League1 BC: 'Caps claim second straight W


BURNABY, BC – A masterful performance from the Vancouver Whitecaps FC MLS Academy led them to their second victory of 2024 with a 4-2 triumph over Burnaby FC.

The 'Caps went up one goal to the good after 20 minutes when forward Markus Rukavina slotted the ball home past Burnaby FC goalkeeper Bennett McKay.

Throughout the first half, it was a chippy affair.

Five minutes after he was booked, Jaden Manetta scored the second goal of the match, as his header glanced in off an expertly taken free kick from Angelo Zhu to make it 2-0.

Burnaby FC had their best chance off a dangerous through ball. But 'Caps midfielder Cristiano Da Silva turned and blocked a sharply taken strike from the top of the box.

After play restarted for the second half, the ’Caps pulled off a clinical passing play. Sydney Wathuta collected a chipped ball and pushed forward into the Burnaby box on a wide angle to draw a defender. Wathuta’s low cross was collected by substitute David Ajagbe, who showed a veteran’s clinical touch with a split-second stutter step move that forced McKay to stand his ground. Ajagbe then went around the frozen ’keeper and cooly chipped the ball in.

Ajagbe said afterwards that he and his teammates pull off that “great transition” three-way passing play often in practice.

Matteo Samori provided a final flourish for the 'Caps as his penalty kick beat McKay.

Unfortunately, ’Caps keeper Ben Alexander’s bid for a clean sheet was wiped out when former Whitecaps FC MLS Academy player Asvin Chauhan scored off a rebound with a quarter of an hour left. Burnaby’s Joe Zupo also added one for the home side before the final whistle.

Whitecaps FC coach Ewan Fisher praised his team, calling the win a “very good team performance” that culminated with offensive “efficiency inside the 18-yard box.”

With this victory, the Whitecaps FC MLS Academy now has a record of 2W-1L-1D. Meanwhile, Burnaby FC still searches for their first three-point result of the season. The 'Caps are back in action on Sunday when they host Rivers FC at Thunderbird Stadium. Kickoff for the men's match will be at 6 p.m. PT.


Referee: Denzil Sharma

Scoring Summary20’ – VAN – Markus Rukavina (Riley Ferraro)
32’ – VAN – Jaden Manetta (Angelo Zhu)
58’ – VAN – David Ajagbe (Sydney Wathuta)
76’ – BUR – Asvin Chauhan
79’ – VAN – Matteo Samori (PK)

Cautions3’ – VAN – Angelo Zhu
17’ – BUR – Brandon Torresan
27’ – VAN – Jaden Manetta
41’ – BUR – Emile Saimovici
69’ – BUR – Ty Pound
88’ – VAN – Ben Alexander
90’ – VAN – Amir Ghasemi

Whitecaps FC MLS Academy
90.Ben Alexander; 77.Joshue Ndakala (87.Sahai Williams HT), 72.Nikos Clarke-Tosczak, 71.Jaden Manetta; 74.Aidan Fong, 68.Cristiano Da Silva (65.Mario Lefevre, 73’), 73.Benjamin Lee ©, 88.Angelo Zhu (84.Amoni Thomas HT); 85.Sydney Wathuta (23.Amir Ghasemi 58’), 95.Markus Rukavina (98.David Ajagbe HT), 34.Riley Ferraro (79.Matteo Samori 58’)

Substitute not used
80.Alex Milosevic