Posts Tagged ‘Marc Dos Santos Whitecaps’

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Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs Houston Dynamo at B.C. Place on September 14, 2019. Photo: Har Journalist.

VANCOUVER, B.C – On a rain soaked Saturday night at B.C. Place, Whitecaps FC earned their 7th victory of the season thanks to a 2-1 draw over the Houston Dynamo. A crowd of 17,382 watched Fredy Montero come off the bench to score the match winner in the 90th minute.

Vancouver improves to 7-15-9 on the season with 30 points. The Dynamo’s chase to the MLS playoffs takes a crushing blow as they fall to 10-16-4 with 34 points.

“I think we deserve the three points.” Whitecaps FC Coach Marc Dos Santos told reporters post match. “This week, the thing we spoke the most about (was) what are the reasons we play for when you have four games to play and there’s no playoffs.

You play for your teammates and for the group that is (training) every day. You play for sponsors, for the club that pays you, for the club that brought you in and believes in you. You play for the fans that, even (when) knocked out, still come in and buy tickets and support the team and follow the team. We have a lot to play for. That’s the right mentality to have.”

Whitecaps FC goalkeeper, Zac MacMath made fives saves to earn his first victory with Vancouver. The veteran MLS keeper also earned his 47th career MLS win.

Number one goalkeeper, and MLS saves leader, Max Crepeau was out of the eighteen due to an ankle injury he picked up while on national team duty with Canada. MacMatch earned his 6th start of the season for Vancouver.

“Zac has worked really hard,” Doneil Henry explained post-match to Har Journalist. “Max (Crepeau) has done really well this season, and solidified himself as a number one keeper. Zac, I thought he did really well today. It’s good for his confidence, and good for the team to know that whenever he’s called upon, he can play.”

Vancouver started in a 4-3-3 formation with Tosaint Ricketts leading the line, flanked by Yordy Reyna, and Michaell Chirinos. It was a familiar story for Whitecaps FC as they struggled to create scoring chances in the final third of play.

Fighting to stay in the hunt for a playoff spot, the visiting Houston Dynamo weren’t much better. Coach Davy Arnaud deployed his Forever Orange in a 4-2-3-1 formation. While Mauro Manotas started up top, he didn’t create much. The service from his teammates just wasn’t there. It was a quiet first half, as neither side looked dangerous offensively.

The tide quickly turned in favour of the home side as Vancouver earned a penalty in the 53′ minute. Yordy Reyna sent a free kick into the Dynamo wall that was handled by Manotas. Referee, Robert Sibiga immediately pointed to the spot.

“It’s changing the game.” Dos Santos added. “Am I for VAR? Yes, but limited things. What’s changing is those goals. When I was a kid and you’d (see) players scoring, taking off their jersey, running in the crowd. Now, you score and there’s always suspense. The crowd gets up (in a) good-environment goal, then there’s suspense. That’s killing the game. It’s sad.”

As is with most Whitecaps FC matches, the penalty shout was turned over to a Video Assistant Review (VAR). However, this time, the decision from VAR was confirmed.

“I’m happy,” Henry said. “I’m not going to talk about the VAR, and get myself into trouble. It’s really good that we got one in our favour.”

Vancouver’s designed player, Hwang In-Beom stepped up to take the penalty. In-Beom sent Joe Willis the wrong way to score the opening goal of the match.

The visitors tied the match in the 78th thanks to sloppy rebound control from MacMath. Maynor Figueroa fired on target. MacMath and his defenders failed to clear the rebound. Manotas was a in a perfect position to pounce on the rebound to square the match.

Houston Dynamo held a private closed door meeting following the loss to Vancouver. Swedish international, Adam Lundqvist, spoke post-match about the mood of the team.

“We all knew that the performance was there, it’s just that we were lack in (a) different part of the game. Like I said, we can’t let this affect us anymore. There’s a new game next week, so like I said, there’s another game and you can always move forward. We have to take the positives of this game, keep learning and keep moving forward.”

