Matt Watson and Jordan Harvey
Bob Frid

Whitecaps FC hope more shots equals more goals ahead of FC Dallas clash

VANCOUVER, BC -- As Vancouver Whitecaps FC prepare to play FC Dallas on Saturday as the first of three consecutive road games, the team acknowledges something needs to change.

Maybe it's execution, perhaps it's better defending – or it could simply be a case of waiting for lady luck to lend a hand.

But over the past seven games, the side has picked up just one win – not good enough as the MLS Cup playoffs loom.

“You look at any team, any league, there's up and down periods,” midfielder Matt Watson said of the team's recent difficulties after a training session at the University of British Columbia this week. “Sometimes you get all the luck in the world, the bounces always go on your way. You get these runs where everything always happens for you and there's always going to be little slumps in the season.”

As for how the group deals with having scored just six goals in its last seven games? Well, simply going for goal more could be the solution according to Watson.

“We just have to keep shooting, keep taking our chances and the goals will come,” Watson said. “We've got to make sure we don't turn away from shots. I think maybe we're thinking, 'I don't want to miss, I don't want to miss.' We've just got to take the shots and the goals will come. We've just got to stay confident.”

The team will get a lift with the return of midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker from suspension, as the Englishman missed out for last weekend's 2-2 draw against Chivas USA due to yellow card accumulation.

However, as Reo-Coker returns to the middle of the park, midfielder Russell Teibert will be unavailable for selection as he joins new Canada coach Benito Floro's inaugural national team training camp.

“It will be different, but we've got young players who'll have to step up to the plate,” Reo-Coker said. “It's football. It's a simple game and it's only us as players who make it complicated. We have a job to do.

“Everyone knows what's expected here. If anyone is coming into the team they have to want to wear that shirt. They've got to want to be in that starting lineup. When you get a chance, you have to grab it with both hands.”

Martin MacMahon covers Vancouver Whitecaps FC for MLSsoccer.com.

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