Posts Tagged ‘VWFC Fredy Montero’

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Whitecaps FC vs Toronto FC at B.C. Place in Vancouver on May 31, 2019. Photo: Har Journalist 

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Vancouver Whitecaps FC’s Russell Teibert. Photo: Whitecaps FC

VANCOUVER, B.C. – Whitecaps FC are back on the road, as the team gets set for a pair of matches away from B.C. Place. Vancouver will take on Sporting Kansas City on Saturday, May 18, and then it’s a battle against the New York Red Bulls on Wednesday, May 22.

Vancouver is coming off a 1-0 loss to Atlanta United FC on Wednesday night at B.C. Place. At the minute, Whitecaps FC sit 8th in the western conference with a record of 3-6-3, 12-points. Sporting Kansas City remain in 11th position with a 10-points, from a 2-4-4 record. The home side will be looking to snap an eight-match winless streak.

Whitecaps FC are no strangers to long distance travel. Playing on the west coast often means long road trips across the continent. Vancouver has already had three trips into the central and eastern time zones, traveling to Houston, Chicago, and Orlando. That often requires flying commercial with a layover before reaching the final designation.

Over the years, players have developed a flying routine. Some players prefer the window seat, over the aisle, and almost no player wants to be stuck in the dreaded middle seat.

“I love the aisle, so I can get up and go to the bathroom when I feel like it.” Fredy Montero explained.

“I’m an aisle guy,” Jake Nerwinski said. “I like to be able to get out. I like to lean my legs out into the aisle a little bit.”

“If it’s a long trip, I like the aisle,” Russell Teibert revealed. “If it’s quick trip, which we rarely have here in Vancouver, I like the window.”

“My favourite situation is a nice aisle seat, and I sleep as much as possible,” Andy Rose revealed. “Our last plane trip, we were on United, and we had a couple of Premier League games on, which was great. That’s probably the ideal situation. A good sleep, good book, and time to relax.”

“I’m always window seat,” Doneil Henry admitted. “I don’t like to be bothered, I don’t like to be bumped by carts when I’m in the aisle seat. Put me by the window, and I just sleep.”

“Middle, love the middle,” Scott Sutter joked. “I love being crammed in. No, no. Aisle all day, I prefer the aisle, I like to stretch my legs a little bit.”

There are a variety of choices to pass the time away on a long flights. You can try and get some kip, read a book, play cards, listen to music, watch a movie, or talk to your seat mate. Athletes usually like to rest up, relax, and watch a movie.

Vancouver Whitecaps FC players are no different.

“Watch movies, that I can’t watch at home with my kids,” Felipe told reporters at Vancouver International Airport. “I like to be quiet, watch movies, and enjoy myself. Anything on iTunes, and Netflix.”

“Mostly watch films, and see what new films are out,” Sutter said. “I’ve got my iPad, and a good book at the moment.”

“Soccer books, at the moment I’m reading a great book about Barcelona,” Rose explained. “That’s incredibly interesting. I read a lot about different coaches, managers, player autobiographies, all those sorts of things.”

“I try to sleep,” Nerwinski added. “I try to rest as much as I can. When I get a little stiff, I usually do a little walking down the aisle, until a flight attendant will yell at me to sit down. I watch Netflix. Right now I’m watching Designated Survivor, it’s pretty good.”

“Sleep, I like to sleep,” Henry said. “I don’t do anything other than sleep. Sometimes I download a couple of Netflix. I’ve been watching Imposters. I’m on the second season.”

“I don’t sleep, that’s for sure,” Montero revealed. “I get nervous when the plane is shaking, for those two seconds, five seconds. I’m praying about it, because I honestly don’t like it. Most of the time, I watch movies, read books, and talk to my teammates.”

There’s always one individual who is persistent in chatting up his teammates while they’re doing their own thing. If there’s a lengthy travel day ahead for Whitecaps FC, there’s one player that teammates would prefer they don’t sit beside.

