VANCOUVER: Vancouver Whitecaps FC (13W-9L-5D jumped into the top spot in the Western Conference, leapfrogging rivals Portland Timbers and Seattle Sounders FC, with a convincing 3-0 win over Minnesota United FC (7W-15L-5D) on Wednesday night at BC Place.
Yordy Reyna and Brek Shea led the way for Vancouver on this night, each recording a goal and an assist. Budweiser Man of the Match Erik Hurtado also had a fine outing, scoring his second goal of the season and leading the line with another workmanlike performance.
It was another positive performance from a red-hot Whitecaps FC side who have now won three straight matches during a five-match unbeaten run.
The ‘Caps are also 6W-2L-2D in their last 10 outings.
Whitecaps FC head coach Carl Robinson made five changes to his starting lineup after Saturday’s 3-2 win over Real Salt Lake, inserting left back Marcel de Jong, midfielder Russell Teibert, wingers Alphonso Davies and Shea, and Hurtado up front.
It was a team designed to counter – and that’s exactly what they did.
Minnesota controlled 60 per cent of possession in the first half, but Vancouver was the far more dangerous side. Reyna opened the scoring in the fifth minute with a deft touch and finish after a perfect diagonal ball in behind from de Jong.
Then, in the 31st minute, Hurtado finished off a clinical ‘Caps counter, chesting in a fine cross from Shea at the near post.
The result was never in question from there. Only the final score.
The ‘Caps had a flurry of chances in the second half, forcing Loons goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth into a few fine saves. They eventually added an insurance marker in the 88th minute through Shea, who headed in a cross from substitute Fredy Montero to add an exclamation mark on the night.
Next up for Vancouver is a tilt with former Whitecaps FC winger/forward Kekuta Manneh and his Columbus Crew SC on Saturday afternoon at BC Place (4 p.m. PT on TSN 2 – tickets still available). The Whitecaps FC Legends & Stars charity alumni match in support of BC Children’s Hospital, featuring alumni from all eras of the club’s 40+ year history and cast from popular TV series Once Upon a Time and Riverdale, will take place prior to the MLS fixture.
MCMILLAN ‘CAPS CORNER KICK DONATIONS
For every ‘Caps corner kick at home, McMillan donates $100 to the United Way. An additional $500 is donated for every goal scored off a corner kick. This match McMillan Corners for Kids has donated $900 for a running total of $9,900.
Budweiser Man of the Match: Erik Hurtado
Referee: Dave Gantar
5′ – VAN – Yordy Reyna (Marcel de Jong)
31′ – VAN – Erik Hurtado (Brek Shea, Yordy Reyna)
88′ – VAN – Brek Shea (Fredy Montero)
Possession: Vancouver 40.8% – Minnesota 59.2%
Shots: Vancouver 18 – Minnesota 9
Shots on Goal: Vancouver 9 – Minnesota 2
Saves: Vancouver 2 – Minnesota 5
Fouls: Vancouver 15 – Minnesota 11
Offsides: Vancouver 0 – Minnesota 3
Corners: Vancouver 9 – Minnesota 6
45′ – MIN – Michael Boxall
52′ – MIN – Collen Warner
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
1.David Ousted; 28.Jake Nerwinski, 4.Kendall Waston ©, 26.Tim Parker, 17.Marcel de Jong; 16.Tony Tchani, 31.Russell Teibert; 67.Alphonso Davies (11.Nicolás Mezquida 80′), 29.Yordy Reyna (23.Bernie Ibini 63′), 20.Brek Shea; 19.Erik Hurtado (12.Fredy Montero 72′)
Substitutes not used
24.Stefan Marinovic, 8.Andrew Jacobson, 13.Cristian Techera, 25.Sheanon Williams
Minnesota United FC
33.Bobby Shuttleworth; 3.Jerome Thiesson, 25.Michael Boxall, 14.Brent Kallman, (12.Joseph Greenspan 62′), 15.Ismaila Jome; 26.Collen Warner, 7.Ibson; 13.Ethan Finlay, 11.Johan Venegas, 28.Sam Nicholson (21.Christian Ramirez 72′); 9.Abu Danladi
Substitutes not used
24.Patrick McLain, 8.Marc Burch, 10.Miguel Ibarra, 17.Collin Martin, 30.Brandon Allen