Just as it looked like both teams were going to settle for a 1-1 draw, Whitecaps FC were able to nic a goal at the death. Montero nut-megged, Houston’s keeper to rescue all three points for Vancouver.

The 32-year-old has been in and out of Vancouver’s starting lineup this season, but he has remained patient and focused. Montero’s winning goal, was also his first goal form open play since May 10, 2019.

“Fredy from the beginning, if he’s in the team, or out of the team,” Henry said. “His mentality, and his attitude never changes. He’s not one of those players that slacks off. He keeps good tendencies, and good qualities as a player. I think that’s why Fredy has always done good at every level.”

Vancouver Whitecaps FC will look to continue to play spoiler as they host Columbus Crew SC on Saturday, September 21 at B.C. Place.

Vancouver Whitecaps FC Starting XI: Zac MacMath; Ali Adnan, Derek Cornelius, Doneil Henry(C), Scott Sutter; Russell Teibert, Andy Rose, Hwang In-Beom; Michaell Chirinos, 71 (Theo Bair), Tosaint Ricketts, 81 (Fredy Montero), Yordy Reyna, 90, (Lass Bangoura). 4-3-3

Houston Dynamo Starting XI: Joe Wilis; Adam Lundqvist, Maynor Figueroa, Alejandro Fuenmayor, Jose Bizama; Boniek Garcia, Tommy McNamara, 72 (Memo Rodriguez), Matias Vera; Christian Ramirez, 83 (Ronaldo Pena), Mauro Manotas, Tomas Martinez, 60 (Alberth Elis). 4-2-3-1

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Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs New York City FC at B.C. Place Stadium. August 31, 2019. Photo: Har Journalist.

VANCOUVER, B.C – Vancouver Whitecaps FC have officially been eliminated from the MLS playoff race following a 3-1 defeat to New York City FC. The ‘Boys in Blue’ set the tone early with a pair of first half goals, and a second half free kick cracker.

A crowd of 17,512 spectators watched New York City FC clinch a playoff spot, and improve to 14-5-8, (50 points).

New York City FC rookie, Gary Mackey-Steven, scored his first career goal that stood up as the eventual match winner.

“No, I think it’s first (time he’s score on his birthday) so it’s nice to get off the mark, extra special it’s my birthday but the main thing is getting the three points and I thought the boys done really well today so it’s a good victory again.”

Alexandru Mitrita, and Heber also scored for New York City FC, who have now won four matches in a row. Yordy Reyna had Vancouver’s loan goal as Vancouver looked to have found momentum, cutting the deficit to 2-1.

New York City FC quickly replied. Mitrita sent in a world-class free kick over the Whitecaps FC wall, to the right of Crepeau.

Let me talk bad about Max today in the third goal,” Whitecaps FC Coach, Marc Dos Santos said post-match. “Max knows, what I’m going to say. He knows how much I appreciate him and how much is given to the team. In that third goal, we felt that there was a man lacking in the wall, and the ball went through.  A goal that we can concede in a moment that there’s a lot of belief in the team. Then we we concede that third one, and it becomes difficult.”

Whitecaps FC drop to 6-15-9, (27 points) with a 4-6-4 record at home.

“Guys are pissed off,” Whitecaps FC centre-back, Doneil Henry explained. “New York City FC, top of the eastern conference. A couple of mistakes and you get punished. I didn’t think we played bad. Maybe we could have been a little bit more clinical on the day. The goals didn’t go in the net. It’s tough.”

It didn’t take long for the visitors to open the scoring after some sloppy play from Whitecaps FC. Tony Rocha nicked the ball off skipper, Jon Erice, and found a streaking Heber. The Brazilian forward broke in and hammered the ball past Crepeau for his 14th goal of the season.