“Ali (Adnan), Ali’s annoying.” Henry said.

“Normally I sleep, but Ali (Adnan) has been bothering me on the flights,” Teibert explained. “He likes to take pictures of me. I’ve kind of got to sleep with one eye open, now.”

“Joaquin (Ardaiz).” Nerwinski revealed. “I’ve sat next to him two or three times. He loves the middle (seat), which is a very odd thing. He likes to talk to everybody. If you sit next to him, you’re not going to get much sleep.”

“Yeah, Fredy Montero. He just does not shut-up on the flights,” Sutter laughed. “It’s crazy, he just wants to speak about everything. No, no, he’s great. If I can choose anyone, it would be next to Fredy.”

“Fortunately, we’re all sort of spread out on the plane,” Rose revealed. “I think we do a great job of trying to get away from the middle seats. Usually you’re sat by yourself. A few guys like to play cards together, and what not. For the most part, so far, I haven’t been hassled.”

Whitecaps FC will look to re-group in the friendly skies as they prepare for a week on the road. Vancouver will stay and train in Kansas City following Saturday’s match at Children’s Mercy Park. Vancouver will fly home on Thursday, May 23.

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Vancouver Whitecaps FC vs Portland Timers FC on Friday, May 10, 2019 at B.C Place. Photo: Har Journalist.

VANCOUVER, B.C – Vancouver Whitecaps FC have jumped ahead of the pack into a western conference playoff spot after a 1-0 win over Cascadia rival, Portland Timbers FC. Fredy Montero’s third goal of the season was enough to earn all three points in front of a crowd of 18,356 at B.C. Place.

After struggling to find his form, and consistent minutes earlier this season. the 31-year-old, Montero, has now scored in back to back matches. Montero is now locked in and scoring. While some strikers might try and shake up their routine, Montero hasn’t done that.

“No, the same,” Montero explained to Har Journalist, post-match. “I try to work hard, I know my value. I know what I can do to help the team, and I always try to believe in every single training session. I’m honest to myself, and I have a lot of experience. I always try to be focused because there are so many good players on this team. We need to be ready, because we need all the players ready to go, to win games.”

Vancouver is now 2-0-1 in their last three matches at B.C. Place.

Whitecaps FC improve to 3-5-3, (12-points) on the season, and Portland slips to 3-5-2, (11-points). Vancouver now sits momentarily in the 7th western conference playoff spot.

“The first 20 minutes of the team were fantastic in every sense,” Coach Marc Dos Santos told reporters post-match. “Possession, creating, scoring, mobility in the attack. Then Portland had a little bit more possession. Blanco and Valeri were able to find some pockets between lines and that created a little bit of instability. The game became very broken when we tried to exploit some things in transition. They won the ball, then we lost the second ball, it became broken. The last 10 minutes of the first half, we were able to settle again. In the second half, we knew they would come hard. This was the team that was in the MLS Cup final. They’re a good team and it’s normal when you play good teams that they come at you. We were able to be solid, we were able to show commitment between everybody, and in transition, we had plays that were exciting and could’ve finished with a goal. Overall, I think with what we did in the 90 minutes, we deserve the three points against a very good team coming from three wins in a row so the guys did a very good job.”

Whitecaps FC’s leading scoring was in a philosophical mood post-match.

“It’s always good when we win,” Montero explained. “But it doesn’t mean we are the best team, so that’s why, when sometimes the results are not the best, we also think we aren’t the worst team in the league. We need to keep moving forward, and believing in the process.” 

It didn’t take long for Vancouver to open the scoring. Montero showed his brilliance to control the ball, and volley a striker top corner on Timbers keeper, Steve Clark. Russell Teibert setup Montero, and Vancouver was ahead early in the 9′ minute.

