Carl's Keys to the Game vs. Philadelphia Union
Right back on track
Whitecaps FC prepare to host Philadelphia Union
There is no doubt that the players were disappointed with the way their unbeaten streak came to an end against LA Galaxy last weekend.
We did not put in a good shift and it will be important for them to bounce back from that straight away.
The team has been playing with a lot of confidence and needs to put last week’s performance behind them by coming out strong and taking the game to Philadelphia. As I have often said, our up-tempo style of soccer has overrun teams in the past. When we move the ball quickly and put teams under pressure, good things have happened for us.
We are the only unbeaten team at home and if we come to play we will have great chance for another win at BC Place.
Mclnerney and Le Toux
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This game brings together two of the highest scoring team in Major League Soccer.
Many have come to know the ‘Caps fearsome attacking trio of Russell Teibert, Camilo and Kenny Miller.
Philadelphia have a three-pronged attack of their own with Jack McInerney, Conor Casey and Sebastien Le Toux. However, the Union will be missing Conor Casey through suspension after yellow card accumulation. That means they will need more from the other two.
McInerney is fourth in the league with 10 goals, and Le Toux is leading the league with nine assists.
Mclnerney is an out-and-out goal poacher who seems to be in the right place at the right time. He is always moving and has a knack for losing defenders in the penalty area and scoring tap-in goals.
Of course, you need good service if you are to get these chances and Le Toux has provided plenty of those. We all remember Le Toux from his time in Vancouver. He was always tireless in his running and he popped in a few key goals. But things have worked out for the best.
Le Toux is obviously suited to playing in Philly. The likeable Frenchman has elevated his play in both of the two stints he has played in Philadelphia. In his first stint he led the Union in goals, and now he leads them in assists.
Both McInerney and Le Toux will have to be shut down in order for us to keep our unbeaten record at home.
Rusin makes a big block to deny Mike Magee
As mentioned, we have two of the highest scoring team in MLS playing at BC Place on Saturday. That means that both defences could be under a lot of pressure.
When two high scoring teams get together, two schools of thought usually clash. Generally, both teams either continue to emphasize attacking play and bank on outscoring one another. Or, they both really bunker down and focus on shutting down the opposing attack, which can cancel them both out.
Trying to outscore a team is always a risky proposition, so it will be important that the whole team focuses on team defence when we don’t have the ball.
We know we will get good chances playing at home and hopefully they will find the back of the net. Before the Galaxy game we had been very tough to break down and did not concede many goals against. That was because everybody was committed to work hard defensively, from the front to the back.
Play team defence and our offence will take care of the rest.