The Vancouver Whitecaps came into their match against the Montreal impact hoping to avoid a 3rd embarrassing loss in as many games. They handed an MLS debut to Michael Baldisimo and deployed Cristian Dájome as a wing back, two moves that were certainly interesting.
The first 15 minutes were cagey with both teams making some vaguely threatening gestures towards each-other’s goal but neither producing a particularly dangerous chance. The highlight was Russel Teibert getting hit in the nuts. But as time went on the Impact slowly began to take control and in the 17th minute makeshift wing back Dájome was exploited with Romell Quioto heading home a Lassi Lappalainen header.
The Whitecaps then spent about about 10 minutes impotently passing the ball around their defence but could not penetrate the Montreal final 3rd. The players once again looked very static; It doesn’t matter if Baldisimo or Ranko Vaselinovic is able to ping a 40 yard pass if none of the players are making runs into space. So, with no options ahead of them they inevitably passed the ball backwards. I took a break from watching to make this humorous video:
In the 34th minute Whitecaps debutant Baldisimo, the only Whitecaps midfielder who seemed at least vaguely familiar with the concept of the forward pass, flashed a free kick just wide of Clement Diop’s right post.
But that little moment of light was short lived as, in the 40th minute, Montreal once again found space down the right channel and Lappalainen easily slotted past Thomas Hasal in the Vancouver goal.
The two teams would go to the half with the score 2-0.
At halftime the Whitecaps made a double sub, bringing on Leonard Owusu and Jake Nerwinski for Ranko Vaselinovic and Patrick Metcalfe. This did seem to give the team some life as they made more attacking forays into the Montreal end. Owusu blasted a shot over the bar and the team put together a few other mildly dangerous moves. Dájome looked much more dangerous played in his natural winger position than as a makeshift wing back (something that should surprise on one).
In the 49th minute there was a chance to get back into things for the Whitecaps as Zarchary Brault-Guillard hacked down Derek Cornelius in the aftermath of a corner. Lucas Cavallini, Vancouver’s record signing stepped up and hit a comically bad penalty that was easily saved by Diop.
In the 62nd minute Marc Dos Santos decided having too many midfielders on the field who could pass forward at one time would lead to the whole universe imploding and subbed Baldisimo off for Ryan Raposo.
The rest of the match left me in an almost fugue like state. I sat serenely as Ali Adnan lobbed a 20 yard pass over his own goal line for a Montreal corner, I barely lifted an eyebrow as Cornelius and Anthony Jackson-Hamel got in a tangle and both were booked, I felt nothing as the game slipped away. This sucks, man.