“The goal,” Montero recalled. “I just remember when, Inbeom tried to play the ball to me. One of the Portland defenders touched the ball, and then Rusty (Russell Teibert) with a beautiful assist. I give all the credit to him. With one touch, he gave me the ball, and put me one on one with the goalkeeper. My first touch was from my right, to my left. I shot really hard on the first post. Thank god that was a good goal. I was expecting the ball to go that hard on the goalkeeper, especially with my left foot.”

Whitecaps FC had all sorts of early pressure on the visitors, and could have easily been ahead by a bigger margin. Ali Adnan had a ball sent into the box, that was dangerously headed on to the Timbers crossbar by Bill Tuiloma. Moments later, Adnan was unmarked at the side of the Timbers goal, only to send his effort high above the target.

For the third consecutive Whitecaps FC home match. The supporters groups, Southsiders, and Curva Collective, along with many other fans, walked out of the match, in protest, at the 35′ minute. The visiting Portland Timbers Army also joined the walk out in solidarity.

Portland came out strong to start the second half, and looked to find an equalizer with consistent pressure. Despite dominating the half with 27 shots attempted, and five on target. Vancouver’s defensive structure did not break. Doneil Henry was a force!!

“I thought that we had very good moments,” Portland Coach, Giovanni Savarese explained. “Unfortunately, there were a few times in the first half that they were able to find the space and they capitalized in one opportunity. They defended well, I thought that the guys just worked very hard. I mean, everyone put everything that they could. We had chances, we attacked, we possessed the ball. I thought that we dominated the match, but credit to them, they defended very well and the goalkeeper made some spectacular saves.”

Whitecaps FC’s Max Crepeau, stood on his head, and made several terrific saves to keep Vancouver ahead. Crepeau finished with five saves to earn his third clean sheet of the season. The 25 year-old, Crepeau, gave all the props to his back-line.

“There’s the back-four, man,” Crepeau said of his defence. “They’re really solid. We saw it tonight, we saw it last weekend. It’s always like that, the work ethic of the boys and the mentality. Balls in my area, the other guy is not getting it. The mentality of the boys is fantastic. We need to keep going on this one, because it’s a big part of our game, the defensive aspect.”

It will be a quick turn around for Vancouver as they host former Whitecap, Brek Shea, and Atlanta United FC, on Wednesday, May 15 at B.C. Place.

Vancouver Whitecaps FC Starting XI: Max Crepeau, Ali Adnan, Doneil Henry, Erik Godoy, Jake Nerwinski; Russell Teibert, Jon Erice(C), InBeom Hwang, 65 (Andy Rose); Lass Bangoura, 75 (Brett Levis), Fredy Montero, 87 (Joaquin Ardaiz), Lucas Venuto. 4-3-3

Portland Timbers FC Starting XI: Steve Clark; Zarek Valentin, 83 (Julio Cascante), Bill Tuiloma, Larrys Mabiala, Jorge Moreira, 83 (Lucas Melano); Sebastian Blanco, Diego Chara, Cristhian Paredes, Andres Flores, 73 (Andy Polo); Jeremy Eboisse, Diego Valeri(C). 4-4-2

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VANCOUVER, B.C – It’s early days, but Vancouver Whitecaps FC are floundering near the bottom of the MLS basement. Vancouver is 0-3-0 on the campaign after suffering a 3-2 defeat to the Houston Dynamo at BBVA Compass Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

The Caps just aren’t clicking like a fine tuned MLS machine. Passing is just out of sync, the defence has made costly errors, and Whitecaps FC have given up a penalty in each match this season. Whitecaps FC haven’t found a formula for success yet.

While fans might be eager to push the proverbial panic button, Vancouver Whitecaps FC Coach Marc Dos Santos isn’t bothered, frustration hasn’t settled in over his team.

“No, I’m not.” Dos Santos said, when asked about frustration setting in. “I think they’re professionals. I think we’re living something many teams in the league are living. There’s nine teams in MLS that are between zero and two points. When you’re a professional player, what you have to do is try to find solutions, and we’re all in this together, and we’re going to find solutions.”

