The Vancouver Whitecaps began their 2020 Major League Soccer season with some optimism among fans...at least for the first match. The majority of the predictions in our Guess the Starting XI and Final Score contest had the Caps winning their first home match.
After a dismal 2019 campaign, Marc Dos Santos sought to bring in some reinforcements, including prized Canadian striker Lucas Cavallini. While the faces were new, the result was a familiar one for fans as Vancouver lost 3-1 against Sporting Kansas City.
To no one’s surprise, MDS elected to start the same XI he had in the final preseason match in Portland last week.
The new wave begins @CapitalDirectCA | #VWFC pic.twitter.com/IbS9TyABBT— Vancouver Whitecaps FC (@WhitecapsFC) March 1, 2020
In the battle of high-priced former Liga MX strikers, it was SKC’s Alan Pulido who struck first, just over a quarter of an hour into the match.
Peter Vermes’ club controlled most of the play in the first half, with Marc Dos Santos’ side sitting back. Cavallini had a good opportunity in the 21st minute, thanks to a nice pass from Reyna (I think this duo will be fun to watch), but was unsuccessful.
The newcomer to get on the score sheet first for Vancouver was David Milinkovic, who showed some skill to get around his defender, tiptoe along the end-line, look up and see a streaking Jake Nerwinski, who scored his second career goal.
While Vancouver had a short stretch of solid play, SKC closed out the first half strong, jumping back into the lead from a GREAT finish from another new addition Kinda.
The second half saw the teams have few chances, with former Caps striker Erik Hurtado scoring a lovely goal to close out the match and a 3-1 victory for SKC. Why couldn’t he do that when he was with the Whitecaps!
March 1, 2020
At the end of the day, SKC’s high-priced #9 striker capitalized on his opportunity while VWFC’s high-priced #9 striker failed on his first and second half opportunities.
Who is Your Man of the Match
This poll is closed
We will have more in-depth coverage tomorrow from the Locker Room with Sam and our regular Report Card from Caleb. For now though, we want to know what are your initial reactions to the match? I was impressed by Milinkovic and Nerwinski and less so from Dajome. Hwang was quiet. I saw some pros and cons from Khmiri. The club looked better than last season but still a strong disconnect between the offense and defense. It seems they do not have anyone in the middle of the park to guide the ball forward. The club seemed to rely heavily on the wings, especially the left.