Nigel Reo-Coker signs with Vancouver Whitecaps

February 21, 2013 at 9:58 pm | Posted in Whitecaps Season 2013 | Leave a comment

The waiting and the wanting is over… Nigel Reo-Coker will wear the jersey of the Vancouver Whitecaps in 2013. Reo-Coker becomes the highest profile signing of the Major League Soccer era for the Whitecaps.

As I have said previously, the signing does not come without risk, as Reo-Coker is coming off of a rough patch, which is an exception in his rather glittering career playing top flight football in the English Premier League. He needed a change and a new challenge to get his career back on track, and Vancouver’s coach Martin Rennie will have the difficult task of turning the player around and getting the best out of him.

If Rennie can recapture Reo-Coker’s form and bring out his best, then we will have one of the best player in MLS at our disposal. Reo-Coker does not score many goals, and operates best as a defensive midfielder. His leadership abilities are well proven; he has captained Wimbledon, West Ham, Aston Villa and Bolton. His experience is broad and at the highest levels of the game. His experience and leadership will be a tremendous asset for the team.

With the arrival of Reo-Coker and Daigo Kobayashi, the Whitecaps midfield, which looked short on creative ability, experience, and leadership, now looks well rounded and virtually complete. There is now serious competition for starting spots in the middle of the park with Reo-Coker, Kobayashi, Davidson, Watson, Leveron, Alderson and Koffie all in the mix.

Reo-Coker’s arrival will also eventually allow Alain Rochat to return to his native position at left fullback. While Rochat did the team a favour by playing defensive midfield when no one else was available, he really is not that effective in this role and should be returned to left back once Reo-Coker is fit. The one-two punch of Rochat and Lee as full backs gives our team a tremendous advantage going forward. Rochat has proven he can score goals from this position and YP Lee is superb when he is firing crosses in.

Look for the fans to be singing “We’re only making plans for Nigel”. With the arrival of Nigel Reo-Coker, our prospects for a successful 2013 season just received a huge boost.

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