The Vancouver Whitecaps defeated FC Dallas 2-1 on Saturday afternoon/evening. On the stats sheet, the Whitecaps were outplayed by FC Dallas, but on the scoreboard, where it counts most, the Caps were victorious. There were some good individual performances and some so-so performances. What stood out for you? For reference, a rating of 5.0 to 6.0 is ‘average’.
Now, let’s get into the individual performance ratings.
Maxime Crepeau (7.5): The ‘lower’ grade is not because he had a poor match but rather that he didn’t have much to do. He couldn’t be faulted on the goal, and made a great stretch on the crossing ball prior. Overall, his distribution was fine and he was great at commanding his 6-yard-box.
Erik Godoy (8.0): Another fabulous game from Godoy. He is quietly one of, if not the best, new player for the Caps. He even pulled Waston at the end of the match and was stalking the keeper in the dying seconds. I am not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing when holding a 2-1 lead.
Andy Rose (8.0): Out-of-position for a second match in a row, Rose was very capable and never looked out of place. He has shown himself to be a versatile player for the Caps. For me, he is this season’s Andrew Jacobson -a key veteran that you can rely on and put anywhere without concern that he will make a mistake.
Derek Cornelius (8.0): Derek had a rough start to his season. Granted, he was being played as a left back and not a center back. In his two matches taking over for Doneil Henry he has looked the part of Henry, being a monster in the center of the defense. In my opinion, he is still fourth on the depth chart, but he is someone I am comfortable with should Henry, Godoy, and Khmiri go down and he has to step in.
Jake Nerwinski (6.0): Jake just has not lived up to the high expectations I had of him after his first season. According to @shelterfrmstorm on Twitter, we have been too harsh on the youngster. However, I disagree (of course). In 2018 it took until his final match to register his first assist. In 2019, he has yet to register a goal or assist and really hasn’t looked likely to do it any time soon. Nerwinski has been given more freedom of late, playing more as a wing back but that hasn’t led to much more offensively. Maybe he is not able to venture as far forward because of Adnan, but for me Jake has not really grown much as a player since his fantastic rookie season. If he doesn’t show any growth soon, he might be no more than a ‘league average’ fullback.
Is Jake more than an average fullback in MLS? Let us know your thoughts.
Hwang In-Beom (9.0): In-Beom had a stellar match and looked more like his old, dynamic, self. I hope that this is a sign of things to come for the second half. After the match MDS made an important point that I feel we should all consider. He said that In-Beom should be judged for his 2020 season and not this season. I agree. The travel, both in MLS and internationally, along with playing 60 matches in the past year, according to MDS, and the culture change, learning English, etc., is a lot for someone to handle. Give him time to settle in. For me, the key right now is that you see those moments of brilliance and you can see the potential that will, hopefully, come in 2020.
They have to be trolling us all right https://t.co/qX3jjeLGSJ— Eighty Six Forever (@86forever) May 26, 2019
Jon Erice (9.0): Another player that has really come on of late. He has looked good all season, but he has really stepped it up the last few matches. It looks like he has settled in and provided some important stability to the middle of the park.
An underrated signing imo, although I don't think he's the long term answer in holding midfielder just bc of his age— Eighty Six Forever (@86forever) May 26, 2019
He's got a quality we've been lacking in the midfield for years, at least in terms of his composure— Between The Sticks (@btsvancity) May 26, 2019
Russell Teibert (6.5): The last few games I haven’t even noticed Teibert has been on the field. I am not sure whether that is a good thing or a bad thing. Teibert has his moments where he looks excellent as a two-way player, but then at other times he seems to disappear. Maybe it is correlated with the number of non-regular starters there are in the lineup. Maybe with more bench players he plays more conservative. I am not sure.
Ali Adnan (7.0): Adnan (and Venuto) is a difficult case as I see two things from him almost every match -a person that is talented offensively and a person that is a little too arrogant. Many on Twitter noted
What is going on between Adnan and Cornelius. Been arguing all game. Adnan clearly upset about something at the back— Ben Phillips (@SportsBen18) May 25, 2019
His second outburst was at Hwang, Montero stepped in as well. Guess that goal is what he wanted— Ben Phillips (@SportsBen18) May 25, 2019
But apparently he is a fabulous teammate, a personality in the locker room, and bffs with Hwang In-Beom. Maybe he is someone who is passionate and competitive and a strong believer in his abilities. Sure, it doesn’t always work out (see penalty kick) but there is a balance that needs to be struck between confidence and cocky. He is ‘only’ 25, so he is still a bit young. While I do worry about his lack of tracking back, his barking at teammates, and his arrogance on the field, it would appear that it isn’t really an issue, at least on the surface, for his teammates. Maybe too players know he will be gone in a month and a half so they just put up with it?
What are your thoughts on Adnan?
Lucas Venuto (7.0): Like Adnan, Venuto is a difficult case. He scored a fantastic goal that required patience and being calm under pressure. We saw later in the match what being rushed can lead to for Aranguiz.
At the same time though, he had some poor moments and had a chance to really put the match away, but pushed the ball too far past the keeper. Reflecting on that while I am writing, the turf could have played a role in that one. Instinct to playing on grass, so he hits it a bit harder, only for it to roll faster on the turf? Okay, maybe that is true. Anyway, he has shown moments and I LOVED how hard he was running and pushing at the end of the match, but there just seems to be something missing right now. Like so many of the other new arrivals, MDS suggested that Venuto should be judged more on his 2020 than on 2019. Fair enough. We will see how things go over time.
Fredy Montero (7.5): Honestly, I am not sure what grade to give Montero. I think that he played well. He was great on the Venuto goal. He led the line well and he showed leadership up front. I feel like he had a good, non-flashy, game. I don’t know. What are your thoughts?
Those are my ratings for the Caps 2-1 victory over FC Dallas. What ratings do you give out? What are your thoughts on my questions about specific players? Anything you want to add? What about PC, and Bair’s debut?