Prospects draw games in Netherlands
Vancouver Whitecaps U-12 and U-13 Boys teams continued their tour of Europe with drawn results in the Netherlands this week.
Both teams claimed stalemates against their age group counterparts from Dutch Eredivisie clubs PSV Eindhoven and FC Utrecht during the week.
As they enter the final weekend of their tour, Bart Choufour's young sides will now gear up for tournament action before capping their trip in Germany next Tuesday with friendly games against Bundesliga club Bayer Leverkusen.
Stay logged on to whitecapsfc.com for the latest from the Whitecaps U-12 and U-13 Boys tour of Europe.
Thursday, August 21 - Whitecaps U-13 Boys 3-3 PSV Eindhoven U-13
Vancouver Whitecaps U-13 Boys were held to a 3-3 draw by their counterparts from Dutch giants PSV Eindhoven.
Thursday's game promised to be the biggest challenge of the U-13's European tour, with PSV U-13's having recently won the prestigious Wim Kuijper tournament, where they faced teams from top European clubs like Ajax, Feyenoord, Bayer Leverkusen, Liverpool, and Austria Vienna.
Prior to their game, the young Whitecaps toured PSV's Philips Stadium before taking on their hosts at the club's training facility known as 'De Herdgang'.
It was the young Whitecaps that took the initiative from the start, with the visitors taking the lead on 10 minutes. Matthew Chow and Parker Ellis combined before Ellis found Michael North at the far post with a low and hard cross. North duly converted the delivery for 1-0.
Seven minutes later, PSV equalized when 'Caps goalkeeper Colten Cook was beaten at the near post with a fierce drive, but North restored Vancouver's lead when he took a Chow pass on the break to make it 2-1 at halftime.
The pace of the game increased in the second half, with chances created by both sides before PSV leveled again on the counter-attack with a top finish from their left winger after he eluded Vancouver's Bavi Dhaliwal.
Undeterred, the Whitecaps took the lead for a third time, as Derek Santos headed home Justin Virk's free kick to make it 3-2.
Yet, in stoppage time, the home side earned a draw when the PSV striker dubiously dispossessed Justin Turner-Pearce before making it 3-3. Though left in disbelief that a foul was not given in the build-up to the goal, the result kept Vancouver's undefeated record in Europe intact.
Whitecaps U-12 Boys 0-0 PSV Eindhoven U-12
Vancouver Whitecaps U-12 Boys drew 0-0 with hosts PSV Eindhoven on Thursday.
Where the U-13 contest had six goals on the day, neither of the U-12 sides could find the back of the net, as resilient defending was the order of the day in Eindhoven.
PSV U-12's came into the friendly as recent winners of the Memorial Tournament in Belgium, and it was the hosts that had some of the better opportunities on Thursday, but they found goalkeeper Aman Thind in fine form in the Vancouver goal.
The Whitecaps could have claimed a famous win when striker Erik Edwardson took an Eric de Graaf penetrating pass before hitting a rising shot towards goal. However, the strike brought a fine save from the PSV keeper.
Despite a tough and high-paced game, both teams had to settle for a goalless draw at PSV's 'De Herdgang' training facility.
Wednesday, August 20 - Whitecaps U-13 Boys 3-3 FC Utrecht U-13
Vancouver Whitecaps U-13 Boys drew 3-3 with hosts FC Utrecht on Wednesday.
It was the home side that took the lead when the Dutch side converted from the penalty spot for 1-0.
The goal brought a positive response from the young 'Caps, who made their pressure count when a quick combination between Michael North and Derek Santos saw a ball played into Kyle Sohi in front of the Utrecht goalkeeper. Sohi made no mistake from close range, as Vancouver made it 1-1.
North then gave the Whitecaps the lead just before the break when he intercepted a Utrecht pass before finishing for 2-1. Even Cole Lamont missed the chance to make it 3-1 when he sailed a shot over the crossbar seconds before halftime.
The Whitecaps would extend their lead after the break, as Parker Ellis converted on the rebound after North struck the PSV crossbar with a free kick effort.
Vancouver, however, were unable to hold on to their lead, as the 'Caps were caught napping on Utrecht's second goal before the hosts were awarded a second penalty that earned them a 3-3 draw.
Whitecaps U-12 Boys 3-3 FC Utrecht U-12
Vancouver Whitecaps U-12 Boys played to a 3-3 draw with FC Utrecht U-12's on Wednesday.
In what proved to be an exciting match, hosts Utrecht took the lead when they converted a corner with a volleyed finish.
The goal brought more urgency to Vancouver's play, and five minutes before the break, Russell Coffin brilliantly finished Eric de Graaf through ball for 1-1.
The battle between both teams remained intriguing after halftime, with Utrecht restoring their lead after taking advantage of a poorly played Whitecaps back pass to goalkeeper Aman Thind for 2-1.
Undeterred, the 'Caps made it 2-2 with a fine free kick from Liam Fraser, as he hit the top corner of the Utrecht goal after Aidan Moore was fouled on the right-hand side.
Utrecht took the lead for a third time when good combination play in midfield allowed their speedy right winger to make it 3-2.
Yet, Vancouver showed great resilience in earning a friendly draw with their Dutch counterparts. After Fraser was fouled on the edge of the 18-yard box, he struck another free kick that the Utrecht keeper saved, but only to see Marcello Polisi clean up the rebound for a 3-3 result.