown into a great contest and I am appreciative of him for the original idea. We had a great season in 2017. Congrats again to last year’s winners: First Half (Arjon), Second Half (dfree646), and Non-MLS (AtlantisB). Like last season, we will break the contest up into the three ‘seasons’: first half, second half, and non-MLS. We will continue to have fun monthly ‘bonus’ prediction categories, with some being based on whatever it topical at the time. Last season we had things like “Robbo post-match quotes”, “yellow cards”, “first goal scorer”, and several others. However, to start the season, we will keep March simple. With that out of the way, let’s remind you all how the scoring is done.
P.S. I would love if someone would create a great little graphic that we could use for these articles!
- Contest article will be posted 2-3 days prior to game day.
- We will keep track of first half, second half, and monthly winners so that late joiners will have something to play for.
- I will have a separate ‘contest’ for Voyageurs and Champions League.
- As the MLS season is 34 matches, each half of the season will be based on 17 matches, with your worst two match predictions being dropped. This will allow everyone a few misses or bad guesses throughout the season.
- Predictions will be ‘valid’ if posted HERE prior to the lineup being officially announced (1 hour before kickoff).
How Scoring is Determined
- You receive 1 point for every player you correctly guess to be in the Starting XI. Receive 1 bonus point for correctly predicting 10 starters. Receive 3 bonus points for correctly predicting 11 starters.
- You get 5 points for correctly guessing Win/Lose/Draw.
- You receive 1 point for correctly guessing each team’s final score. Receive 1 bonus point for correctly guessing both teams final score (for a total of 3).
- That means, if you correctly predict the Starting XI, Final Score, and Winner, you can earn 22 points!
After each match, I will tally the scores and update the standings, which will be posted with the following match’s prediction article. I will post three sets of standings. First, the results from the previous match. Second, the monthly standings. Third, the first/second half standings (with your worst two match predictions removed).
Match in Review (N/A) and Preview (Montreal Impact)
The Vancouver Whitecaps kick-off their 2018 MLS season hosting their Canadian rival Montreal Impact. It has become somewhat of a tradition for the Caps to open at home, and against a Canadian rival. Last season, they drew Philadelphia, at home, 0-0. In 2016, they lost 3-2, at home, to Montreal Impact. 2015, it was a 3-1 loss to Toronto FC, while 2014 was a 4-1 victory over New York Red Bulls.
While the Whitecaps have a 1-2-1 record in their previous four home openers, Montreal is looking a bit out-of-sorts to begin the season. This should be a positive for the Caps, as they try to get off to a good start. However, with the Whitecaps, you never know.
I expect a very similar lineup to the one that started their final pre-season match. The big question will be whether Tim Parker will be in the starting lineup, or even with the team, come Sunday.
Not much to say for this opener. Time to get your predictions in!
Known Out (Updated as information becomes known)
Injury: Aly Ghazal, Doneil Henry