Vancouver Whitecaps 1 Carolina Railhawks 1June 11, 2010 at 4:23 am | Posted in Whitecaps Season 2010 | 2 Comments
After all of the fuss over the cold new logo and awful new uniform, it is sometimes difficult to remember we actually have a team on the pitch playing football. Last night was a hard fought affair with a few nasty fouls and no lack of controversy.
Like the Tampa Bay match, the football was nice to watch and both teams passed the ball well in the first half. Carolina is a big team, and thuggish as well, as poor Cornelius Stewart found out when he met Carolina defender Bobo’s shoulder with his jaw. No foul was called.
The Caps pressed well in the first half, looking better in their approach play. They were stringing passes together well, and it was a move on the left side between Steele (finally starting to show what he can do) Zourab T. and Ansou Toure which opened the scoring. Steele slotted the ball to an overlapping Zourab T. who crossed the ball from deep left Carolina territory. The ball took a deflection off of a defender, and came to Toure who backheeled the ball into the net with a lovely finish in the 31st minute. That is the first goal in open play the Whitecaps have scored for a while now. It looked like the Whitecaps would score some more.
Unfortunately it was not to be as Carolina benefited from some clumsy defending from Nelson Akwari . Akwari leaned on Railhawks player Barbara a bit too much and Barbara was only too happy to fall under Akwari’s weight in the penalty box. Add one naive ref and a penalty kick was called. It was 1-1.
The second half was unremarkable but for a great opportunity for Haber from a superb cross from Steele. Haber should have put it away but a bump from a defender put him off balance just enough to head the ball over the bar.
Phillipe Davies tested the Carolina keeper on a skillful looping header as well.
This was a game of two relatively equal teams cancelling each other out in a stalemate. Neither club was able to make the critical breakthrough, resulting in a rather dull second half.
I must say our midfield is starting to work, with Davies looking good and Steele finally starting to find his legs.
In general, our approach play is too slow, and we need to be more aggressive in getting the crosses in earlier so that we can put opposing defenders under more pressure. By the time we get our crosses in opposing teams already have their defenders set up and keepers are easily picking up the high balls. We also need to get some goals from Wes Knight’s spectacular long throws.
Now there is a long break until the next home game. We will have to busy ourselves with the World Cup until the next game!