Home MLS Vancouver Whitecaps JDG gets last-gasp winner for FCD, but Whitecaps offer nothing going forward

JDG gets last-gasp winner for FCD, but Whitecaps offer nothing going forward


Surely, “MLS doesn’t want a Canadian team in the playoffs” conspiracy theorists will be out in force after Julian de Guzman’s stoppage-time goal gave Dallas a 1-0 win over the Vancouver Whitecaps Saturday night.

The gap between the Hoops and the ‘Caps for the fifth and final playoff spot is just one point, though Vancouver does still have a game in hand.

But the Canadian midfielder scored his winner six minutes into stoppage time. And Dallas got a first-half penalty — which was saved by Vancouver keeper Brad Knighton — on what surely looked to be an iffy call at best on defender Martin Bonjour. So, surely FCD, got some help, right?

No. Frankly, a team that offers as little offensively as the Whitecaps doesn’t deserve points from matches.

On Saturday, the Whitecaps got one shot on the FC Dallas goal. In their last game, a loss two weeks ago to the Los Angeles Galaxy, the Whitecaps got no shots on goal.

Basically, you could place a ball on the waterfront walkway at Stanley Park, ask a Whitecap to put the ball into the Burrard Inlet, and it wouldn’t go in. The Whitecaps knew Saturday’s match in Dallas was a massive six-pointer, and once again they offered nothing going forward. A first-half toe poke from Jordan Harvey and a long-range effort from John Thorrington were the best chances the Caps could muster. Both of those chances went wide of the left post.

But that’s the thing. When we talk about who had the best chances on Saturday, we don’t talk about the Whitecaps’ attacking players — we are bringing up the names of Thorrington and Harvey, a holding player and a defender. Striker Kenny Miller had yet another inglorious MLS evening, giving the Whitecaps 60 minutes that didn’t involve one dangerous attack. Camilo, the Brazilian attacker, showed his penchant for wanting to take on two or three defenders at a time, and refusing to pass the ball. Is that selfishness, or a case of a player showing how little he trusts his teammates?

It was a disjointed effort from a team that has scored just once in its last five matches. With each passing week, the Whitecaps look less and less likely to score.

De Guzman scored with an audacious left-footed volley from the top of the box at exactly 95:39, with 21 seconds of time added on to go. The lengthy stoppage time came because of an injury to FCD defender George John, and came soon after Blas Perez had scrambled the ball into the Whitecaps goal, but was flagged for offside. But de Guzman, who on Tuesday opposed Perez in the Canada-Panama World Cup qualifier, came to the rescue.

Dallas could have ended things in the first half, but Knighton dove to his right to stop 2010 MVP David Ferreira’s penalty. Martin Bonjour was called for grabbing a hold of a Dallas player in a scrum off the free kick and, while it was a contentious call, just minutes before, FCD was up in arms after a shot from Jackson struck the outstretched arm of Whitecaps’ defender Young-Pyo Lee in the box. Could it be that the Bonjour call was a make-up for the non-call on Lee a few minutes before?

But Knighton, the former Carolina RailHawk, made the stop, then had to leap to stop a Brek Shea attempt later in the first half. Knighton could only watch as, just before the first half ended, Shea played a square ball to an unmarked Ferreira in front of the Vancouver goal, but the Colombian’s effort smashed off the post.

Dallas, despite the time added on, despite the penalty award, deserved the three points. Fully. Completely. And the Whitecaps once again looked a team that might not score again in 2012.


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One Comment

  1. Renzie

    September 16, 2012 at 5:23 pm

    Tell me I’m wrong. The Caps with Hassli, Le Toux and Chiumiento were a vastly superior team than the current Miller and Robson crew. If I see Robson throw his hands in the air one more time blaming one of his teammates for one of his mistakes I will have to be restrained from running onto the field and throttling him.

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