Whitecaps FC to begin preparation for 2017 while aiming to finish strong

Carl Robinson pondering - in game - black sweater

VANCOUVER, BC - Vancouver Whitecaps FC were eliminated from playoff contention following a 2-1 loss to the Seattle Sounders in a wild one at BC Place on Sunday evening.

The 'Caps have officially been eliminated with two matches to go. So what now for Vancouver?

With a trip to San Jose and a home game against Portland, two teams still in the playoff mix, Vancouver could still have a decisive role to play in who finishes above the red line.

Whitecaps FC coach Carl Robinson is now faced with the task of juggling giving minutes to younger players, with keeping a level playing field to all those teams battling for a playoff spot.

"Well there are some guys that probably deserve a chance and they will get a chance the last two games," Robinson told reporters after the match. "But what I will do, we'll do things correctly. We're against two teams that are still fighting for their lives and out of respect to all the other organizations, the teams, we wouldn't do ourselves any justice if we just went into it, willy nilly.

"I won't do that. We'll go in to try and win those two games and we want to finish the season on a high against San Jose and Portland. But there will be players that get the opportunities to play the next two games."

The games may matter little in terms of points and the standings, but for a number of Vancouver's players, they may just be playing for their footballing futures in the city and that should mean two keenly contested matches.

“We’re not going to go out with a whimper," stated Whitecaps FC defender David Edgar. "We’re going to have to go out and show that we’re building something for next season now.

"There shouldn’t be any pressure on people’s shoulders [now], if people were feeling pressure. Just go out there and show these fans what they’re coming to watch next season, because I feel they deserve it and as a club we deserve it."

Robinson has already indicated that he will be ringing the changes in the offseason, as the club looks to bounce back to being a playoff team after this season's blip. Few players should feel safe and Robinson's work is already underway.

"I'll get back to work and I'll work even harder to try and find out the solutions to the problems that I faced this year," Robinson said. "Whether it's scoring goals, conceding goals, too many red cards, curb down on that, that's my job to do. I'll do it.

"[The fans] have my assurance that I will working even harder in the offseason to try and find players that are able to help, and help us get to the next level, of getting a playoff place next year."

Whitecaps FC to begin preparation for 2017 while aiming to finish strong -