Striker Nick Addlery has five tallies, including two against his former team
By Ian Walker
Sunday vs. Puerto Rico Islanders
7 p.m. at Swangard Stadium
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Nick Addlery said there were no hard feelings after being released by the Vancouver Whitecaps one month after helping the team to its United Soccer Leagues First Division championship. On the phone last month, the 27-year-old Jamaican striker sounded sincere at that.
He got a fresh start closer to home after a disappointing 2008 season while the move allowed the Whitecaps to go in another direction up front this season. End of story.
Then he goes and scores a pair of goals in a 2-1 victory over the Whitecaps in the Puerto Rico Islanders' home- and season-opener on April 18 and throws his whole theory out of whack.
And to think you believed him.
"It was the best game I've seen him play -- he made something happen every time he was involved," said defender Wesley Charles, Addlery's closest friend on the Whitecaps last year.
Addlery took the time to show Charles around and make him feel comfortable after the native of St. Vincent and the Grenadines joined Vancouver mid-season.
"Nick's an honest guy, but a proud guy. Any player facing his former team is going to get fired up to play them."
Addlery scored only four goals in 34 games last year with Vancouver, but has five goals in seven games since signing with Puerto Rico in February, when he joined the Islanders for CONCACAF Champions League play.
"I hold no grudge," said Addlery. "It's a business and from my perspective it turned out a win-win."
There's something to that. Vancouver sits second in the USL-1 while Puerto Rico sits just one point back, but with two games in hand. Marlon James, who replaced Addlery up front, has three goals in two starts with his new team.
Sunday marks Addlery's first game back in Vancouver since the Whitecaps defeated the Islanders 2-1 in the championship game last October. Charles said he should expect little hospitality from his former mates. Especially after what happened the last time they all met.
"I spoke to him a few days ago and that's the last time we'll talk until I see him after the game," said Charles. "It's always good to see your ex-teammates and your friends doing well in the league, but just not against us."
- The undefeated Islanders (2-0-1) are the lone USL-1 side to have beaten the Whitecaps (2-1-2) this season, although Vancouver is coming off a 1-0 loss to Toronto FC in the opening match of the Nutrilite Canadian Championships on Wednesday.
- Marco Reda will be unavailable after suffering a concussion in a clash of heads with TFC's Nana Attakora-Gyan. Tyrell Burgess will also miss the match, in order to attend his graduation from Lynn University this weekend.
- FC Barcelona's tour of the U.S. this summer will include a match against David Beckham's Los Angeles Galaxy on Aug. 1 -- and a trip to Seattle to play the Sounders on Aug. 5. Barcelona will play Manchester United for the Champions League title on May 27.
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