By Gerry Dobson
It’s a pair of thin, beat up squads heading into a crucial game of the Nutrilite Canadian Championship here in Vancouver.
To make it even more intriguing, both the Vancouver Whitecaps and Toronto FC are coming off poor performances in weekend league matches.
Vancouver was beaten 2-0 in Portland in a game head coach Teitur Thordarson said they were awful defensively. Then they had to endure the seven-hour bus ride back from Oregon.
The 'Caps also have several injuries to key players and they'll be without the suspended Martin Nash. That hurts a lot. He's their best player. As for Toronto, they come to Vancouver after a dismal performance in Houston where they lost convincingly, 3-0.
Sometime after that match goalkeeper Stefan Frei came down with an infected toe. His entire foot was swollen by Monday and he stayed in the team hotel while the rest of them trained under hot, sunny skies on an artificial surface.
Frei will be a game-day decision by head coach Chris Cummins. Not that they lose anything by putting Greg Sutton in there. He's been the consummate pro all the while, biding his time and waiting for a chance. Perhaps this is it.
Toronto is also missing Amado Guevara and Marvell Wynne, both on international duty. On paper, Toronto should be the stronger side. But that should have been the case a year ago, and it didn't work out. For Vancouver it’s a huge opportunity.
Here's one fact: The Whitecaps have plenty of hardware in their trophy case.
Toronto is still looking for its first.