Photo Credit Sportswave
Say what you will regarding sports that are played outside facing the elements, the recent WFC2 match Sunday evening had a bit of everything from heavy rain to wind and blowing rain, but the match at Swangard Stadium against MNUFC2 went on as usual.
The match was entertaining but on this night the weatherman wasn’t exactly favorable to not just the players, but also the small size crowd with one mentioning “it’s only water” and that never hurt anyone.
I for one was disappointed at the crowd which was small which looked to be somewhat under five hundred and that’s being generous to those on hand.
The quality of soccer is exceptional and it wasn’t just because Whitecaps brass was on hand but watching future players.
I was impressed to see Whitecaps Head Coach Vanni Sartini spending time with the fans showing his personality which we see at all matches.
This as I was told by some fans is something that more pro teams should practice with their community to embrace the fan base but more so with today’s youth and their families.
Both clubs had chances but at times would slip on the turf and if they fell they would simply slide for additional yardage.
The first part saw no scoring which never happened until the 16th minute after a corner kick that saw Weah send one to the back of the net giving the visitors the early lead.
Vancouver’s J. C. Ngando sent a cross to Levonte Johnson who got his second of the season getting the match even at one.
The Cap’s hoy a corner kick in the 38th minute sending one to Lucas Dasovic who managed to give his team a 2-1 lead just prior to the first half with Diogo Pachedo directing a free kick attempt in extra stoppage time making the score even at the half.
Some might have questioned the call but the 51st minute saw Elage Bah was taken down inside the box giving home squad a penalty kick that saw Caicedo convert making it a 3-2 lead.
Caicedo got a cross to Johnson inside the box in the 70th minute making it a 4-2 contest that saw them add to it in the 84th minute,
Giovanni Aguilar sent a long cross to replacement player Jay Herdman who managed to find the bottom corner giving WFC2 the 5-2 win on what resembled more of a halloween night than the end of April.
The squad hit the road taking on St. Louis CITY2 April 30th with the kick-off set for 3 pm, which is followed up when they return home as they host the Houston Dynamo 2 on Sunday, May 7th with kickoff set for 6 pm.
Here’s hoping they can get more fans to Swangard for an entertaining match and if ticket sales aren’t high, maybe they might reach out to local youth soccer clubs.
For those who missed the above match, despite the rain it was very entertaining and worth the trip out.
NOTES Thanks to VWFC2
– Levonte Johnson scored his second and third goals of the season, putting him in a tie with Kamron Habibullah for the team-lead in goals
– First team players Isaac Boehmer, Déiber Caicedo, J.C. Ngando, and Karifa Yao all started the match. Boehmer and Yao played the full 90 minutes.
Caicedo, who recovered from a meniscus tear in his right knee earlier this season, made his first WFC2 start and recorded the game-winning goal as well as an assist.
Ngando recorded his first professional assist on Johnson’s first goal of the match in the 24th minute
– Lucas Dasovic scored his first professional goal in the 38th minute
– Christian Greco-Taylor made his first MLS NEXT Pro start
– Whitecaps FC BMO MLS Academy fullback Adoni Thomas made his first professional appearance and WFC2 debut, entering the match as a substitute in the 90th minute
– Whitecaps FC BMO MLS Academy midfielder Jeevan Badwal made his second appearance for WFC2 this season
– With Sunday’s win, the young ‘Caps moved up to third in MLS NEXT Pro’s Western Conference standings. The team also leads the league in goals scored with 15
Referee: Mo Mohensi
16’ – MIN – Patrick Weah, 24’ – VAN – Levonte Johnston (J.C. Ngando)
38’ – VAN – Lucas Dasovic, 45’+2’ – MIN – Diogo Pachedo
51’ – VAN – Déiber Caicedo (penalty kick), 70’ – VAN – Levonte Johnson (Déiber Caicedo)
84’ – VAN – Jay Herdman (Giovanni Aguilar)
Possession: VAN 48.6% – MIN 51.4%, Shots: VAN 17 – MIN 17
Shots on Goal: VAN 9 – MIN 6, Saves: VAN 4 – MIN 4
Fouls: VAN 18 – MIN 9 Offsides: VAN 1 – MIN 1
Corners: VAN 7 – MIN 4
35’ – MIN – Rory O’Driscoll, 64’ – VAN – Karifa Yao
75’ – VAN – Gio Aguilar, 78’ – VAN – Vasco Fry