VANCOUVER, BC – It was business as usual for Vancouver Whitecaps FC Tuesday morning at UBC’s Dhillon Field.
Less than 48 hours ago, the ‘Caps became Cascadia Cup champions after Portland Timbers defeated Seattle Sounders FC 1-0 at JELD-WEN Field.
Winning Whitecaps FC’s first Cascadia Cup since joining Major League Soccer is an achievement the players and coaches spoke fondly of, but they know their job is far from over.
“Not at all,” Whitecaps FC head coach Martin Rennie told reporters. “It’s nice that we’ve had a good win and we’ve had a little break after that, but it’s all about the next game now.”
The ‘Caps currently trail fifth-place Colorado Rapids by three points for the fifth and final playoff position. They meet the Rapids Saturday at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Colorado, before hosting the Denver outfit the following weekend in their regular season finale.
“We’ve got plenty of time to prepare now,” Rennie said. “Having a few extra days was important and now the guys look really sharp and focused and ready to go.”
Tuesday’s training session, which consisted mostly of small-sided games, lasted about 90 minutes.
Striker Kenny Miller trained lightly along the sidelines and did some work with club physiotherapist Graeme Poole, as he continues to recover from a right adductor injury that has kept him out of the last three matches.
Defender Brad Rusin (right ankle sprain) and winger Omar Salgado (right foot fracture), meanwhile, both trained in full with the main group.
In other news, defenders Johnny Leveron (Honduras) and Carlyle Mitchell (Trinidad and Tobago), striker Darren Mattocks (Jamaica) and midfielder Russell Teibert (Canada) all are still away with their respective national teams.
Teibert played 45 minutes in Canada’s 3-0 loss to Australia Tuesday afternoon, Leveron and Mattocks will meet in tonight’s CONCACAF World Cup qualifier between Honduras and Jamaica, and Mitchell is a member of the Trinidad and Tobago squad set to host New Zealand in an international friendly.
All four players are expected to be available for selection this weekend against Colorado.