Supersubs bring glory to Whitecaps

August 28, 2011 at 7:55 pm | Posted in Whitecaps Season 2011 | 7 Comments

"It's about time you scored a bloody goal!"

Who knew it, but it turns out the Vancouver Whitecaps  have two supersubs.  Shea Salinas  came on in the first half in the 33rd minute relieving an injured John Thorrington, who sadly limped off with yet another injury, which looks like a groin pull this time.  Long Tan made his appearance in the 75th minute.  Both players were instrumental in the goal that brought us our fourth victory this year: a 1-0 win over Houston.

The Whitecaps put the poor performance in Portland behind them and came out to play as a team.  It is a good sign of the character of the squad that they rebounded positively to put on a solid display in front of their loyal supporters. Salinas had squandered a good chance in the first half and I was cursing him wondering if he would ever score for the Whitecaps.  His prayers and ours were answered when he scored his first for the Whitecaps in the 86thminute.

Starting eleven

The Whitecaps used the perimeter of their team to score this goal as Koffie recovered the ball in midfield in our end, gave the ball to Harvey who fed the ball to Salinas.  Salinas found Long Tan who was in danger of losing the ball, but won it back.  He fed Salinas with a beautiful ball that put Salinas in alone on the left side.  Shea scored with a low shot to Houston keeper Tally Hall’s left. Long Tan demonstrated a marked improvement from his last game in New Englnd back in May in which he looked out of his depth.

Long Tan has been banging goals in for fun in the MLS reserves league and today he looks like he is capable of holding a spot in Major League Soccer in the future.  This is good news for the Whitecaps because we are rich in goal scoring power with lots of competition for the starting spots to keep the players sharp: Hassli and Camillo have to contend with Jarju, Tan and Salgado for a starting spot.

Tan's the man!

Joe Cannon had a superb game and saved the match for us with two fantastic saves.  He was magnificent in the first half when he dove to his right when the ball was deflected to his left.  He saved the ball with his trailing foot.  Great keepers find a way to keep the ball out of the net, even if it looks unconventional.  He also stopped a point blank header towards the end of the match.  Today Cannon looked like the keeper we hoped he would be.  If he plays like that poor Jay Nolly will sit for the rest of the season.

We should all give Whitecaps physio Rick Celebrini some applause because our two veteran warhorses, Alain Rochat and Jay DeMerit, managed to last the whole game in the centre of our defence.  Both are coming off groin injuries and were not really fit to go the whole match, but they managed to last to the end.  Both players tired in the last third of the game and Houston started getting chances through the middle.  Luckily the boys held on and if we can keep these two fit, our defensive troubles may be over.  This match was our first clean sheet since we beat Philadelphia back in mid June.

I am starting to feel a bit wistful because there is only one more match left  at Empire field.  What a treat that place is, and who knows how we will replace the rolling thunder of stamping on those loose metal seats when we get to BC Place.



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  1. You are forgetting who Tan had to play up top with in New England. I do not think anyone has looked good when partnered with the same F up top. You also forgot his game changing performance in Colorado when he came on for Salgado at the half. I believe Tan has been MLS quality since day 1. He is just getting over looked with all the other F on the team. I mean how would it look if the lowest paid F ($32,000) on the team is getting more minutes than someone like Camelo which in on $1.5K or Salgado $1.2K? It would not look good for the guys that put the team together.

    • One more thing on the New England game. Tan hurt his foot in the 15 minute mark and could not practice for 2 weeks after.

      • Well spotted, Bill! I had forgotten about Tan’s performance in the NE game. I still think he has improved since then. Let’s hope we get a chance to see him some more this season.

  2. No one has launched am anti-Soehn rant yet. Now there is a first!

    • How did you come up with that? No one ever mentioned TS. I think you are making an assumtion and u know what that means? TS wasn’t the only one putting this team together.

      • No one mentioned TS – that is my point. There are 3-5 people that post on these blogs, after every game, that post something about how TS is killing the Whitecaps. Basically they blame him for everything and they are fanatical about their hatred of TS. Now that things are going (a little bit) right at home (3 wins in 5 home games) I was gently mocking their lack of anti-TS rants,

        You said “TS wasn’t the only one putting this team together.” This is a point that I have made numerous time in this and other blogs. The anti-TS crowd has repeatedly said that when TS was the only one that put the team together.

      • as nobody has launched an anti soehn rant I shall be the first. why the hell did we have three holding midfielders to start out with. that only worked once because we were playing an awful team. why do we keep trying it!

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