Milestone match: Steven Beitashour and Gershon Koffie appear in 100th MLS regular season match
In honour of this achievement, here’s a look at 10 key moments in their respective careers.
January 14: Drafted in the second round of the 2010 MLS SuperDraft (30th overall) by San Jose Earthquakes, his hometown team.
April 10: Plays 90 minutes in first MLS match – a 2-1 road win over Chicago Fire. “It’s tough as a rookie coming into the league where people are faster, people are stronger, people are taller,” he said. “It’s just one of those things. Do you make it or not? You’re kind of thrown into it. If you crumble, you’re gone. I’m just fortunate that I did well and the team did well, and just kept it going.”
April 24: Just two weeks later, Beitashour scores his first MLS goal against Chivas USA – a sliding, half volley from distance.
June 4: Picks up first MLS assist – one of seven that season. To date, no out-and-out defender has recorded more assists in a single season since 2006. “He was a huge part of our growth,” said his coach at the time, Frank Yallop. “He was a good attacking fullback and with the way we played, I loved it. He got crosses in and was a really big, big part of what we were doing well at that point.”
July 25: Starts for the MLS All-Stars in a 3-2 win over English Premier League giant Chelsea – one of just three MLS All-Stars to play the full 90 minutes.
April 21: Makes his first start of the 2013 season, kickoff off a stretch of a career-high 37 straight starts up until Iran’s World Cup camp in May 2014.
August 24: Scores his second career MLS goal – a right-footed volley from inside the box that was nominated for MLS Goal of the Week.
January 15: Has his #3 retired at Leland High School, becoming just the second Leland alumnus to receive such an honour. “I was just honoured and very grateful,” he said. “But I’m still shocked. I’m surprised they didn’t go back on it.”
January 27: Traded to Whitecaps FC in exchange for allocation money. “I’m so appreciative that they were willing to take a chance on me and give me an opportunity to extend my career,” he said. “It’s been a short journey so far [in Vancouver] but hopefully it’s a long one. I’ve had a lot of fun.”
June 2: Named to Iran’s roster for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
September 3: Officially joins Whitecaps FC’s USSF Division 2 side after training with the club for nearly a month. “It’s like a dream coming true because I used to read about MLS when I was a kid,” he said at the time, of the possibility of joining Vancouver’s MLS side the following year.
February 9: Signed to an MLS contract with Whitecaps FC in advance of the club’s inaugural season.
March 19: Plays 90 minutes in Whitecaps FC’s first-ever MLS match – a 4-2 win over Toronto FC.
August 7: Scores first MLS goal in a 4-2 win over Chicago Fire.
October 22: Named Whitecaps FC’s Most Promising Player as part of the club’s year-end awards.
August 11: Starts his 20th straight MLS match, setting a new career-high.
September 12: Comes in at 12th in annual MLS 24 under 24 list. “His dogged defending in midfield and his ability to jumpstart the attack with a positive touch are what stand out,” wrote MLSsoccer.com.
November 1: Starts and plays the full 90 minutes in Whitecaps FC’s first-ever MLS Cup Playoff match – a 2-1 loss to LA Galaxy.
February 26: Obtains Canadian permanent residency card, agrees to contract extension with Whitecaps FC. “The fans have been fantastic since I came to Vancouver in 2010,” he said at the time. “They’ve welcomed me and made this my home.”
May 24: Turns in dominant performance in 2-2 draw with Seattle Sounders FC, scoring a goal and setting new career-highs in touches, tackles, and shots. “It was probably his best performance,” Whitecaps FC head coach Carl Robinson told reporters after the game. “The goal just topped it off. It was an all-around performance and he should be proud of himself.”
It’s not too late to participate in the best sporting experience in Vancouver. Whitecaps FC offer a flexible range of ticket products, including prorated season tickets, 5-packs, student season tickets, and a youth soccer half-season ticket. Single-match tickets start at $22, subject to applicable fees. For more information on all Whitecaps FC ticket options, call 604.669.9283 ext. 2 or visit whitecapsfc.com/tickets.