Whitecaps FC see off Chivas USA with emphatic four-goal victory
Highlights: Whitecaps FC 4 - 0 Chivas USA
VANCOUVER, BC - Playing their first match in October, Vancouver Whitecaps FC (11W-12L-9D) extended their unbeaten streak in the league to three matches with an emphatic 4-0 home win over Western Conference rivals Chivas USA (7W-17L-7D) on Wednesday evening.
First-half goals by Gershon Koffie and substitute Dane Richards set the Blue and White on their way to a confidence-boosting victory. Camilo Sanvezzo and Barry Robson found the scoresheet in the second half, as Whitecaps FC earned their first four-goal result in Major League Soccer history on Bell Pitch at BC Place.
With the midweek victory, Whitecaps FC extended the gap between themselves and sixth-place FC Dallas to five points for the fifth and final playoff spot in the MLS Western Conference. However, Dallas have a game in hand. Vancouver’s win also eliminated Chivas USA, Colorado Rapids, and Portland Timbers from MLS Cup Playoff contention this season.
After fine performances as substitutes last weekend, Rennie started Camilo and midfielder Matt Watson on Wednesday night. The Brazilian repaid the Scottish coach’s faith in him by scoring a goal and adding two assists.
Whitecaps FC scored their match winner on 11 minutes with a fine left-footed strike from Koffie. Camilo’s forward pass allowed Kenny Miller to break into the Chivas USA box, where he picked out the streaking Ghanaian with a fine pass. Koffie ran on to the ball and hammered his shot past Goats goalkeeper Dan Kennedy for his third goal of the season.
The joy that produced Whitecaps FC’s early goal was subdued by an early substitution, as Miller was forced off with a right hamstring strain on 18 minutes, with Richards replacing him.
The Jamaican international proved a more-than-capable deputy for the injured Scot, as his pace caused the Rojiblancos many problems. He forced a fine save from Kennedy with an excellent turn and shot before scoring his fourth goal of the season on 35 minutes.
After doing well to win the ball on the right flank, Richards played a give-and-go with Camilo that released him in on the Chivas USA goal. As the winger fended off the attentions of Goats centre back John Valencia, Richards struck a right-footed shot past Kennedy from a tight angle to make it 2-0 to Whitecaps FC at halftime.
In an ironic twist, Chivas USA had the majority of the possession in Wednesday’s match. Yet, what has plagued the Southern California outfit this season has been a lack of goal production. The Rojiblancos created half chances through Laurent Courtois and Juan Agudelo, but goalkeeper Brad Knighton was never tested enough in earning his second career clean sheet with Whitecaps FC, as well as the club’s 11th MLS shutout of the season.
The second half saw Vancouver pick up where they left off and secure the three valuable points. Camilo and captain Jay DeMerit both missed the target shortly after the restart but those were just signs of things to come.
Vancouver’s third goal came on 62 minutes. Robson found Richards in the Chivas USA box before the makeshift striker played a deflected cross into the path of Camilo in the visitors’ six-yard box. The South American eluded Canadian international Ante Jazic to strike home his fifth goal of the season.
Whitecaps FC wrapped up the historic result with a well-worked fourth goal on 73 minutes. Young-Pyo Lee found Camilo at the halfway line before the striker split the Chivas USA backline and dashed down the right flank. With time and space, the Brazilian’s cross found Robson at the far post. The Scot took a touch before striking home his third of the season.
The final whistle confirmed a much-needed win for Whitecaps FC, who ended their seven-match winless streak and went past the 40-point mark for the first time in their short history as an MLS club. Rennie’s side will now take an extended break of two-and-a-half weeks before playing their final regular season home match of 2012 on Sunday, October 21, when they host Pacific Northwest rivals Portland Timbers at BC Place.
Budweiser Man of the Match: Camilo Sanvezzo
Referee: Hilario Grajeda
11' - VAN - Gershon Koffie (Kenny Miller)
35' - VAN - Dane Richards (Camilo Sanvezzo)
62' - VAN - Camilo Sanvezzo (Dane Richards, Barry Robson)
73' - VAN - Barry Robson (Camilo Sanvezzo)
Shots: Vancouver 10 – Chivas USA 8
Shots on Goal: Vancouver 7 – Chivas USA 0
Saves: Vancouver 3 - Chivas USA 2
Fouls: Vancouver 10 – Chivas USA 17
Offsides: Vancouver 2 – Chivas USA 1
Corners: Vancouver 5 – Chivas USA 0
43' - CHV - Miller Bolanos
55' - CHV - John Valencia
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
18.Brad Knighton; 12.Young-Pyo Lee, 40.Andy O'Brien, 6.Jay DeMerit, 3.Jordan Harvey; 28.Gershon Koffie, 4.Alain Rochat, 14.Barry Robson (13.Michael Nanchoff 90'), 16.Matt Watson; 7.Kenny Miller (20.Dane Richards 18'), 37.Camilo Sanvezzo (34.Caleb Clarke 84')
Substitutes not used: 1.Joe Cannon, 15.Martin Bonjour, 27.Jun Marques Davidson, 31.Russell Teibert
1.Dan Kennedy; 7.James Riley, 18.Shalrie Joseph, 5.John Valencia (12.Marco Antonio Delgado 75'), 13.Ante Jazic; 17.Miller Bolanos, 16.Laurent Courtois (10.Nick Labrocca 64'), 6.Peter Vagenas, 21.Ben Zemanski; 15.Alejandro Moreno (27.Jose Correa 64'), 11.Juan Agudelo
Substitutes not used: 24.Patrick McLain, 2.Bobby Burling, 58.Cesar Romero