Without a solid first team MLS left-back available, Whitecaps FC started the first half against Houston in a 3-5-2 formation. While wing-backs Scott Sutter, and PC were able to get back and help out Erik Godoy, Doneil Henry, and Derek Cornelius early on. It wasn’t long until Memo Rodriguez scored his first of two goals on the day.

“We want to normally play with a back-four,” Dos Santos admitted. “But with the challenges we’ve had in the left side. In going to Houston and knowing (Alberth) Elis, and (Romell) Quioto are dangerous in the one v one situations out wide, we tried to work on a back-five where you would always complement the centre-back with another full-back.”

Vancouver was able to fight back and square the match at 1-1 and later 2-2, but in the end, it was the Alberth Elis show.

Whitecaps FC’s blunders at the back, aren’t a microcosm of not understanding Dos Santos complex ball oriented, fast paced, sound defensive positional approach. It’s down to decision-making, and learning how to improve on those questionable made decisions.

“I think the understanding was there,” Dos Santos explained to Har Journalist. “It was more our individual decision-making that could have been better. I don’t think that it’s a lack of understanding, I think it’s more us in our decision-making.”

“We’re pissed, we’re pissed because we feel we deserve more,” Dos Santos said. “This is good that we all feel like that. Our frustration, I think it’s a good frustration.”

When you look at the other end of the pitch, the offence is still a work in progress. Fredy Montero was able to convert a first half penalty for his first goal of the season. Montero led Vancouver with 13 goals scored during the 2017 campaign. He is looking to find the same familiarity and flare that helped him during his first season with Vancouver.

Chemistry, and intuition between Montero, Yordy Reyna, and Hwang In-Beom has not yet materialized. We’ve seen glimpses of what the trio could become, but nothing on a consistent basis that shows they’re ready to carry Whitecaps FC.

There were moments of hands on the hips, and hands in the air. You could see the frustration of not being able to link up when Vancouver gained possession, and looked to advance forward.

“Hands in the air, the hip, we were dancing,” Montero joked. “It’s more about having that last pass perfectly where I can give the ball to Yordy (Reyna) and he can be in a position to score a goal. Once again, we’re not frustrated, we’re disappointed obviously, in the way that we lost the game.”

“They have to learn the way that I play,” Montero said. “At the same time I am learning from them. I’m trying to give the ball where they are dangerous. We don’t have big bodies into the box, but we can be dangerous one on one. We need to use that strength more.”

The 32-year-old Sutter earned his first start with Whitecaps FC as he came in for Jake Nerwinski. The sky is not falling, the end is not near, it’s just the ‘Madness of March’ – At the minute, Whitecaps FC are a united, and panic free squad.

“We’re disappointed, we’re not frustrated,” Sutter explained the difference. “We’re not in a situational crisis by any means, we don’t look at it like that. We’re just obviously disappointed that we haven’t got the start that I think we wanted or deserve, really. There’s no real use in complaining about it. We’re looking forward to the next game.”

You can’t win an MLS Championship in the first month and you can’t lock down a playoff spot, but you can set the tone, build momentum, and set a foundation for the season. Whitecaps FC have all the tools, technicians,  and talent. It’s now down to using the international break to re-group and prepare for the next match vs the top team in MLS.

A Cascadia clash awaits Vancouver Whitecaps FC as they host Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday, March 30 at B.C. Place. It’s bound to be a cracker as Seattle is a perfect 3-0-0.

Whitecaps FC’s Fredy Montero knows how important this derby match will be.

“It’s a must win game.”

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VANCOUVER – As early spring weather slowly moves over Vancouver, so does the March edition of Vancouver Whitecaps FC. The 0-2-0 Caps are looking for their first points of the 2019 MLS campaign as they head to BBVA Compass Stadium for a battle with the 1-0-1 Houston Dynamo on Saturday afternoon in Texas.