“It means a lot.” New York City FC’s, Anton Tinnerholm spoke about his teams win. “It was a tough one today, we didn’t play the best, but we still got the three points. In the end, it’s all that matters. We’ve had a couple of games this season when we haven’t played one-hundred percent. We got the three points, and that’s what makes a good team even better. I think we have to keep on going.”

A hush fell over the crowd in the 15′ minute when Whitecaps FC right-back, Jake Nerwinski went down. The New Jersey native, was helped off the pitch by Whitecaps FC staff. Nerwinski left with a right ankle sprain. He left the stadium in a walking boot, and the assistance of a crutch. Scott Sutter came on for Vancouver’s first substitution.

Injuries continued to pile up in the first half. New York City FC’s Heber was a victim of the B.C. Place turf. He was forced to exit the match with a right quad strain. Scottish international, Gary Mackey-Steven came on in the 21′ minute.

It did not take long for Mackey-Steven to make an impact. Max Morales played in a lovely through ball that sent midfielder in on goal. Mackey-Steven delivered a brilliant strike to double the visitors lead.

Things went from bad to worse for the home side. Tosaint Ricketts chased down a lose ball inside the New York City FC box. The Canadian international was tripped up in the ensuing process. Referee Marcos de Oliveira pointed to the spot.

Before Fredy Montero stepped up to take the penalty, VAR (Video Assistant Review) struck again.

The penalty was called back, and the boo birds rained down at B.C. Place.

“Yeah, that’s exactly what I don’t want to talk about.” Dos Santos looked to a avoid talk about the VAR decision. “I know it’s not your fault, you’re doing your job, you’re fine. I know, three kids, the wife, I want to take they to Disney (Land) one day. I’m not talking about VAR.”

The Whitecaps FC coaching staff disagreed with the call, and made their thoughts known. Assistant Coach Vanni Sartini, and Goalkeeper Coach, Youssef Dahha, were both tossed from the match. The duo riled up the crowd as they departed the pitch.

Despite the deficit Vancouver came back after the interval with some enthusiasm. Whitecaps FC had several key opportunities to cut New York City FC’s lead in half, and they did exactly that in the 64′ minute.

Ricketts setup Yordy Reyna inside the New York City FC box. The Peruvian international fired a rocket past Johnson for his team leading 7th goal of the season.

“I think Yordy has been outstanding for this team,” Doneil Henry said. “Especially in the last seven to ten games. You see effort, you see his momentum, his work rate. He shows you the kind of player he is. Salute to him, he’s been fantastic.”

It’s been a season to forget for Whitecaps FC. The excitement and anticipation that was there during a hectic off-season hasn’t met on field results. Vancouver will look to play spoiler and finish out the season with four matches remaining.

Vancouver Whitecaps FC Starting XI: Max Crepeau; Ali Adnan, Andy Rose, Doneil Henry, Jake Nerwinski, 15 (Scott Sutter); Russell Teibert, Jon Erice(C), 45 (Michaell Chirinos), In-Beom, 82 (Theo Bair); Yordy Reyna, Fredy Montero; Tosaint Ricketts. 4-3-2-1

New York City FC Starting XI: Sean Johnson; Ben Sweat, Alexander Caellens, Maxime Chanot(C), Anton Tinnerholm; Keaton Parks, Tony Rocha, Max Morales, 90+1 (Justin Haak); Alexandru Mitrita, Valentin Castellanos, 70 (Sebastien Ibeagha), Heber, 21 (Gary Mackey-Steven). 4-3-3

 

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Vancouver Whitecaps FC centre-back, Érik Godoy on Tuesday July 13, 2019. Photo: Har Journalist

VANCOUVER, B.C – The most underrated player on Whitecaps FC this season? It’s not who you think, a durable defender that never complains, that’s been vital to the back-four in his first season in MLS.

Érik Godoy.

