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Coffee with the Caps, Monday October 18

MLS: Sporting Kansas City at Vancouver Whitecaps FC Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

Good Monday morning Caps fans — no better way to start the week than still feeling the high of a Sunday night victory.

There is perhaps no bigger gap between home and away fixtures for the Caps this year than their early summer match against Sporting Kansas City at Children’s Mercy Park and Sunday night. The away match was a low point of the MDS era, with the Caps flustered and aimless on both ends of the pitch. The team Sunday night was well-drilled, clinical and threw SKC off their game — they were good value for the three points, even if their opponents dominated possession.

It wasn’t the best performance you’ll ever see but the Caps did what Vanni Sartini wanted tactically and they neutralized one of the best teams in the league — the exact kind of team that they will need to hang with if they want to make the playoffs and be competitive. I wrote this in the post match but this was perhaps the perfect embodiment of “the Caps wouldn’t have won/drawn that match under Marc dos Santos.”

The performance was truly a team one, down to the excellent support from subs Janio Bikel and Marcus Godinho. The stretch run is going to be grueling and if the Caps make it through above the cut line, it will be down to performances from their depth players, thrust into a starring role in key matches due to attrition and fatigue, as much as it will be guys like Ryan Gauld or Brian White.

The fixtures are coming fast and furious and one imagines the midweek match in Portland will feature some of the conspicuous absences, such as Lucas Cavallini and Deiber Caicedo. The move to get White and Cristian Dajome 20 minutes of rest, however, was a nice bonus of Sartini’s substitution patterns. And, finally, we wish a speedy recovery to Leonard Owusu, who picked up a knock despite turning in a solid first half performance, and Ranko Veselinovic, whose substitution was hopefully more of a precaution than anything else.

For more details on the match, well, we have you covered. Onto the links ...

Shameless Self Promotion

As promised, I have the details on how the three points were won on Sunday at BC Place.

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