The Vancouver Whitecaps shocked the world, or at least the centre of it, by beating Toronto F.C on penalties in the Canadian Championship final. Let’s look at how the individual players got on.
Cody Cropper: 6.5
Cropper stopped about 5 million long-range shots from Insigne and was beaten by an unstoppable header. Toronto F.C didn’t really create much else for him to deal with.
Jake Nerwinski: 8.0
It was thanks to Nerwinski’s excellent play that Insigne was limited to 5 million extremely speculative long-range shots (Insigne’s shots averaged 0.03xG). He also beat Insigne on the dribble several times which I found to be really enjoyable.
Ranko Veselinovic: 9.0
Veselinovic was once again extremely solid. I have to say, I hope nobody has their eye on him because I don’t know what the Whitecaps backline would do without him. Something I couldn’t imagine saying in his first year in Vancouver.
Triston Blackmon: 7.0
He did not pocket Bernardeschi nearly as effectively as Nerwinski pocketed Insigne. But he looked much better playing the ball than he has in previous games and, of course, score the winning penalty.
Cristian Dájome: 6.5
He played with a lot of energy but had a bit of trouble generating offence. He did a good job tracking back and helping with Insigne
Andres Cubas: 9.0
Cubas slammed the handbrake on more TFC attacks than I could count. He was effective in tackling, pressuring, and fouling opponents. If you didn’t know, now you know.
Russell Teibert: 7.5
Not quite as much of a dynamo as Cubas was but pretty much the optimal Russell Teibert performance. He always seems to hit another level in the VC.
Ryan Raposo: 8.0
Looked dangerous going forward and did about as good a job with Bernardeschi as you could reasonably expect.
Ryan Gauld: 10
An underrated storyline of the last handful of Whitecaps games is that Ryan Gauld is fully back. He set up White with a brilliant cross and racked up five key passes in total. He also made Michael Bradley look every one of his 34 years every time the Whitecaps had a dangerous break.
Lucas Cavallini: 7.0
Lots of hustle and bustle and a couple of decent opportunities. No goals but the ‘Caps didn’t spend a lot of the game attacking so it’s to be expected.
Brian White: 8.0
Hustle, bustle, and a goal! A knock-on effect of Gauld being back is that White has looked about 1000% more dangerous in recent matches.
Julian Gressel, once again, got to attack about three times and looked dangerous every time. I’m excited to see how he looks when he’s fully integrated into the team.
Michael Baldisimo looked good, one misplaced volley pass aside. I think there might be something there in a partnership between him and Cubas since both covers the other’s biggest weakness (passing/covering ground respectively).
Tosaint Ricketts continues to be extremely effective in the super sub role. He might not be as quick as he used to be but he’s a monster in those last 15 minutes of a match.
Marcus Godinho came in for an injured Raposo but looked quite good. He picked up right where Raposo left off in terrorizing Thompson.