The Vancouver Whitecaps lost to the Chicago Fire in a fairly uninspiring fashion. The Whitecaps had their moments of quality but ultimately some individual errors and a lack of squad depth undid them. In that way, it was very emblematic of the ‘Caps season. But there will be time for all that later. Let’s take a look at how everyone got on.
Isaac Boehmer: 6.0
It was a bit of a return to form for Whitecaps goalkeepers in this match. Serious defensive failings lead to all three goals but also defensive failings are going to happen sometimes and that’s when you need the keeper to come up big. Boehmer did show the ability to come up big in his previous performances so I would still start him in the Canadian Championship final but this performance was just a bit meh. He did look good coming for crosses so I have given him a 6.0
The Back 3 as a Group: 3.0
To a man, they were all pretty bad. People complain about the Whitecaps’ three at the back shape, saying it has a lack of defensive solidity. Maybe those people have a point but I can’t help but feel that it would look a lot more solid if so many of their centre-backs didn’t completely lose their bottle at the first sign of a dribbler. Javain Brown is normally quite good in those situations but he was having one of his occasional stinkers. Starting with him were Jake Nerwinski and Florian Jungwirth who have been getting beaten 1v1 with ease this season. Tristan Blackmon came on in the second half and 1v1 defending has never really been his strong suit either. The results were pretty disastrous. Also, Chicago managed a remarkable number of free headers. Unsurprising that their second goal came as a result of both bad 1v1 defending and bad marking on crosses.
Julian Gressel: 6.0
You know what? Not bad. The Whitecaps had about three attacks in the first half. He managed to set up Dájome for a good chance and got a reasonable shot off of his own. He wasn’t amazing defensively but he wasn’t brought in to be. I think in matches where the Whitecaps have a bit of a stronger starting team he could be quite effective.
Andres Cubas: 6.0
Probably his worst game as a Whitecap but I would not say he stood out as particularly bad. He just wasn’t able to stamp his authority on the match in the way he has been able to in his other appearances.
Leonard Owusu: 3.0
For one glorious match, last season against F.C Dallas, Leonard Owusu showed what he is capable of. But, once again, Leonard showed up when the Whitecaps needed Jingles. He doesn’t produce the ball progression that is supposedly his strength nearly consistently enough and he’s just awful at defending. Particularly he did a really poor job of closing Shaqiri down on Chicago’s first goal. I’m pretty much fully out on Owusu after initially being excited about the signing. I guess we’ll always have that good performance against Dallas.
Marcus Godinho: 5.0
Meh. He also got cooked defensively at least once but that was the only remarkable moment that comes to mind other than becoming the latest victim of the turf monster.
Cristian Dájome: 6.0
He was ok. Involved in a couple of shots, did a lot of hustling, and gave the ball away a lot. The median Cristian Dájome performance.
Pedro Vite: 6.0
He was ok. Showed some flashes, involved in a couple of decent chances, but didn’t create those chances with quite enough regularity. The Median Pedro Vite performance.
Lucas Cavallini: 7.0
A little on the quiet side but did some good physical battling and scored a very nice goal.
Russell Teibert: 6.0
This was probably the optimal Russell Teibert performance. He brought a bit of energy and, though he did struggle a bit with the ball, it didn’t seriously impede the team. Is it very stupid that so much responsibility is placed on the shoulders of a player whose optimal performance is a 6/10? Yes! But these are individual match ratings.
Ryan Gauld: 7.5
Energetic performance and top drawer assist from Gauld. He has played well this year but thus far he has not been able to find the final product he had last season. However, he has been extremely dangerous in his last two matches so let’s hope that continues.
Ryan Raposo and Brian White:
Neither played long enough to get a proper grade, though it must be said it was White who got leaped over on Chicago’s game winning goal.