Fredy Montero, is back with Vancouver in his second go-around with Whitecaps FC. After departing following the 2017 season, it’s a whole new roster, culture, and coaching staff for Montero to get use to, and it’s taking time to get acclimated.

“It’s a new season, new objectives,” Montero told reporters following training on Wednesday. “I can say the difference now is a whole new team. It’s a new coaches mentality, with a different lineup. We start 4-3-3 every game, but mostly, the team mentality is about change. We’re pushing to win a championship. We have a group full of talent, and we can achieve it.”

The goal-starved Caps have scored just twice this season thanks to contributions from centre-backs Doneil Henry, and Érik Godoy in the home opener on March 2nd vs Minnesota United FC.

The 31-year-old Montero led Vancouver with 13 goals in 2017. In two full matches this season, Montero hasn’t hit the back of the net. Although fans might be clamouring for goals, Montero isn’t worried.

“(Laughs), It’s only two games,” Montero explained to Har Journalist. “I arrived two weeks ago, I’m still living at the hotel, so there is no pressure yet. Of course that’s what I came here for, to score goals, help the team, and young players reach the next level. I’m going to do everything in my power, work hard every day, every training session. When I get my first goal, keep pushing for the next one.”

Coach Marc Dos Santos has Vancouver playing a high-press, up-tempo, ball possession oriented style in a 4-3-3 formation. It’s a big risk, big reward type of football. Whitecaps FC have shown they can build from the back, but the finish in the final third is still to come.

As Montero looks to familiarize himself with his new teammates, he is finding himself playing further away from goal. An inform scorer is going to score most goals in front of goal. Anytime you see a striker playing further away, services questions come into play.

“In my season in 2017, I’m not that kind of player that stays only inside the box waiting for something to come up from the skies,” Montero explained. “I like to be in touch with the ball, at the moment, you’re right, I’m kind of far away from the box, where I am dangerous.”

“It’s mostly because I want to get to know my teammates, and be able to participate in the creation of the game, and score when I feel like we’re having more people, more bodies into the box. I want to be there to finalize the play.”

In 154 MLS regular season appearances, Montero has scored 60 goals and added 40 assists. He’s a proven MLS goal-scorer, and they don’t just grow on tress. Once he is able to build a foundation with his new wingers, and midfielders, the goals will pile up.

“Yeah that’s right, and that’s what we’re trying to build,” Montero echoed. “It’s going to take time, we lost two games, yes. I didn’t see that much difference between those teams that are together for one or two seasons or a team that is together for a month and a half. We’re in the right line, right way, keep working hard. (There’s) a lot of good talent here and I think I can give more to the team.”

When Montero is not looking to embarrass MLS goalkeepers, he and his wife, Alexis, have a very important up and coming business venture that they’re extremely proud of.

Colombia and coffee go hand in hand, and who better to open up a coffee shop in the Pacific Northwest than Colombia’s own, Fredy Montero. Santo Coffee Co. is slated to open later this year, in the Roosevelt neighbourhood of Seattle.

“My coffee shop is Santo Coffee, but it’s nothing to do with Marc Dos Santos,” Montero joked. “We’re excited to introduce it to the public. We came together with this dream, and the fact that I am from Colombia, the best coffee is from Colombia. We made it in Seattle, and that is the capital of coffee. In America, everybody knows that Seattle was the first Starbucks. We started construction, and hopefully in 7 – 8 weeks, we’re going to be opening.”

While Seattle is known as the caffeinated capital of North America, Vancouverites are known to settle for a coffee or two, or three. If Santo Coffee Co. is a success, there could be franchise expansion coming to a Vancouver neighbourhood near you.

“One step at a time. I would love to have one here,” Montero revealed. “However, we need to work on the concept there to make it successful. Of course if the opportunity is here, we want to open here.”

You can’t rush a great cup of coffee, and you can’t rush a top goal-scorer. Once that brew is ready, you’re set for the day. Once Montero starts to score, he has the ability to carry Whitecaps FC. The goals, and coffee are only a serviceable barista away.