The 25-year-old, Godoy has been under appreciated this season as an anchor in the back-four. Whitecaps FC have played 26 matches this season, and Godoy has been on the pitch for all but 14 minutes. He was a first half substitute for Doneil Henry (back contusion) in Minnesota on July 27.

Godoy credits his durability to the preparation he takes off the pitch.

“I think the biggest thing for playing all these games, and all these minutes, is mental toughness. I always prepare myself to go into training, games, to give my best, recover well, eat, and sleep well.”

With all the matches, travel, and tactics, you have to wonder if Godoy is getting tired?

“I feel a little tired now, especially, because I didn’t do a preseason when I came here.” Godoy said in an exclusive interview with Har Journalist.

Whitecaps FC Coach Marc Dos Santos would like more players with Godoy’s positive mindset.

“He has been important,” Coach Marc Dos Santos told reporters earlier this week. “Erik is a player that never talks. He always trains with an intensity, and a commitment all the time. If we would ask him to play a reserve team game today, he would say okay, and not even question it. His mentality is what we need more here. We need more guys with that type of mentality.”

Godoy was quick to score Whitecaps FC’s first goal of the season, at home vs Minnesota United FC. His 6th minute header off a corner still stands as his lone goal this season. Despite his early success, that’s not Godoy’s most memorable moment with Vancouver.

“When we beat LAFC when they were in first place. It was definitely a game that gave us a lot of momentum going forward, and it let us continue forward that week.”

Defenders don’t get the accolades that strikers, wingers, and midfielders do, but Godoy has been just as dependable and solid for Whitecaps FC. It can be quite the adjustment for a new player coming to a new league, country, and different style of football.

“I think it’s a growing league,” Godoy described MLS. “It’s improving. Now you’re seeing players who aren’t just coming to MLS to retire, but coming here straight from Europe to play their careers.”

Godoy has been pleasantly surprised by his first impressions of his new surroundings.

“It’s the first country, I’ve played in outside of my country,” Godoy explained. “The league, the stadium, the quality, the level, all surprised me. It was better than I anticipated, it made it easier for me to transition into it. I’m looking forward to next year.”

Godoy is on a one-year loan from Club Atlético Colón in Argentina. He isn’t quite sure if he will be back with Whitecaps FC next season, the decision is out of his hands.

“Yes, we’re evaluating the process, and the possibility of staying next year,” Godoy explained. “The answer will have to come from the club, and the coach in December.”

Have Whitecaps FC had any discussions about bringing Godoy back?

“Of course, yeah of course,” Dos Santos said. “It’s a player that we would like to keep here.”

Vancouver will host D.C. United on Saturday July 17, at B.C. Place. It could be a busy night for Érik Godoy with former England international, Wayne Rooney possibly leading the line for the ‘Black and Red’.

Erice - Hero

VANCOUVER, B.C – Where is Jon Erice? The Whitecaps FC midfielder has been noticeably stapled to the bench over the course of the last month. The Vancouver captain has found himself on the outside looking in. In the last seven matches across all competitions, Erice has been on the field for a total of 150 minutes. He has made just two starts, and gone a full ninety minutes just once since July 7.

In the first two months of the MLS season, Erice started 10 of the first 11 matches. He was a vital piece of a developing Whitecaps FC midfield that was looking to find chemistry with all the new faces on the team.

In 19 MLS appearances, Erice has 2 assists this season.

Despite not seeing the pitch in Vancouver’s nil-nil draw at Minnesota, and 2-1 win over FC Cincinnati, Erice hasn’t lost his focus. He is determined to buckle down, and do his best to get back into Coach Marc Dos Santos starting eleven.

“Ohh my confidence is very high,” Erice explained to Har Journalist. “It’s a question of the coach who takes the decision to put in other players. This is part of football, this is nothing special for me. It’s not the first time I’m in the bench. My job now is to work hard in training, and try to help the team from outside.”

