PORTLAND, OR – Vancouver Whitecaps FC U-23 (1W-2L-0D) fell to a 2-0 defeat against Cascadia rivals Portland Timbers U-23 (3W-0L-0D) in front of a crowd of 3,370 at JELD-WEN Field on Thursday morning.
In a close first half it was Vancouver who looked more likely to score testing Portland goalkeeper David Meves with efforts from distance with both Harry Lakhan and Gagandeep Dosanjh kept out by the stopper.
In first half stoppage time, Portland won the ball in midfield and pushed forward. After a cross into the box there was a goalmouth scramble with the ball finally falling to Timbers’ Jaime Velasco who shot over from the six-yard box as the teams went in level at the break.
Following halftime, the deadlock was broken in spectacular fashion in the 63rd minute. A Portland free kick was cleared by Whitecaps FC but only as far as the Timbers’ Eric Miller. The defender struck a sweet first time shot that gave Simon Thomas in the Vancouver goal no chance.
Whitecaps FC looked to push forward for an equalizer but were hit on the break when Portland goalscorer Miller turned provider with a deep cross into the box that was converted by substitute Reinaldo Brenes in the 75th minute.
Vancouver could not find a goal in the final 15 minutes as the match finished 2-0 to the hosts.
Head of high performance Stuart Neely felt that his team came up against tough opposition but that they didn’t recover from conceding the first goal.
“The first goal they scored was an absolute rocket and if that’s the goal that’s going to beat you then you’ve got to put your hands up and say it was great,” Neely admitted.
“It’s all well and good trying to save face but you’ve got to go out and steal points from teams. That’s what we tried to do but on the day but the team are disappointed by the result. We competed well, we played some good football, but we coughed up a goal and that set the tone for Portland to get the wind in their sails.”
Next up for Whitecaps FC U-23 is a home match against North Sound SeaWolves this coming Sunday. The match kicks off at Thunderbird Stadium at 3p.m. PT.
63' - POR – Eric Miller
75’ – POR – Reinaldo Brenes
Shots: Portland 12 – Vancouver 10
Saves: Portland 3 - Vancouver 1
Fouls: Portland 14 – Vancouver 16
Offsides: Portland 5 – Portland 2
Corners: Portland 6 – Vancouver 4
17' - POR – J.J. Greer (Caution)
56' - POR – Bryan Gallego (Caution)
56' - VAN – Sasa Plavsic (Caution)
73' - POR – Nick Palodichuk (Caution)
78' - VAN – Cam Hundal (Caution)
84' - VAN – Derrick Bassi (Caution)
Whitecaps FC U-23:
1.Simon Thomas; 4.James Farenhorst 5.Derrick Bassi, 6.Adam Clement, 16.Michael Winter; 21. Marco Visintin (10. Bhupinder Jhutty 64’), 7. Harpreet Lajhan, 23.Cam Hundal, 9. Gagandeep Dosanjh (15. Carlos Marquez); 11. Yassin Essa (14. Spencer DeBoice 70’), 12.Sasa Plavsic (17. Niall Cousens 64’)
Whitecaps FC U-23 Subs:
13. Sean Melvin, 10. Bhupinder Jhutty, 17. Niall Cousens, 14. Spencer DeBoice, 15. Carlos Marquez, 2. Colton O’Neill
Portland Timbers U-23
1. David Meves; 16. Anthony Hobbs (29. Saad Abdul-Salaam 58’), 27. Eric Miller, 6. J.J.Greer, 23. Travis Brent (17. Bryan Gallego 45’); 21. Zach Barnes, 28. Nick Palodichuk (22. Zack Foxhoven 76’), 8. Jose Ribas (5. Mitch Lurie 86’), 26. Jaime Velasco (10. Reinaldo Brenes 76’); 25. Clark Phillips (7. Gabriel Conelian 70’), 12. Mark Sherrod
Portland Timbers U-23 Subs:
0. Blake Hylen, 10. Reinaldo Brenes, 5. Mitch Lurie, 22. Zack Foxhoven, 29. Saad Abdul-Salaam, 17. Bryan Gallego, 7. Gabriel Conelian