Whitecaps defeat Chivas 3-1June 24, 2013 at 9:33 pm | Posted in Whitecaps Season 2013 | Leave a comment
The Whitecaps opponent on Wednesday night was Western conference bottom dweller Chivas USA which came to BC Place with a new coach and a legacy of losing.
The Whitecaps were positively awful at the beginning of the match which reflected the rather tired and lethargic (and tardy) BC Place Crowd. It was as if no one was particularly thrilled to be there, especially the players. I could not believe my eyes when, in the first half, Reo-Coker got the ball in the Whitecaps half, looked up, and could only see five whitecaps players in Chivas’ half running away from him with their backs turned to the ball. It was like watching a bunch of kids play.
The Whitecaps were awoken from their slumbers by an early Chivas goal scored by Tristan Bowen. The Whitecaps lost possession in Chivas’ half and after a few snappy effective passes which looked like those executed by a much superior team, Bowen blasted a spectacular shot past a limp Jordan Harvey, who conceded far too much room to the striker.
The goal illustrated the Whitecap’s almost pathological need to concede the first goal in matches to the other team. This has happened in the last four matches, and why the Whitecaps seem to need to put themselves into jail so they can break out later is beyond me. They seem to start games in a coma.
Luckily the Miller/ Camilo/ Teibert axis got to work in earnest just as the first half was coming to a close. Teibert was inspired on the night, doing all that was required of him and more creating two goals. On the first, Teibert’s wing play on the right side allowed Jordan “Sure shot” Harvey to drift into the penalty area unnoticed to smash home his third goal in four matches. Not bad at all for a left back!
Teibert created the second goal by sheer hustle, dispossessing Villafan at the halfway line and putting Camilo through for his goal. In a sense, Teibert won the match virtually on his own and was the key player in the win for the Whitecaps. Camilo got the glory by scoring two goals, but Teibert rescued the Whitecaps who were losing the match before he got to work.
In the second half Chivas seemed more interested in damage control than in getting back into the match. It turned out there was no need to worry about the inexperienced centreback pairing of Leveron and Mitchell, because the ball rarely got near to them in any event; it was in the Whitecaps possession in Chivas’ half almost the entire second half.
The Pressure paid off in the 80th minute when more deep offensive play by Jordan Harvey resulted in a cross getting through to Camilo who smashed home his second.
Though it was fun to see the Whitecaps win again, the evening had a kind of boring feel to it. Perhaps it was because Chivas didn’t really put up much of a fight, perhaps it was because it was a mid-week game that featured poor opposition. Perhaps it was because the standard of football was not that great overall.
The Whitecaps need to send a message to their home crowd that they are going to play consistently good football from the opening whistle. The performance in the first half was terrible until first half injury time. The fans could do better by showing up on time instead of lazily wandering in fifteeen minutes late. Starting the game with a half empty stadium gives the wrong message to the players.
This Whitecaps team seems to do just enough to win rather than being serious about the match from the outset, no matter who the opposition is. The schedule has been kind to the Whitecaps, sending them on a string of three matches verses mediocre and poor opposition. If they play in such a lackadaisical manner they are going to get spanked in games coming up against better opposition.
The Whitecaps seem to play to the level of the opposition they are given on any particular night. They had best get over this and concentrate on playing quality football in every match. This takes pride and leadership. The Whitecaps only showed these qualities in half of the Chivas match. Professional footballers should know and do better.