“We are twenty-two players,” Erice added. “We have four, five, six midfielders, all the players are playing, and they are doing good in the last game, so I have to wait my turn again, and work hard. It’s part of soccer. We are twenty-two players, and everybody deserves to play. Now it’s the moment of other players, and as a teammate I will support them.”

The La Liga product was acquired by Whitecaps FC in January 2019, from La Liga 2 side Albacete Balompié. Erice’s experience has seen him play football all over Europe, but that also means he has a lot of kilometres on his 32-year-old legs.

Erice absence from Whitecaps FC’s most recent matches might not be down to his form of play, but how his body is recovering after a hectic calendar year of playing football.

“He has a good mentality, he’s a professional,” Dos Santos explained. “He’s a player that understands the game. He understands the moment. I think that he looks tired for us. In July he had a preseason in Spain, did half a season, and came here. He hasn’t had a break for thirteen months right now. We question if that, at his age has hit him. We feel maybe he needs a little bit more of a break.”

The transfer of Felipe Martins to D.C. United earlier this week, could open up a spot for Erice to get back into Vancouver’s lineup. It’s not cut and dry. You will be hard pressed to find a manager who will tinker with a winning lineup.

Unbeaten in their last two matches, Whitecaps FC could turn to other options.

“It’s a game at a time,” Dos Santos said. “Maybe yes, maybe no. For now, InBeom is an option to play against Portland. If the door opens, he (Erice) could come back in. It doesn’t change the fact that we feel that there’s a little bit of fatigue there, that we need to manage.”

Finding yourself on the sidelines, not playing, is enough to drive any athlete up the wall, but that’s not Jon Erice. He is enjoying life in MLS, and his first season with Whitecaps FC. Erice and his family expect to be in Vancouver long term.

A native of Pamplona Spain, Erice, is earning $752,364 in guaranteed compensation this season.

“Yes, yes, I have two years contract with the club. Another one year, and an option. If they want me to be here, I will be very happy to be here for a long time.”

On Saturday, Whitecaps FC will put their 5-11-9 record on the line against a 9-9-4 Portland Timbers side at Providence Park in another Cascadia derby match. Vancouver beat Portland 1-0 on May 10, at B.C. Place earlier this season.

MLS: Minnesota United FC at Vancouver Whitecaps FC

VANCOUVER, B.C – In the wake of two mass shootings in the U.S. that killed 31 people in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio last weekend. Philadelphia Union captain, Alejandro Bedoya decided to use his platform as a professional athlete to speak out against gun violence in the U.S. and demand action from U.S. congress.

Bedoya was not fined, he didn’t face criticism for speaking out. A lot of MLS players understand the platform they have, and they support what Bedoya did. The New Jersey, native, created a much needed discussion around the epidemic of gun violence, and mass shootings in the U.S.

Vancouver Whitecaps FC Coach Marc Dos Santos, has personally wondered what he can do himself to help.

“I don’t know Bedoya, but what I’ll tell you. I’ve questioned if I would sit down or stand during the national anthem of the U.S. after what happened. I don’t think it makes a big difference if I stand or sit down. It did cross my mind.”

“I would call it disgusting to live in a world that the U.S is not in an internal war with no one, and it looks like it’s a war out there. Sometimes it looks like a third world country to be honest with you. It’s sad that families go to a shopping centre or a restaurant, and you always have a slight percentage of a guy coming in with a gun, and shooting everybody. It’s sad, it’s disgusting. It’s bad.”

“I understand countries that are in war. I understand that in countries they are fighting for things in the country, and freedom, but it’s not the case in the U.S. – I understand Bedoya and I support what he did.”

Whitecaps FC’s Scott Sutter spent two seasons playing for Orlando City SC. He has lived and traveled all across the U.S. – He isn’t actively thinking about what could happen if he is out shopping, at the movies, or attending a festival. Athletes want to live their lives freely just like everyone else.

Sutter and his teammates were in Ohio celebrating the teams 2-1 victory over FC Cincinnati on Saturday, when they first heard what happened north of them in Dayton.

