Training report: Vancouver Whitecaps FC control own destiny in Western Conference playoff race
VANCOUVER, BC – With four matches remaining in the regular season, Vancouver Whitecaps FC’s playoff hopes are coming right down to the wire.
The ‘Caps currently sit seventh in the Western Conference – three points shy of sixth-place San Jose Earthquakes and four points behind both fourth-place LA Galaxy and fifth-place Colorado Rapids, who hold the final two playoff positions.
Although they’re currently on the outside looking in, the ‘Caps still control their own destiny. They have a game in hand over San Jose and they meet Colorado twice at the end of the season, which could very well determine the final playoff entrant.
“It’s still all to play for," Whitecaps FC head coach Martin Rennie told reporters after Tuesday’s training session. “We still have to win the same number of games to get into the playoffs.”
“We’re more than capable of winning on Sunday and if we do that we’re right in the mix with where we need to be,” he added.
At this point, the ‘Caps will need at least two more victories to have a shot at qualifying for the postseason for the second year in a row. The rest will depend on the results of the other Western Conference fixtures.
“There are two options,” said Whitecaps FC goalkeeper David Ousted. “We can fold and go home or we can go all in the last couple of games here and try to push us into it. I’ve got to be quite clear about it, I believe we can get in. We just need to come together and do a lot of hard work and come back to what we did in Montreal and San Jose.”
After sitting out Saturday’s match with some tightness in his right adductor, striker Kenny Miller did some light training along the sidelines Tuesday with club physiotherapist Graeme Poole. Rennie said he’s hopeful Miller will be able to train with the group “pretty soon.”
The ‘Caps also welcomed a new trialist to training on Tuesday. Right back Jordan Cyrus will be with the club until October 7. The 22-year-old fullback appeared in 23 of 24 matches with the University of Maryland Terrapins last season, posting two goals and three assists.
In other news, goalkeeper Brad Knighton missed training with a minor cold and it was announced Tuesday that centre back Johnny Leveron and striker Darren Mattocks will be unavailable for Vancouver's October 9 match against Seattle Sounders FC due to international duty.
Whitecaps FC are back at BC Place this Sunday for a Cascadia Cup derby match with Portland Timbers. It will be Vancouver’s second to last home game of the season.
Tickets are still available at whitecapsfc.com/tickets.
Vancouver Whitecaps FC have launched a special offer on 2014 season tickets. Fans who purchase season tickets up until Sunday, October 6, will receive 12 per cent off of their season ticket purchase. Fans can take advantage of this offer and renew or purchase their 2014 season tickets online at whitecapsfc.com or by phone at 604.669.9283 ext. 2.