Vancouver Whitecaps Archive

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PLASTIC PITCH has launched! Canadian Soccer. Canadian Stories.

PpitchPLASTIC PITCH is ready for download! The app has been approved and the first issue is set to be enjoyed on your smartphone, tablet or device of your choosing. (OK, not totally of your choosing; you couldn’t use an old Commodore PET.)

Right now, the app is available for all Android-ready devices. You can find it Amazon’s app store. You can find it in Google Play. It should launch on Apple in the coming days. The app download is free, issues are $4.99 (five bucks in Canada, we got rid of the penny, didn’t we?) each or a one-year sub (for issues) is $14.99 ($15).

For those who supported this new and unique Canadian soccer magazine through our Kickstarter campaign or other advance subscriptions, the e-mail address you provided is the key. When you download the app, your subscription will be unlocked by that address.

If there are any issues, please contact teamworkpress@rogers.com as soon as possible, and we’ll work to resolve them. As this is the launch of the app and the first issue, we can’t possibly expect to everything go 100 per cent smoothly.

For those who haven’t subscribed, we invite you to download the app and try the first issue. We think you’ll find it filled with fresh voices, interesting art and, most importantly, no cheerleading. Magazine quality hasn’t been sacrificed. You can still subscribe for as little as $15 for a year (four issues). That’s about the price of a beer and a snack at the stadium.
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New Voyageurs’ Cup sked: For NASL teams, short-term pain for long-term gain

PHOTO: CANADA SOCCER/Bob Frid

PHOTO: CANADA SOCCER/Bob Frid

If you’re a fan of FC Edmonton or Ottawa Fury, the Canadian Soccer Association’s announcement of the coming scheduling changes to the Voyageurs’ Cup may have you slightly perturbed. Or angry. Or furious.

That’s because, to accommodate the change to a new summer schedule for the Voyageurs’ Cup, no NASL team will be able to try and qualify for the 2015-16 CONCACAF Champions League.

But you shouldn’t be angry. Anything but. Really, the new scenario is the best thing the NASL teams could have asked for.

OK, let’s backtrack to the announcement made earlier Friday. To try and make more the Amway Canadian Championship — which has been plagued by poor ratings and terrible gates as it went head-to-head with the NHL playoffs — more fan-friendly, the CSA is moving the tournament to the summer, starting next year.

This year’s tournament, which begins April 23 with the first of a play-in two-game series between FC Edmonton and Ottawa, will go ahead as normal. The winner of the five-team tourney gets the Canadian spot in the upcoming CONCACAF Champions League.
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FC Edmonton turns down a couple of loan offers from the Whitecaps

Whitecaps-FC-big-e1329410722765-116x150The Vancouver Whitecaps have an affiliation deal with the USL-PRO’s Charleston Battery in place, but that hasn’t dimmed their close relationship with NASL’s FC Edmonton.

On Monday, FC Edmonton coach Colin Miller confirmed that his club has already turned down two potential loan offers from the Whitecaps for the 2014 season. The reasons? FC Edmonton is already very deep in one of the positions played by one of the players who was offered. And, the other simply didn’t fit with the club.

“Bob (Whitecaps’ president Bob Lenarduzzi) and his staff know that their players need to be on the first team or on the fringes of the first team for us to consider them at the moment,” said Miller. “That’s how strongly I feel about the quality of our squad.”

Last season, the Whitecaps loaned defender Carlyle Mitchell to the Eddies; he was a standout performer in NASL, but was recalled to Vancouver just before the end of the spring season. A Whitecaps’ injury crisis forced his recall, and then he played so well, he wasn’t sent back.

Mitchell is still a major booster of the Eddies; his recommendation was key in central defender Kareem Moses coming to the team in 2014 — along with a personal endorsement made to Miller by current Trinidad and Tobago national-team coach (and former Canadian national-team coach) Stephen Hart.
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FC Edmonton updates its roster, opens up international roster slots

Lance Parker, foreground, and John Smits at an FCE training session.

Lance Parker, foreground, and John Smits at an FCE training session.

On Monday, FC Edmonton’s brass brought in each of its players for face-to-face end-of-season meetings. And, on Tuesday, the club announced the status of all its players who were under contract at the end of the 2013 season.

Before the meetings, we knew this: Midfielder Chris Nurse had turned down the club’s contract offer and will explore free agency (CLICK HERE). He already said his goodbyes to the club and the supporters. All-time leading scorer Shaun Saiko, after being sent to train with the reserves through the final stretch of the season, is now a free agent. And striker Michael Cox, out since September with an MCL injury, turned down a contract offer and he and his new agent will explore options in Europe.

And, the rest of the squad:

GOALKEEPERS:
Lance Parker: FC Edmonton’s No. 1 and the club continue their contract negotiations.

