Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency teams will play a pair of California sides this weekend at Whatcom Community College in Bellingham, Washington as they continue their United States Soccer Development Academy (USSDA) seasons against San Diego Surf and Nomads SC.
Gordon Forrest’s U-18s are currently in second place in the West Conference, Northwest Division with a 10W-6L-2D record. They kickoff at 11 a.m. PT on Saturday against San Diego Surf, who currently sit in eighth place in the West Conference, Southwest Division with a 3W-9L-6D record. On Sunday, the U-18s kick off at 12 p.m. against Nomads SC, who currently sit in last place (9th) in the West Conference Southwest Division with a 2W-16L-2D record.
Craig Dalrymple’s U-16s are currently in sixth place in the West Conference, Northwest Division with a 6W-10L-2D record. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. PT on Saturday against San Diego Surf, who are in fifth position in the West Conference, Southwest Division with a 7W-7L-4D record. On Sunday, kickoff is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. PT against Nomads SC, who are currently in last (9th) position in the West Conference Southwest Division with a 2W-14L-4D record.
The U-18s are coming off a a pair of strong performances in their last outings, drawing 1-1 with Real So Cal and defeating Arsenal FC by a score of 3-0.
When looking ahead to this weekend, Forrest hopes to put much of this week’s learning into practice against the California clubs.
“It’s one of these double game weekends, which is good from the player’s point of view,” said Forrest. “We had a real good challenge last week against UBC in a friendly. It was very good experience playing against an older, more physical team. Most of this week’s preparation has been based on last weekend. Every opponent is very keen to beat us, so we need to prepare for that. It will be two good opportunities to put what we have learned this week into practice”
The U-16s are coming off a pair of valiant efforts last time out, after falling 2-1 in defeat to Real So Cal and 3-0 to Arsenal FC.
Dalrymple - having returned from an EFCL coaching course in France - knows his team is looking forward to another challenge.
“These are two squads that have had mixed results and we haven’t seen them yet. We don’t know much about them,” said Dalrymple. “We’ve been in good spirits lately and everyone has been quite lively in training. The boys are gearing up for the weekend and after this weekend’s matches, they will get a well deserved break, so they are looking forward to that.”
This weekend’s clashes will be the last USSDA matches before both squads take a week off. The U-18s and U-16s will then continue their USSDA seasons on March 30 against Cascadia rivals Seattle Sounders FC Academy as part of the annual Whitecaps FC Showcase.