“Yeah, Dayton was only fifty minutes away from where we were,” Sutter explained. “We were having a couple of drinks in a bar after the win. You just think how scary that can be, and that it could happen to us. It’s such a shame.”

“It’s scary, we were pretty close to that,” Zac MacMath said. “That easily could have been Cincinnati instead of Dayton, or Portland this week. It could be anywhere, and it’s a scary thought. I think it’s something that everyone thinks about now as we travel around the country.”

The 33-year-old Sutter won’t let gun violence dictate the way he lives his life. He enjoys going to the U.S. and he has a lot of happy memories from his time with Orlando. Sutter wants to see change from the powers who are in charge.

“I think there’s a lot of things that need to change,” Sutter explained to Har Journalist. “I had a great couple years living in the States. I love the country, and can imagine living there in the future at some point. It’s a shame, especially when you have families, friends, and kids of your own.”

“You ask, ‘where is it safe anymore,’ The way you can just walk into any big superstore and buy guns, and weapons like that. They need to clamp down on it massively. It’s the people that are in charge in D.C. that need to do that, and get their act together.”

The right to keep and bear arms is something Sutter didn’t grow up with. There isn’t a gun culture in Switzerland. The strict gun laws that exist throughout Europe make it so you can’t go purchase a gun, and shoot people. When Sutter first moved to the U.S. he was shocked by how much access there is for anyone who wants to buy a gun.

“I mean completely different,” Sutter said. “It’s incredible, you walk into a Dick’s Sporting Goods or a Walmart and you’ve got weapons, and guns there. That’s something that us guys in Europe have never had or never seen before. It’s definitely incredible, and just unfortunate the way things are at the moment.”

A native of St. Petersburg, Florida, MacMath, isn’t going to change the way he lives. He will be cautious of course.

“I feel safe pretty much anywhere,” MacMath said. “It really doesn’t change much for me. I guess keeping an extra eye out.”

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VANCOUVER, B.C – Whitecaps FC said goodbye to a long time MLS veteran as they bid farewell to Felipe Martins on Tuesday. Vancouver sent the Brazilian midfielder to D.C. United in exchange for $75,000 of 2020 Targeted Allocation Money (TAM). and a 2020 international roster spot.

The 28-year-old joined Whitecaps FC from the New York Red Bulls in March 2018. Felipe made 47 MLS appearances in parts of two seasons on the west coast. He registered 2 goals, and 7 assists in MLS play. Felipe’s scored the match winner against FC Cincinnati on Saturday as Vancouver snapped an 11 match winless streak across all competitions.

“First of all I want to thank each and every single fan that came and supported us,” Felipe told reporters in Vancouver. “I think I go with the knowledge that every single day, that I gave my all.”

“I’m very excited to join such a great organization. An organization that I know very well, because I played many times against them. I hope to get there, get to work, and day-by-day won those fans that maybe one day hated me so much. I’m ready to get there, work hard, make the playoffs, make the D.C. United fans and the organization proud.”

D.C. United’s courtship of Felipe came out of nowhere, talks between the two clubs came together following Vancouver’s 2-1 win over FC Cincinnati. Vancouver was not actively shopping Felipe. D.C. United’s interest came about rather quickly.

“It happened very fast.” Coach Marc Dos Santos explained.

“You have to be very cold in the position that I’m in,” Dos Santos said. “You have to always look at the big picture. It’s ironic that he scores the winning goal in Cincinnati, but you can’t be emotional in this business. You always have to stay focused and driven, on the big picture.”

Felipe’s production didn’t quite match his hefty 2019 salary of $500.000.

It was an up and down tenure for Felipe Martins in Vancouver. He was often criticized by fans on social media for his play on the pitch, and you could tell it bothered him. Underneath it all, players are human beings, with emotions and feelings. Tim Parker blossomed with the Red Bulls, while Felipe struggled to find consistent playing time with Vancouver.

