VANCOUVER, BC – Whitecaps FC head coach Carl Robinson had a simple message for his team as they returned to Vancouver this week for the start of preseason training: “Push yourself.”
And by the looks of it, that’s exactly what they’ve been doing.
The ‘Caps have trained every single day this week and will do so again on Saturday, before getting their first day off on Sunday. Many of the days have included afternoon gym sessions or runs, as well. And according to Robinson, the players have come back at a “very, very good standard.”
“It’s always nice to report back,” Robinson told whitecapsfc.com. “Obviously everyone has an offseason where they enjoy time with their family and get a holiday. Three weeks prior to the first day of the preseason, they get sent their programs. We require them to come in at a certain level of fitness and the requirement was met by the majority of players.”
Robinson said that it will be important for the ‘Caps to get their “forward players in key areas” more this season, which will be a focus throughout the preseason – possibly through experimenting with different formations.
But at the very least Robinson expects his team to be one that “never gives up.” And that’s why he and his staff have designed such a demanding preseason schedule.
“We’re going to fight from the first minute to the 94th minute,” Robinson said. “We’re going to compete. We’re going to try and run all day … They’re going to need to push themselves to limits they haven’t been before. It will be uncomfortable, but it will be well worth it.”
Not surprisingly, midfielders Russell Teibert and Alphonso Davies were the two fittest players to report to camp, as per the beep test held earlier in the week. Robinson said that newcomers Efrain Juarez and Kei Kamara have also set a good first impression from a leadership perspective.
“They’ve certainly come in with the right mindset,” Robinson said. “They’re used to playing at a certain level. They’re used to pushing themselves. The standards these guys set are really important for the rest of the group.”
NEWS AND NOTES
- The ‘Caps are scheduled to train in Vancouver on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday next week before departing for Hawaii, where they will take part in their first preseason fixtures of 2018 as part of the Pacific Rim Cup.
- Former Atlanta United FC and Toronto FC right back Mark Bloom has joined the ‘Caps in preseason as an unsigned, training camp invitee.
- Whitecaps FC Residency players Chance Carter, Simon Colyn, Thomas Hasal, Damiano Pecile, and Jake Ruby have all trained with the first team at some point this week.
- Centre back Tim Parker, who is currently away with the U.S. men’s national team, will return to Vancouver on Monday.
To join the 'Caps at the Pacific Rim Cup in Hawaii, contact Uniglobe One Travel - Neal Chark at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 604.677.1495 – at any time for immediate, professional and expedited service.