Whitecaps Bore their Way to A Win

April 26, 2010 at 1:34 am | Posted in Whitecaps Season 2010 | Leave a comment

The Whitecaps won their third match of the season, taking their record to two wins and a draw.  This is a great early season record, and no goals allowed so far.  Our defensive soundness is quite a change from last year, when we were leaking silly goals every game.

The only problem is the games have been a bit boring, because we are failing to click up front.

AC St. Louis is playing in their first season and yesterday should have been an opportunity to run up the score with three or four goals rather than just edging St Louis with one.  We only won 1-0.

We started out with Nolly in goal, Akwari, Akloul, Williams, and Zurab in defence, Knight, Nash, Toure, and Bellisimo in midfield and Haber and Edwini Bonsu up front.

Akloul was starting his first match for the Whitecaps and looked very good indeed.  He is big, fit, and comfortable on the ball.  He got up into St Louis’ box a couple of times and won a few headers before he scored in the 19th minute off of a corner kick.  Sadly, he was badly injured on the play and had to be replaced by Janicki.   The replay looks like Akloul either dislocated his ankle or broke his leg when he fell awkwardly after scoring.  I hope it is not as bad as it looked because an injury like that could mean that is it for him for the season.

Had the Whitecaps been more sharp around the net we could have had a few more goals, and I fear young striker Edwini-Bonsu is not taking advantage of the playing opportunities he is getting.   This is his third season and he should be scoring more.

I think we are also missing some quality crosses, though Zurab T. got some useful balls into the box early in the game.  Zurab is very good at defending, but does not get forward as well as Hirano.  I think Hirano gets better quality crosses in.  Lets hope he heals up soon.

There are two problems which are currently holding us up.  One is the injury to Johnny Steele, who is the midfield playmaker we had hoped for.  Basically we are missing a central midfielder with touch and vision.    Belissimo has done a good job filling in but he and Nash should have been cutting this inexperienced St Louis team to ribbons  from the middle of the park.  Once Akloul was out we had the same problem: our back line is not good at passing the ball out of defence into attack.

Sanchez has not yet impressed as we had hoped and he seems to be carrying ten pounds too much weight.  Get on your exercise bike, Sanchez!   Khalfan came on as another sub and looked sharp.

Overall, you have to say the match was a bit of a disappointment.  The 4:00 start seems to make the crowd smaller, with the consequent effect on the atmosphere.   We lost the toss, so the second half was a bit of a bore as the play was all down the other end.

In football, defence comes first.  We have solved our defensive problems but now we lack creativity in attack.  Time to sort it out, Teitur!

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