Sunday, July 31, 2011

Report Card: Whitecaps FC Versus LA Galaxy

For sixty minutes the Whitecaps went toe to toe with the top team in MLS and came within a few inches from taking the lead before it fell apart for them.  A slip by Boxall and a lazy handball in the box by new acquisition Jordan Harvey put the Caps down by two.  Tom Soehn decided to go with three at the back in order to get close the gap in the game but we`re unable to handle the Galaxy counter attack and the rout was on.


Eric Hassli- Vancouver’s designated player did everything he could to set up a goal including mixing it up in the box with the Galaxy defenders.  Hassli’s cross, early in the match, almost setup an early goal while he continued good play holding up the ball and finding teammates.  GRADE:  B+

Camilo- This was a game where Camilo’s lack of defensive awareness hurt the Whitecaps in their own half of the pitch as he was unable to offer support to the defenders.  He was dangerous in the final third and almost converted a free kick but was robbed by the Galaxy goalkeeper.  GRADE:  B

Mustapha Jarju- It is still a work in progress for their second designated player as Jarju is still looking for to find full fitness and chemistry with teammates.  Jarju had a couple of chances but seems to overpower the ball instead of placing the ball on net.  GRADE:  B-


Davide Chiumiento- With the Whitecaps playing the 4-4-2 diamond formation, it was Chiumiento that played the attacking midfielder role behind Jarju and Hassli.  He did a great job with his distribution and connected well with the strikers in front of him and the wingers playing beside him.    GRADE:  B+

Gershon Koffie- With Chiumiento playing in an attacking role, it was up to Koffie to play in a holding position on the pitch.  The goals conceded were not due to any missteps by the Ghanaian teen as he held his position tight and did not allow attackers play the ball down the middle with success.   GRADE:  B+

Shea Salinas- One of the more dangerous Whitecap players on the pitch against the Galaxy, Salinas made it difficult for the opposition to defend him one on one.  He was able to create his own chances as well as chances for other attackers and almost changed the complexion of the game with a shot that hit the post.  GRADE:  B+

Peter Vagenas- When the Whitecaps decided to attempt a comeback and play in three in the backline, they brought in Vagenas for Leathers.  It unfortunately did not have the desired effect as the Whitecaps were unable to maintain any kind of possession in the last 20 minutes.  GRADE:  C+

Nizar Khalfan- The Tanzanian midfielder came on for Jarju with less than 28 minutes to go in the match but could not make an impact.  At first he played on the wing but moved centrally when Chiumiento was removed due to injury.  GRADE:  C+

Michael Nanchoff- When Chiumiento was injured on an errant shot, Nanchoff came on to play on the left side of the midfield.  Unfortunately for the Caps, there was not enough time for the 1st round pick to make any difference in the game.  GRADE:  C


Alain Rochat- The lone bright spot in the backline for the Whitecaps against the Galaxy was Rochat as his play was not affected by the speed of the Galaxy attackers.  The Swiss international did everything he could but it was not enough to make up for his fellow defenders.  GRADE:  B

Jonathan Leathers- It was a decent game for Leathers but his inability to handle Donovan on the counterattacks hurt the Whitecaps backline.  Because he was so focused on the start American midfielder, he was unable to help with the other errors and could not join the attack.  GRADE:  C+

Michael Boxall- It was one of his worst performances of the season and together with his game in San Jose a poor pair of matches for the Kiwi defender.  It was his slip that led to the opening goal and his poor marking continued throughout the game.   GRADE:  C

Jordan Harvey- A tough debut for Harvey as his handball in the box led to the Galaxy’s second goal and sapped the energy out of the Whitecaps team.  He was also responsible for the breakdowns that helped the Galaxy gain a third and fourth goal.  GRADE:  C-


Joe Cannon- A goalkeeper who allows four goals in a match would rarely receive a decent grade but Cannon did all he could to keep the Whitecaps in the game.  There was nothing he could do any different on the goals he allowed and he made several stops throughout the game that kept the score from getting even more lopsided.  GRADE:  B-


This match was a prime example for the Whitecaps of what can happen when there is no finish in the final third and the opposition capitalized on every mistake their own end.  The backline, especially Boxall and Harvey, played very poorly and were unable to handle the speed on the counterattack.  The game might have turned differently if Salinas could have opened the scoring early in the second half instead of hitting the post.  Unfortunately the Caps will have to live with this result and move on to their next opponent, the Chicago Fire, at Empire Field next Sunday.  GRADE:  C+

This is not the typical 1-10 player rating scale
A:  Superstar Performance
B:  Solid Starter’s Performance
C:  Should Be On the Bench
D:  Not MLS Quality

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