John Smits: The option on his contract was exercised and he’ll be back in 2014.

Norbert Janas: Brought up from the reserve team midway through the year, the young Canadian keeper won’t be back with the Eddies in 2014. He’s now a free agent.
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Camilo wins final Player of the Month award for 2013

Camilo

Camilo

Even after the Whitecaps have wrapped up their playoff-less season, Camilo continues to earn the accolades.

On Thursday, Camilo won his second Player of the Month honour of the MLS season. He got the most first-place votes out of the membership of the North American Soccer Reporters.

Camilo’s been player of the week four times, player of the month twice, and he’s won the Golden Boot as the top scorer in MLS. Had the Whitecaps made the playoffs, even the play-in game, we’d be talking about the Brazilian as the leading MVP candidate. Instead, that vote is wide open.

Camilo scored six times in October, including a hat trick in the final regular-season match of the season after the Whitecaps had already been eliminated from the playoffs.
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Lenarduzzi: Rennie’s dismissal reflects “fine line” between success and failure

Martin Rennie

Martin Rennie

Martin Rennie is out as head coach of the Vancouver Whitecaps.

On Tuesday, the club announced that it would not renew the 38-year-old’s contract.

This after Rennie’s side posted a 13-12-9 record in MLS play this season and lifted the Cascadia Cup, awarded to the team with the best head-to-head record among Pacific Northwest clubs.

Ultimately it was the Scotsman’s failure to lead the Whitecaps to the MLS Cup playoffs for a second consecutive season, and the team’s inability to win the Canadian Championship and the coveted CONCACAF Champions League spot that comes with it, that cost him the job.

The second consecutive end-of-season meltdown will surely not have helped his case, either, as the side went through a rough 1-7-2 run over August and September after appearing like potential Supporters’ Shield contenders in midseason.

“From our point of view, it’s not just this season, it’s also last season as well,” club president Bob Lenarduzzi told reporters at a press conference at BC Place Tuesday. “In both of those years, we started well, and we tailed off toward the end…there’s no doubt there’s a fine line between success and what we would deem to be failure.
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Camilo wins Player of the Week award for fourth time in 2013

Camilo

Camilo

Had the Vancouver Whitecaps made the playoffs, Camilo would be at the leading edge of the who-is-MVP discussion.

He’ll still get some consideration. After all, he’s been the Player of the Week enough times, hasn’t he? For the fourth time this year, Camilo got the weekly honour from the membership of the North American Soccer Reporters.

The Brazilian forward scored three times in a 3-0 win over the Colorado Rapids Sunday. And while the game held no post-season meaning for the Whitecaps, it did allow Camilo to usurp Mike Magee for the Golden Boot as the league’s top scorer.

Camilo scored on a penalty, then got two more in the second half to take the scoring title.
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Camilo claims MLS scoring title with season-ending hat trick

Camilo

Camilo

The Vancouver Whitecaps won’t be competing for this year’s MLS Cup, but they finished their 2013 season in style with a 3-0 win over the Colorado Rapids at BC Place Sunday, thanks to Camilo.

The Brazilian’s spectacular hat-trick fired him to 22 goals, good for most in Major League Soccer, and a worthy winner of the Golden Boot.

He opened the scoring in the 43rd minute, blasting home from the spot after Kekuta Manneh generated a penalty after Marvell Wynne took the rookie down in the penalty area.

Camilo looked as if he was going to allow Lee Young-Pyo to take the penalty, but after a discussion the defender opted to take it to bring the score to 1-0.
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Whitecaps to honour Lee on final matchday of the MLS season

Young-Pyo Lee_thumbVancouver Whitecaps supporters will get the chance to bid farewell to Korean fullback in Sunday’s MLS regular-season finale at BC Place.

Lee announced his impending retirement on Tuesday.

Lee was the Whitecaps’ player of the year of 2012. He has a goal and 10 assists in 64 MLS games since he joined the Whitecaps before the 2012 season.

The team will honour the right back before its match against the Colorado Rapids, the same team that eliminated the Whitecaps’ from the playoff race last weekend.
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Gabriel Torres, the man who ended the Whitecaps’ playoff dream, named MLS Player of the Week

Gabriel Torres put the final stake through the heart of the Whitecaps' playoff hopes.

Gabriel Torres put the final stake through the heart of the Whitecaps’ playoff hopes.

The man who ended the Vancouver Whitecaps’ playoff hopes is the MLS Player of the Week.

Gabriel Torres, whose rocket of a shot was the margin of difference in Colorado’s 3-2 win over Vancouver on Saturday, got the most first-place votes from the members of the North American Soccer Reporters.

Torres scored right after Camilo had equalized for Vancouver on a penalty kick.

The win mathematically eliminated the Whitecaps from playoff contention.
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