Vancouver Whitecaps vs Sporting KC Game Recap

Posted: April 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

VANCOUVER, B.C. – The Vancouver Whitecaps took to the pitch last night for 6th game of the season against the best team in MLS Sporting KC. Coming into the game Sporting KC had allowed only 1 shot on goal in the previous 335 minutes. For the Whitecaps to win they would have to put forth their best effort of the season. Unfortunately the Whitecaps best game play came when it was too late with the game out of reach. The Whitecaps fell to Sporting Kansas City 3-1.

The game started off with a tackle from hard-nosed Whitecaps striker Eric Hassli in the 6th minute. Sporting KC striker Kei Kamara went down like he was shot but came back onto the pitch a few minutes later none the worse for ware. Hassli who is known for racking up yellow and reds cards picked up his third yellow of the season. In the 18th minute a hush fellow over the crowd when Vancouver’s leading goal-scorer Sebastien Le Toux fell awkwardly into some ad signage. Sporting KC defender and fellow Frenchman Aurelien Collin pushed an off-balanced Le Toux from behind and picked up a yellow card from referee Baldomero Toledo. Le Toux stayed down for a minute but got up and continued on.

Sporting KC opened the scoring in the 24th minute. Aurelien Collin found the back of the net at the back post when the ball pinged around in front of the Whitecaps net. Sporting KC striker Bobby Convey crossed the ball into the area where it eventually found its way to Collin for his third goal of the season. Vancouver had a great opportunity to tie the game in the 27th minute when Young-Pyo Lee came down the right side and crossed the ball dangerously towards the Kansas City net. Sebastien Le Toux dove and got his head on the ball, however Sporting KC goalie Jimmy Nielsen made a wonderful save. Despite having a 10 day break in between games the Whitecaps started off slow and looked outpaced at times during the opening half. Whitecaps captain Jay DeMerit talked about the team’s performance after the game. “I don’t think we had any lack of energy tonight, it’s just a matter of not really taking our opportunities up front and not doing our responsibilities defensively so all of those things came into the performance tonight.”

Neither team made any substitutions at halftime. With the amount of firepower and playmakers Sporting Kansas City has the Whitecaps could ill afford to give their opponent an own goal but that’s exactly what happened. Sporting KC had a throw in that ended up going off Whitecaps defender Martin Bonjour’s chest past a surprised Whitecaps goalie Joe Cannon in the 51st minute.

After the own goal both teams made their first substitutions of the game. Sporting KC switched strikers by bringing on Jacob Peterson for Bobby Convey in the 52nd minute. The Whitecaps brought on fan favourite Camilo for an injured looking John Thorrington in the 60th minute. The substitute that caused the biggest noise from the crowd was twenty-two year-old Sporting KC forward Teal Bunbury who came on for C.J. Sapong in the 62nd minute. Bunbury was born in Hamilton, Ontario to a Canadian father and American mother and moved to Prior Lake, Minnesota as a child. Bunbury’s father Alex is one of the most capped players in Canadian Men’s Soccer history and despite that his son Teal chooses to play for the United States. No wonder the BC Place Stadium crowd of 15,382 booooed Bunbury. Bunbury wasn’t upset after the game and had this to say. “The same thing happened last year so I was expecting the same thing and that’s how it goes sometimes in football. I’ve got to just worry about my team, my teammates and do my job and try to keep those distractions out of my head.”

Sporting KC leading goal scorer Kei Kamara added to his team lead in goals (4) in the 65th minute when he got a quick touch on the ball thanks to right back Chance Myers cross to the back post. Whitecaps goalie Joe Cannon was cleanly beaten and had no chance to make the save.

The undervalued and forgotten Omar Salgado made his season debut in the 78th minute and helped setup the lone goal for the Vancouver Whitecaps. Salgado sent in a cross in the 79th minute. Camilo was able to head the ball which went off the crossbar towards Sebastien Le Toux. Le Toux hammered the ball home for his team leading 3rd goal of the season. Sporting KC captain and goalie Jimmy Nielsen was incensed and thought the play should have been stopped for an offside. Nielsen ran down the sidelines to protest the goal and was sent away with a yellow card. Nielsen had to be busy in the last ten minutes of the game when the Whitecaps mounted a strong effort to try and make it a one goal game. Nielsen made 7 saves on the night and was throughly tested in the second half when the Whitecaps finally got their legs under them.

Notes: The BC Place Stadium roof was closed. The Whitecaps will play their next game on Saturday night when they host FC Dallas. Sporting KC will travel to Portland to play the Timbers on Saturday night.


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