Vancouver Whitecaps vs Colorado Rapids Game Recap

Posted: June 17, 2012 in Uncategorized

In their brand new 3rd kit and down 10-men the Vancouver Whitecaps delivered a late stunner and sent 19,166 fans home happy. The Whitecaps defeated the Colorado Rapids 1-0 in a very important 6-point game. With a Colorado Rapids win both teams would be tied for 4th in the Western Conference with 22 points. Vancouver widened the gap with an extra 3 points thanks to a goal by Sebastien Le Toux in the 80th minute. Both teams were evenly matched and had plenty of scoring opportunities however Le Toux was the only player to find the back of the net on Saturday afternoon at BC Place Stadium.

Both teams had sparse scoring opportunities in the first 30 minutes of the game which was quite chippy and physical. The most recognizable man on the pitch was referee Jasen Anno who seemed to blow his whistle for a free kick everytime he took a breath. At one point Davide Chiumiento half hugged Anno in an effort to make peace. In regards to soccer players Whitecaps goalie Joe Cannon saved the Whitecaps bacon countless times in the opening forty-five. Five minutes in Martin Bonjour attempted a back pass to Cannon however the ball was nearly stolen away by a Rapids attacker. Cannon slid to kick the ball away just before disaster struck. Cannon made some terrific saves in the 33rd and 34th minute before and after a Colorado corner. Jeff Larentowicz set up Martin Rivero and Cannon dove to his right to send the ball out of play. Kosuke Kimura was able to get a shot off after the Rapids corner which Cannon dove to his left to save. The Whitecaps and Rapids went to their locker rooms scoreless after a well-played first half.

Before his late game heroics Sebastien Le Toux had a few quality scoring chances earlier in the second half. In the 49th Y.P. Lee had his shot saved and Le Toux found the ball in a miss mash of players and fired the ball directly at Rapids goalie Scott Pickens while he was out of position. Le Toux had an even better chance to score in the 69th minute when he worked a give-and-go with left back Alain Rochat. The Swiss defender cut in past he Rapids defense and put the ball on a tee for Le Toux in front of the Rapids net. Le Toux hammered the ball off Pickens and then the crossbar before eventually seeing it cleared away.

Darren Mattocks, who scored a pair of goals in the Whitecaps 3-1 over the Houston Dynamo on Sunday, June 10th started up front between Sebastien Le Toux and Davide Chiumiento and nearly scored 40 seconds into the game when he fired a low shot at Pickens that was easily saved. Unfortunately for Mattocks and the Whitecaps this would be the young Jamaicans best contribution to the game. Mattocks picked up two questionable yellow cards less than a minute apart in the 59th minute. Whistle happy referee Jasen Anno first carded Mattocks for diving in the box, and then for a suspect tackle on Drew Moor. Mattocks was none too pleased with this decision and did not talk to the media after the game.

Davide Chiumiento was a tireless¬†contributor¬†for the Whitecaps and with Camilo getting ready to come into the game for the skilled play-maker, Chiumiento showed his great passing ability by setting up the only goal of the game. Chiumiento turned and sent a huge volley across the pitch to the lead man Le Toux. The tall Frenchman out ran his defender Scott Palguta and one timed the ball past Pickens.¬†Somehow Chiumiento managed to channel sensational Italian midfielder Andrea Pirlo and was able to put the ball right where Le Toux needed it. BC Place erupted and the crowd went crazy. Chiumiento talked about his assist after the game. “Ya in the team we joke about that, sometimes they call me Pirlo but he’s too good for me. I¬†appreciate¬†how he plays, and he’s a great player and I like to do the same first touch going and then coming back and then Sebastien made a great run. I’m happy about the win.”

Colorado started to mount an aggressive attack in the final 10 minutes and hit the woodwork twice before the final whistle blew. First Martin Rivero hit the crossbar in the 82nd minute and then Rapids defender Hunter Freeman curled the ball past Cannon before he was saved by his left post in the 88th minute. Overall Colorado had more opportunities to score in this game but their back line let them down in the second half and they simply could not beat Whitecaps goalie Joe Cannon when it counted. Le Toux scored a timely goal and the 10-man Whitecaps prevailed like it was just business.

This game had everything you want to see in 90 minutes a red card, great saves, a beautiful goal, and a lovely new jersey. The Whitecaps could have packed it in and shut the door after Darren Mattocks was sent off but they played their best down a man. Great teams find ways to win when the going gets tough the Whitecaps took a big step against Colorado in earning their 7th victory of the season.¬†Coach Rennie talked about Mattocks and his yellow cards. “The sending off was a big decision but people can draw their own conclusions on that and I think if I give my opinion it can detract from the game and end up being something that people talk about more than what we achieved tonight. My main focus is on how we respond to those decisions and I‚Äôm very pleased with that tonight.‚ÄĚ

Notes: The Whitecaps will host the high-flying New York Red Bulls in their only meeting of the season on Wednesday, June 20, at 8:00 p.m. PT. Whitecaps supporters may be disappointed to know that Thierry Henry and Rafa Marquez will not play in that game due to recently sustained injuries. Sebastien Le Toux now leads the Whitecaps with 4 goals.

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