The unnecessary vitriol towards Felipe affected him personally.

“It was a rollercoaster to be honest,” Felipe admitted. “To be fair, I started very well. I think I had a great half of the season this year. Some personal issues got me a little bit. I came back very excited, but unfortunately after many years playing regularly week by week, I didn’t get to play as consistent as I wanted. Then you start to get doubts in your mind. You don’t get the confidence that you need every single day, and every single game, but that’s part of football. I get out on a positive note with my first goal this year.”

The news of the trade broke while Whitecaps FC players were getting ready for a recovery training session at the National Soccer Development Centre at U.B.C. – Felipe was preparing to go on the field for his pre-hab work, when Assistant Coach, Vanni Sartini, let him know that Marc Dos Santos wanted to talk to him.

“From this day on, I’m a D.C. United player,” Felipe said proudly. “I’m going to come with the same intensity or even more, to give my all. It will be easier for my family, who will still be here, preparing everything because we were surprised by this move. At the same time, it makes us excited to go back to the east coast, the U.S.”

Whitecaps FC fans won’t have to wait long for Felipe to return to Vancouver. D.C. United will visit B.C. Place on Saturday, August 17. Felipe’s wife Nina, and their two children, will stay in Vancouver and get ready for the next big move.

“You’re always going to be judged on your last game,” Felipe spoke honestly. “I think the fans are going to be happy for one game that I gave the game winner. Hate or love, I appreciate everything everyone has done for me. I’m as professional as I can be everyday.”

The MLS secondary transfer window shuts on Wednesday, August 7 at 11:59 p.m. CT. Whitecaps FC could have another move to make, wheels are in motion, but nothing is across the line yet. Dos Santos has been working the phones.

“I’m going to go now to my office, and maybe I’ll have a lot of missed calls, messages. I don’t know. Until Wednesday… look, I don’t have plan of doing, but never, say never. I know we want another player that we’re trying to pursue, and hopefully it’s going to work until Wednesday. If it doesn’t, we move on and focus on January.”

Also on Tuesday, Whitecaps FC added to their offence by acquiring Honduran international winger Michaell Chirinos on loan from Club Deportivo Olimpia through to the end of the 2019 season. Chirinos is expected to join the team later this week, and could be in contention for his MLS debut when Vancouver hosts D.C. United.

The 24-year-old could be joined by another Whitecaps FC acquisition if Dos Santos is able to finalize another move.

“There’s a lot of interest for our players, yeah.”

“We don’t know, that’s the thing,” Dos Santos said. “We weren’t planning to move Felipe. For something else, we are in the moves, and trying to do another piece. We’re working very hard at it, hopefully it’s going to be done this window, if not, we’ll have to wait.” Dos Santos said.

At the end of the day, professional sports is a business, and tough decisions have to be made.

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Vancouver Whitecaps FC Coach Marc Dos Santos at B.C. Place. Photo: Har Journalist.

VANCOUVER B.C – Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse for Vancouver Whitecaps FC, it did. Canadian Premier League side, Cavalry FC made history by knocking off Whitecaps FC in the Canadian Championship quarterfinals.

Vancouver has not won a football match since May 25. It’s a stretch that has seen them go winless in ten matches across all competitions. They aren’t scoring, defending, or playing as a team.

It feels like anything that could go wrong, has, or will go wrong.

“To be honest with you, if I can put it very raw, and direct. The month of July has been a nightmare, it’s just been a nightmare in everything.” Coach Marc Dos Santos told reporters at Vancouver International Airport before the team departed for Minnesota.

The simplest of passes aren’t connecting, players aren’t hustling back on defence, and there seems to be no offensive structure when the team looks to move forward. Shoulders are slumped, fingers are being pointed, and frustration levels are rising.

The notion of whether or not the players have tuned out Marc Dos Santos is an inevitable question. The team isn’t performing, and the message isn’t getting through to his players.

