PORTLAND, OREGON – Vancouver Whitecaps FC are set to take on Portland Timbers at 7:30 p.m. PT (TSN and TSN 1410 radio).
Here are some news and notes on Vancouver’s starting lineup.
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
1.David Ousted; 33.Steven Beitashour, 26.Tim Parker, 22.Christian Dean, 2.Jordan Harvey; 15.Matías Laba, 28.Gershon Koffie; 7.Mauro Rosales, 9.Nicolás Mezquida, 23.Kekuta Manneh; 29.Octavio Rivero
70.Paolo Tornaghi, 13.Cristian Techera, 18.Diego Rodriguez, 19.Erik Hurtado, 20.Deybi Flores, 31.Russell Teibert, 38.Kianz Froese
Carl Robinson makes two changes to his side from last weekend’s loss vs. SKC. Centre back Christian Dean replaces Kendall Waston, who is away on international duty with Costa Rica at the Gold Cup, and Nicolás Mezquida replaces Cristian Techera as Rosales moves to the right wing and Mezquida starts in the number 10 role.
In 23 matches this year, including the Amway Canadian Championship, Robinson has now used 23 different starting XIs. Today’s XI has an average age of 25-years, 10 months, and 16 days.
For the first time ever in Whitecaps FC history, all four starting defenders are American: Beitashour (California), Parker (New York), Dean (Texas/California), and Harvey (California). In total, six different birth countries are represented in the starters: Argentina (x2), Denmark, The Gambia, Ghana, United States (x4), and Uruguay (x2).
Captain Pedro Morales misses his fifth consecutive match with a left calf strain, centre back Pa-Modou Kah is out with a right calf strain for a second straight week, and left back Sam Adekugbe misses his 11th match, including ACC, with a right ankle sprain.
Goalkeeper David Ousted, who was named to the MLS All-Star team earlier today, makes his 69th consecutive MLS start, including playoffs. The 30-year-old native of Greve, Denmark is second only to New York Red Bulls keeper Luis Robles (99) in consecutive MLS matches. This season, Ousted is first in MLS in wins (10), third in shutouts (7), and tied for fourth in goals-against average (1.00).
Right back Steven Beitashour makes his 131st start in MLS regular season action. The 28-year-old native of San Jose, California has started 10 previous matches against Portland, recording one assist. Beitashour is tied for the team lead in assists (4 - same as Morales) and tied for second most by a defender in the league.
Rookie centre back Tim Parker makes his fifth MLS start, and third at centre back. This is the first time Parker will start two straight MLS matches. Last week against SKC, the 22-year-old American had the best passing accuracy among Vancouver’s starters.
Second-year centre back Christian Dean makes his MLS regular season debut and second MLS regular season start. The 22-year American previously started in MLS play back on September 13, 2014 at FC Dallas. Dean also made three MLS substitute appearances in his rookie season. In ACC play, Dean started both matches this year and all four last year. This year in USL action, the U.S. U-23 international has started eight matches – including five matches with Tim Parker.
Left back Jordan Harvey makes his 102nd MLS regular season start for Whitecaps FC, second only to Koffie (105), and 189th in league play. The 31-year-old Californian has recorded two goals and one assist in 10 regular season matches against the Timbers. This will be Harvey’s 12th straight start.
Midfielder Gershon Koffie makes his 105th MLS regular season start today. The 23-year-old native of Koforidua, Ghana, who is a permanent resident of Canada, joined the club in September 2010 and has made 140 first team appearances for WFC in all competitions. In eight regular season matches against the Timbers, Koffie has scored one goal.
Midfielder Matías Laba is making his 67th MLS regular season start tonight, his 50th with WFC. The 23-year-old Argentinean is tied with Portland’s Alvas Powell for the league lead in tackles won.
Winger Mauro Rosales makes his 14th appearance and 12th start of the season. The 34-year old from Villa Marina, Argentina makes his 111th start and 132nd appearance in MLS. In 12 appearances against Portland, he has recorded two assists.
Winger Kekuta Manneh makes his career-high 15th MLS regular season start of the season. This will be Manneh’s seventh straight start, also a career-high. The 20-year-old has scored in three of his last five matches.
Striker Octavio Rivero makes his 19th start of the season – he has started all but two MLS regular season matches and is behind only Ousted and Waston in minutes played (1,627). Rivero leads the team in goals scored with seven and is third on the team with three assists.
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