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Guess the Starting XI - Match 18 vs. LAFC + First Half Awards

We have arrived at the second half of the MLS schedule, time to hand out some awards!

Vancouver Whitecaps FC v Los Angeles FC Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Welcome back everyone.

After a goalless draw, we have arrived at the second half of the Vancouver Whitecaps’ MLS regular season. Not only does this mark the halfway point for the team, but it also indicates that it is time to round up the first half of the Guess the Starting XI contest.

Something notable about the end of the first half is that the lowest two weeks, or missed weeks, have been removed from your first half scores. The same two “discounted weeks” will apply to the second half of the season as well, which will be removed at the end of the year.

It’s been a tight race between Isabelt, rvb97 and AtlantisB all first half, but at the end of the day, 2021 Guess the Starting XI Champion Isabelt continues to top the charts, just a single point ahead of rvb97 in second place, while AtlantisB is three points back in third. Truly, it’s still all to play for in the second half.

I also wanted to shout-out Trevsteu, who after starting up the contest late has been making some really good predictions, including the lone perfect score of the first half in the Whitecaps’ match with RSL back on June 4th.

Here are the first half standings. For next week, I will have minimized the week-by-week results from the first half so that the chart is manageable to upload here. On that note, if you see anything that doesn’t seem right, be sure to let me know.

Now, on to LAFC. This match up, evidently, has some familiar faces, and the league-wide buzz has been squarely focused on the black and gold after they announced Gareth Bale just a few days ago on a TAM deal. LAFC is rolling off of a midweek home win by a score of 3-1 over FC Dallas, but will have to make a quick turnaround coming up to BC Place on Saturday.

Both Erik Godoy and Jake Nerwinski are available for selection this weekend, while Thomas Hasal will once again be travelling with WFC2. Deiber Caicedo is out for the foreseeable future with his knee issue from last match, and we won’t have a definitive timeline until he has some more medical advice. Other than that, it looks like the Caps should have the same host of players available as last weekend, as far as I know Sebastian Berhalter and Cristian Gutierrez remain out of the picture for the moment.

Ok, here are the rules of the contest as always:

  • Predictions will be ‘valid’ if posted HERE (or more accurately, whichever is the correct match thread) before the lineup is officially announced, usually about an hour before kickoff.
  • You receive 1 point for every player you correctly guess to be in the Starting XI. You receive 4 bonus points for correctly predicting all 11 starters.
  • You get 5 points for correctly guessing Win/Lose/Draw, this doubles to 10 if you also predict the right score-line along with the result.
  • All this means, if you correctly predict the Starting XI, Final Score, and Winner, you can earn 25 points!
  • At the end of each half, the contestant’s lowest two scores of that period will be deducted from the cumulative standings.