“I don’t know, you have to ask them.” Dos Santos told Har Journalist. “I don’t feel that, but you have to ask them.”

If Dos Santos isn’t able to help guide his squad of players that he brought in during a hectic offseason, that leaves little chance the players will find a winning formula.

A fired up, and visibly frustrated Jake Nerwinski, simply doesn’t have all the answers.

“I’m not the coach, so I’m not the guy that’s going to give you guys all the tactics, and the players to play. I think it comes down to a mentality, and it’s a desire to win, a desire to get out of this slump, to stop the losing from two months. That’s what it is.”

Leading goal-scorer Fredy Montero, and skipper Jon Erice, were both left out of the eighteen for Vancouver’s exit from the Canadian Championship. Dos Santos had to fill a Canadian roster quota for the competition. Having players who have played in Europe, and are earning $968,000 (Montero), and $752,364 (Erice) sitting up in the press box certainly sends a message to them and the rest of the team.

The effort that’s been delivered hasn’t been good enough all around. However, how many times can you pull the ‘press box benching card’ before the locker room, and players switch off, if they haven’t already.

With eleven matches to go, Whitecaps FC’s season has the potential to plummet further.

“I think sitting them, and now there’s a message, it’s not about that,” Dos Santos explained. “These guys are 32-years old, it’s players that have experience. We have a game in Minnesota where Fredy is going to play, it’s not about that. It’s about me being challenged right now as a coach to motivate a group. We’re all in this together.”

Whitecaps FC’s Andy Rose is one of the few players on the team with MLS experience. Rose spent four seasons with Seattle Sounders FC. He is well versed in the ups, and downs that MLS brings. If Vancouver isn’t all pulling in the right direction, it’s hard to get traction and go on a run of form. Whitecaps FC just haven’t been on the same page.

“There’s not many players in the locker room throughout this last month and a half that can really look at themselves and feel proud. Feel like they’ve done themselves justice. Individually you have to look deep.” Rose said.

“The fans can critique how I play, my skill, and if I make mistakes on the ball,” Nerwinski spoke honestly. “I hope they can never critique my heart, and my passion when I step on the field.”

It was expected that Vancouver Whitecaps FC would stand pat during the MLS transfer window that remains open until August 8, but things have changed. Needing to find a jolt of energy, and someone who can provide a boost, Vancouver are expected to make some type of move.

Whitecaps FC made a multi-million dollar transfer offer for South Korean international, Ui-jo Hwang. The attempts to bring the striker to Vancouver fell through because he wanted to play in Europe. Ui-jo moved to Ligue 1 side, Bordeaux.

It won’t be a flashy name, or someone that’s going to put the team on his back. It’s quite possible Vancouver will make a move just wake the team up, and try to kick them into first gear.

“Sometimes you need a little bit of new blood in the locker room to allow you to get a spark.” Dos Santos said.

“We’re trying in this transfer window to make something happen still in the next 7-8 days.”

“Am I optimistic… I think something is going to happen, but when our side already commits to we want to do it, and we’re kind of waiting for the other side, it’s tough to tell you if I’m one-hundred percent optimistic or not.”

The 4-11-8 Whitecaps FC take on 10-7-4 Minnesota United FC on Saturday night at Allianz Field. ‘The Loons’ defeated Vancouver 3-2 at B.C. Place in the MLS season opener on March 2. Vancouver will be looking to right the ship, and find momentum in Minnesota.

Whitecaps FC will hope to halt a five-match MLS losing skid that’s seen them outscored 17-2. The road hasn’t been kind to Vancouver. Whitecaps FC sport a 1-6-4 record away from B.C. Place. Five of the next six matches are on the road.

“It’s times like these when a lot of people are talking in and outside of the arena,” Rose added. “We totally understand that. We understand the fans mentality through stretches likes this. It’s important that the entire group sticks together through this and fight our way out of it.”