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. 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.
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 half-an-hour 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 #33 - LA Galaxy
Match Review (Tres_Tristes_Tigres & AtlantisB)
Following a week in which the top predictor scored 22 points, this week’s high score is dismal 11 points. The lead is shared by six players this week.
The match against the LA Galaxy was highly predictable and shockingly unpredictable at the same time. In the predictable column, all but three of us earned points for the Whitecaps’ poor possession stats (40%), and half of us accurately predicted that the Galaxy would score three goals. In the unpredictable column, we have the initially-bizarre-yet-ultimately-effective lineup and a win for the ‘Caps.
I have enjoyed the bonus category of ‘possession’, but everyone seems to be doing well on it. Are the Caps that predictable? Is the +/- 3 too large? Do we need to trim it down if/when we use it next season? Or is it just a coincidence that we have all gotten it right?
I (Tres_Tristes_Tigres) usually try to pick out the most common lineup prediction errors, but this week pretty much every player who isn’t in midfield had a question mark around them. The best lineup prediction score this week was 8, shared by Airos, Colombian_Southsider77, and AmandaC. Not a single person predicted the win this week. In fact, aside from rtomsheck’s draw prediction, every other person predicted a loss. Even worse, all but three of us predicted a loss by multiple goals!
We now have the final match of the season. I have listed the monthly standings up above, and as you can see it is still very tight at the top. There are several players that could win it all. It could come down to correctly predicting a win/draw/loss while someone picks incorrectly, or maybe it will be possession. Could also be making that key lineup prediction. Does Khimiri get in again? With Adnan back who get’s left out? Has Reyna seen his last match with the Caps? Does Montero start in the final game? There are a lot of question marks for this ‘meaningless’ match, which should make for an exciting conclusion to our monthly standings.
As for our second half standings....the winner is most likely set. For posterity though, I will keep that hidden until I do the roundup at the conclusion of the season.
Good luck everyone and thanks for a great season! I will give more of a ‘goodbye’ in the summary article some time next week (or the week after).