Puerto Rico Islanders An Enigma

October 14, 2010 at 5:36 am | Posted in Whitecaps Season 2010 | Leave a comment

The Puerto Rico Islanders are an enigma. A team which has acquitted itself well and is on the verge of once again getting through to the knock-out phase of the CONCACAF Champions League, also finished as the last seed for the playoffs.  They are capable of scoring goals (they scored 37, five more than us, but have a leaky defence, allowing 35 goals to our 22). On paper, we should  beat them, (we had 45 points to their 37 in the league standings)  but the teams in their conference were stronger than the ones in ours (three teams in our NASL conference made it to the playoffs, 5 teams in the USL Conference made the playoffs). Remember the Islanders kocked the LA Galaxy out of the CONCACAF Champions League as well.  PRI just knocked the formidable Rochester Rhinos out of the playoffs  (the Rhinos finished the season with the most overall points, 54, in the USSF division 2).

What all of this proves is anyone’s guess, but  PRI appear to be on a tear and in excellent form.

One thing which is for sure is that the Islanders are no Portland Timbers.  They can play sophisticated football, and will use guile, trickery and gamesmanship, as well as a skilled passing game, to very good effect.   Make no mistake about it, they are an opponent to be feared.

Our lads were well banged up in a very fierce and physical series with Portland, so look for PRI to make the Caps run by playing a passing game with an emphasis on possession. The Whitecaps must get possession of the ball and keep it for a spell in tomorrow’s game if they hope to come up with a result. This match will be less about physicality and more about football. Lets hope our fine ball players, Davies and Wagner, can bring their game tomorrow. I hope Nash is dropped back a bit into his passing role.

All in all, it looks like it will be a fascinating series. Viva football!


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