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Whitecaps Impressive 5 Nil Win

All Photos Credit To Mark Steffens

Locally the Vancouver Giants are looking for a “W” in game one of the playoffs while the Vancouver Whitecaps are looking for their first win in MLS play also this season.

The Whitecaps return home to play their first of three games at BC Place with them first playing CF Montreal in what was a chippy match from the start.

Chippy – yes only due to some extremely undisciplined and foolish play from CF Montreal who were outplayed from the opening.

Montreal for the most part played not only foolish, but aggressive play into the hands of the Whitecaps allowing them to pull out an impressive 5-0 win in front of 16, 046 faithful supporters.

While you might think that pulling out a 5-0 win is an impossible task remembering that they recently defeated Real C.D. España by the same score a short 24 days earlier in the first match of the 2023 Concacaf Champions League.

As you can expect a win such as this has the squad looking to keep the momentum going when they host the defending MLS Cup Champions LAFC  in the first leg of the quarterfinals back at BC Place this Wednesday.
Early in the first half at the 19 minute mark it was Gressel who had his free kick hit the post, but the 23rd minute saw Simon Becher had the fans thinking they were at a hockey game as he was behind Rudy Camacho who made an impressive grab on his sweater pulling him down resulting in a Red Card.

With the ‘Caps to be up in the half it was Javain Brown who won the ball back while in Montreal’s half managing to send a pass to Becher while going down field inside the box connecting with White opening the scoring in the 38th minute.

The Caps have several chances forcing Montreal deep in their zone allowing them to get several exceptional chances managing to tie a team record with 20 shots in a half. 

Ali Ahmed was also getting his first MLS start that saw him explode in  the 43rd minute and get a pass to Becher who managed a low shot off the turf putting the Caps up by a pair.

The tally made him the first ‘Caps player in the MLS era to score in each of his first four competitive appearances, counting his goal at Real C.D. España in the Concacaf Champions League.

As if this wasn’t enough to entertain the fans White had his corner turned aside by Montreal’s Jonathan Sirois only to have Gressel jump on the rebound making it a 3 nil score at the half.

The  second half started where the first left off as the 48th minute saw White get one to Ahmed, who not only put the Caps up  by four but also tallied his first MLS goal.

Records are meant to be broken and this night was no different that saw Becher put the Caps up by a 5 nil margin in the 59th minute putting his name in the record books. 

For Becher it was his fourth MLS goal listing him as the fastest player (ever) to reach that mark in MLS history in only 87 minutes of regular playing time.

The Caps continue their homestand which is slated to be one of their biggest matches of the season with them hosting the first leg of the Concacaf Champions League quarterfinals against LAFC April 5th at 7 pm.

Three is far better than two and number three in a span of seven days has them play a Cascadia matchup against the Timbers on the Whitecaps annual Vaisakhi Night with the kick off set for 7:30 pm.

For those wanting tickets visit

Game Notes from the Whitecaps:

  • The five-goal win tied the largest margin of victory for Whitecaps FC in the MLS era. The ‘Caps also defeated San Jose Earthquakes 5-0 in the 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs, and Real C.D. España earlier this season in the 2023 Concacaf Champions League.
  • The only other time the ‘Caps scored five goals in the MLS regular season was in 2018 in a 5-2 home win over Orlando City SC.
  • Ali Ahmed and Simon Becher both made their first career MLS starts. The duo spent last season with Whitecaps FC 2 (WFC2) in MLS NEXT Pro.
  • Becher is the first player in the Whitecaps FC MLS era to score in his first four competitive matches for the first team.
  • The 2022 MLS SuperDraft pick now has five goals and one assist in his four appearances, including the Concacaf Champions League.
  • Becher also set an MLS record as the fastest player in MLS history to score his first four goals in the league, doing so in only 87 minutes.
  • Ahmed earned both his first career MLS assist and first career MLS goal in his first career MLS start.
  • Julian Gressel (1 goal, 4 assists) is tied with Becher (4 goals, 1 assist) for the team lead with five goal contributions in all competitions so far this season.
  • Brian White scored his first MLS goal of the season, and his third in all competitions including the Concacaf Champions League. His three goals are tied with Becher for the team lead.


Players of Quality: Simon Becher, Ali Ahmed
Attendance: 16,046,      Referee: Timothy Ford

Scoring Summary
38’ – VAN – Brian White (Simon Becher, Javain Brown)
43’ – VAN – Simon Becher (Ali Ahmed, Luís Martins)
45’ – VAN – Julian Gressel
48’ – VAN – Ali Ahmed
59’ – VAN – Simon Becher (Javain Brown)

Possession: VAN 64.4% – MTL 35.6%,   Shots: VAN 29 – MTL 3
Shots on Goal: VAN 9 – MTL 0,               Saves: VAN 0 – MTL 4
Fouls: VAN 7 – MTL 9,                             Offsides: VAN 1 – MTL 1
Corners: VAN 6 – MTL 1

11’ – MTL – Rudy Camacho
18’ – MTL – Joel Waterman
50’ – VAN – Mathías Laborda
52’ – MTL – Sean Rea

23’ – MTL – Rudy Camacho

Following the match the media conference heard Head Coach VANNI SARTINI tell the media 

On the win:

“I’m very happy, I think to be honest, the differences between today and the other games is that we scored the goals. I’m going to anticipate your question, nobody says that we won because they were ten men, because it’s not true, we won because we played much better than them, and even if they were 12 we would’ve won so that’s the thing, and I’m very happy.”

On his team’s performance: 

“I think that we played much better than them, even in the first 30 minutes. We had all this eagerness to try to have a nice night, after three or four great games where we were playing well but felt ‘meh’ at the end of the game. The thing that I’m very proud it’s that we kept the ball for a lot in the second half and we didn’t concede anything even if we were up in the score, we kept working like in the way that we get so I’m really, really happy.” 


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